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If you have recently purchased a vehicle through a dealership or a private seller, you will need to apply for a car registration. All vehicles in your possession must be registered in your name to be driven legally in your state. You cannot typically apply for a new vehicle registration online or by mail. You must visit a DMV office in person to register a car. To make sure that you are fully prepared for the process, download our informative digital guide. Our guide contains everything you need to know to register your vehicle with ease. You will also learn how to replace or renew your car registration, and how to change your name or address.

2. By Mail

Some states allow residents to register cars by mail. However, these applicants must meet certain eligibility requirements, such as temporarily residing out of state or having purchased the vehicle out of state. To obtain your new car registration by mail, you will need to send your completed application and all necessary documents (such as proof of ID, a bill of sale, an insurance card, etc.) to your local DMV office. You will also need to send in a check or money order for the full payment amount. Due to mailing and processing times, delays are common with the mail-in application method. It may take several weeks for you to receive your new car registration.

3. In Person at a DMV Office

In most instances, you will be required to get your car registration in person at a local DMV office. You must submit a filled-out application, proof of your identity, evidence of the car purchase and proof of auto insurance coverage for the vehicle. Additionally, you need to provide payment for all applicable fees, such as registration fees, titling fees and state taxes. Because many car owners are not sure which forms are required or which fees must be paid, application delays are common at the DMV. Additionally, any mistakes on DMV forms will add to your potential wait time for receiving your new registration.


Drivers are required to apply for a car registration in Mississippi for all vehicles in their possession that are going to be operated within state roadways. Vehicle registration and titling procedures in Mississippi are overseen by the Department of Revenue (DOR), which also issues licenses to drive and oversees tax payments. All vehicle owners must meet the applicable MS eligibility requirements to receive a registration and a title. Overall, requests for registration documents must be accompanied by the applicable processing fee to be accepted by the DOR.

The MS DMV registration process can also be different for temporary visitors and military service members who are stationed in the state. Moreover, the DOR offers temporary registration permits in certain cases. In general, the application procedures for drivers of newly-purchased cars and used vehicles is somewhat different. Nonetheless, new license plates are issued after first-time registration requests are processed. Keep reading to learn more about how to register a car in Mississippi.

Mississippi Car Registration Requirements

In order to register a car in Mississippi, vehicle owners must meet the state’s application requirements and submit a complete request with the applicable fee payments. Motorists often ask, “How much is a car registration for most vehicle owners in MS?” In general, there are standard fees for first-time registration applicants that differ from the renewal registration requests that all vehicle owners must pay.

When preparing to pay the car registration fees and submit the application packet, MS drivers must gather certain specific documentation. The majority of vehicle owners will need to provide the following paperwork when applying for a registration:

  • The vehicle’s current certificate of title and registration, if the car was purchased from an individual during a private sale.
  • State-issued photo identification of the vehicle owner, such as a drivers license or an identification card.
  • A title application, if the vehicle was purchased from a dealership.
  • Odometer statement (not applicable to new vehicles).
  • If vehicle was purchased from an out-of-state dealer, title or manufacturer’s statement of origin (MSO) and bill of sale.
  • Power of attorney form (if applicable).

Car Insurance Requirements for Registering a Car in Mississippi

Registering a car in Mississippi is not connected to the vehicle owner’s auto insurance policy or coverage. In fact, MS drivers are required to have liability auto coverage in addition to other forms of coverage in order to meet state standards. Thus, as a general rule, proof of insurance is required when submitting a registration request in the state.

Registering a Vehicle in Mississippi

Unlike certain states, a Mississippi car registration online is not offered for first-time registration applicants. Instead, vehicle owners must submit their vehicle registration requests in person at a local DOR customer services location along with all of the necessary supporting material. The application process is significantly different for owners of recently purchased used vehicles in comparison to buying new cars from an auto dealership. Military personnel can also follow specific registration guidelines in Mississippi.

How to Register a New Car in Mississippi

In most cases, the bulk of the Mississippi car registration cost and related paperwork is handled by a dealer when a motorist purchases a car from a dealership. The dealer will generally issue temporary tags so that the driver can take his or her new car home directly from the dealership while waiting for the permanent documentation to be completed. Drivers in this situation are required to take the yellow copy of the title application to their local tax collector’s office in order to request their permanent license plates.

Registering a Used Car in Mississippi

The DOR registration procedure for owners of used vehicles requires drivers to submit all registration applications in person to their nearest tax collector’s office. Car registration requirements for owners of used cars are more involved than those for owners of new vehicles, because the request must be submitted by the new car owners themselves. Along with the application criteria listed in previous sections, owners of used vehicles should remember to include a bill of sale if no purchase price is listed on the certificate of title.

The driver can request his or her new car registration once in possession of the newly-purchased used vehicle. The following steps can be following for MS drivers registering a used car:

  1. Gather the current title and registration of the vehicle, a recent odometer reading, your valid ID and any other case-specific information.
  2. Pay for the applicable application fee.
  3. Submit the registration packet to the DOR in-person at your nearest local tax collector’s office.

How to Register a Car in Mississippi as a New Resident

What you need to register a car as a new resident to the state of Mississippi is similar to what established residents need when registering a newly purchased used car. Therefore, new residents need to apply in person at a tax collector’s office, just like all other established residents in MS. Motorists in this situation have 30 days from taking up residence in the state to complete their registration application before any late fees are added.

New residents to Mississippi must provide their current vehicle registration when requesting their new registration with the DOR. Current registration may be in the form of license plates or a registration receipt issued by another state government. Any lien or leasing documentation should also be included with the application.

Vehicle Registration for Military Members in Mississippi

Mississippi car registration services do not need to be accessed by military service members who have been temporarily stationed in the state. In fact, vehicle owners who are active duty military personnel stationed in MS do not need to obtain new registration or tag documents while in the state. Instead, they can maintain the registration and title they received from their home state to legally operate their cars.

Temporary DMV Registration in Mississippi

In order to get a vehicle registration immediately after purchasing a new car, auto dealers are allowed by the DOR to provide short-term permits to new owners. These temporary registration documents permit the vehicle owner to operate his or her new vehicle for up to seven days while he or she waits for the vehicle’s permanent documentation to be processed.

Mississippi License Plates

After submitting a new car registration application, the vehicle owner will receive his or her new Mississippi license plates. These plates must be validated with the correct registration tags and placed in the correct location on the vehicle to be in-line with state law. When completing a vehicle registration renewal in person or online, MS drivers can request specialty license plates instead of the standard state emblem license plates commonly issued. Specialty plates carry an additional processing fee and generally take longer to be issued than standard plates.

Mississippi Car Registration Fees

Mississippi car registration fees are determined by local tax collectors, but generally follow state guidelines to charge drivers a standard cost. Most MS vehicle owners can expect to pay a car registration price of $14 for first-time applications and $12.75 for renewal requests. These are base costs that do not include state taxes which vary based on the type of the vehicle, the value of the vehicle and where the vehicle is based.

New residents who do not register their vehicles within the mandatory 30-day window can expect to pay a $250 late fee. Penalties for late renewals are usually a compounded 5 percent fee of the total cost, capped at a 25 percent total.

Last updated on Monday, December 3 2018.

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