California Car Registration

California DMV Car Registration

According to the State of California Department of Motor Vehicles Statistics for Publication, there were over 22 million registered vehicles in the state and over 23 million driver licenses in 2011.

For California vehicles, California DMV car registration is required under the law. If the car has been purchased from a licensed California dealer then the dealer does the paper work for the registration. It is he/she who submits the required documents along with the fee with the DMV and gives the owner temporary operating authority. The owner gets a Certificate of Title (if required), license plates, stickers and a registration card, six to eight weeks after the purchase date. If the owner has bought his/her car from a private party then he/she has 10 days to transfer the ownership in his/her name. The following requirements will be need to be fulfilled:

  • Appropriate DMV fees
  • Odometer Mileage Disclosure Statement, if appropriate
  • Use tax payment, if appropriate
  • Smog certification, if appropriate
  • A completed and endorsed Certificate of Title or Application for Duplicate Title (REG 227)

When the car is sold or transferred, the owner will have to report it to the DMV office within 5 days. The seller will have to complete and submit the Notice of Transfer and Release of Liability form (REG 138). The form can be filled in, downloaded, printed and mailed to the DMV office. It can also be obtained by calling the DMV at 1-800-777-0133.

For out-of-state-vehicles, California DMV car registration is required under the law as well. The car must be registered within 20 days after its owner becomes California’s resident or gets a job in the state. The following will be required for registration:

  • Odometer Mileage Disclosure Statement, if appropriate
  • Appropriate DMV fees
  • Use tax payment, if appropriate
  • Weight certificate for commercial vehicles only
  • Smog certification, if appropriate
  • Last issued out-of-state registration card or out-of-state title
  • Verification of the car completed by the DMV
  • Completed and signed Application for Title or Registration (REG 343)

Car Registration In Los Angeles

Can you compare California vehicle registration statistics for the year 2010 and 2011?

The statistic shows the number of registered automobiles in California in 2010 was 17.98 million. In 2011, this number went up significantly and amounted to 22 million registered vehicles according to State of California Department of Motor Vehicles Statistics for Publication. It is illegal to drive a vehicle without proper registration.

Is there a way to perform a free CA DMV license plate lookup?

The official website of the California DMV charges a fee to provide you with the vehicle records against the license plate number that you enter into the query field. However, there are ways to find out this information for free. There are private companies that have information that they have compiled into databases which can be accessed. Browse our site more for additional details

Which is the most authentic source of information regarding California car registration locations?

The most accurate source of information is always the official DMV site that is maintained by the state of California. The relevant section on has an alphabetically ordered search index that you can use to find out the contact details and other information regarding your respective local DMV office.

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