Handling a Kentucky registration sticker not received situation can be a hassle, especially if you have been waiting to receive your renewed registration for a while. In some cases, important decals from the registration renewal process will fail to arrive after you have ordered new tabs for a renewal or to replace stickers that you have misplaced. Unfortunately, you may need to apply for new tabs when they do not arrive in the mail in a timely manner.

If your license plate sticker was not received, it is important so that you do not end up driving with expired tabs on your license plate. Even if your stickers were delayed because they were lost in the mail, you can still receive a ticket for driving without the proper registration. Below, find out how to get new stickers from the Department of Motor Vehicles (DMV) and learn more about the importance of getting the process completed before your registration expires.

Common Reasons for a Registration Sticker Not Being Received in Kentucky

A variety of scenarios can result in your DMV sticker not being received. In some cases, the DMV office or the Post Office will mishandle the stickers, causing them to get lost in the mail. However, it is far more common for issues with your application to cause a delay in receiving your new decals. A car sticker not received usually results from one of the following:

  • Moving after you apply for a renewal or replacement decals
  • Using an old address on your application
  • Filling out the application incorrectly or incompletely
  • Including the wrong fee

If your decal has not arrived, it is possible that your order is still being processed. Some counties issue decals in less than a week, while others may take longer. Before going through the steps to order a replacement, you can save time and money by contacting the County Clerk where you live to see how long decals usually take to arrive.

Can you legally drive if my Kentucky registration sticker was not received?

Driving without registration in Kentucky is against the law even if you have renewed your registration but have failed to receive the new decals before your current ones expire. The only exception to this rule applies if you are a member of the military and your registration expired while you were serving on active duty. As a member of the military, you can legally operate your vehicle with an expired registration for 30 days after returning to Kentucky from your service. Before this time period elapses, though, you must get your registration renewed.

In the event of a DMV registration sticker not received, you can be ticketed as soon as your current registration expires or 30 days after your registration expires if you are in the military. Keep in mind that a law enforcement officer can choose to issue a ticket even if you have renewed your registration but have yet to receive or affix your new stickers.

Additional Consequences of a Car Sticker Not Received in Kentucky

The biggest consequence of not receiving your car tag sticker on time is that you risk driving without valid registration. However, the process for getting replacement tabs also becomes less convenient if you let your registration expire before applying for replacement tabs.

You can usually renew your registration online, but you cannot replace the sticker online in most situations if you attempt to order new stickers after your registration has expired. You typically must visit the County Clerk’s Office in person rather than getting tabs online or through other methods. Some counties may still allow you to get a registration sticker online after your decals have expired, but you will have to contact the local office to verify which methods are available to you.

Steps to Take if Your Kentucky DMV Sticker Was Not Received

In the event of a license sticker not received in Kentucky, you will almost always need to order a replacement. Before doing so, it is worth contacting the County Clerk where you live to check on the status of your order. Remember, processing times vary by county and it is possible your application for decals is still being filed. If you find that your tabs were sent out but never arrived, then you may begin the process of applying for replacement registration.

Another step you can take is to verify which address the County Clerk has on file for you. Keep in mind that using an outdated address is one of the main reasons for your decals to get lost in the mail. If you have an old address on file, it is important to update this information before attempting to order replacement stickers.

Where to Get Registration Sticker Replacements in Kentucky

To get a DMV sticker replacement, it is almost always necessary to visit the County Clerk’s Office in person. However, some counties allow drivers to submit the required forms and documents to the clerk via mail. Note that the registered owner of a vehicle is the only person who can apply for replacement stickers. Drivers who need new tabs will need to provide the following:

  • An original Certificate of Registration (photocopies will not be accepted).
  • Proof of insurance for the vehicle in question.
  • A replacement form.
  • A $3 fee payable to the clerk.

Before signing the replacement application form, car owners should be aware that their signature needs to be notarized. The form can either be notarized at the County Clerk’s Office or at an independent notary’s office. Note that the car plate sticker renewal fee may be higher if a driver chooses to get his or her form notarized outside of the County Clerk’s Office.

Last updated on Tuesday, March 10 2020.