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How to Renew a Car Registration in Utah

Utah vehicle registration renewal is necessary every year. Driving with expired car registration documents is an infraction in the state and leaves you at risk for a citation. Therefore, you must renew car registration materials on time. You are required to do so whether or not you are notified ahead of your vehicle’s current registration expiration date. Renewing car registration documents is easy, as there are several methods at your disposal. For more information on DMV vehicle registration renewal procedures and requirements, including those for military members, review the sections provided below.

How to Renew Car Registration Documents Online in Utah

You can easily renew car registration online with a few items of information. However, before you can renew your car registration using the online portal, you must meet three criteria:

  • You must be the owner of the vehicle.
  • You must have certificates showing that your vehicle has completed safety and emission inspections, as necessary.
  • You must have a credit card with which to pay the car registration renewal fees.

After you renew your car registration online, you should receive your new registration and plate decal in the mail within 15 days. If you do not receive them within that timeframe, call or visit your local DMV office.

Note: As long as you are not more than six months removed from your registration’s expiration date, you can purchase a temporary permit online. This permit is valid for 15 days and allows you to meet the necessary criteria for full renewal, including obtaining inspection certificates. You do not need to print your temporary permit immediately after you have paid for it. You can return to print it later.

How to Renew Utah Car Registration Documents in Person

DMV vehicle registration renewal in Utah can be accomplished at any of the department’s local offices. Simply visit the office with all necessary inspection certificates. You will also need to bring payment for applicable renewal fees, and the DMV accepts most forms of payment.

If you have expired vehicle registration materials and you need to have your vehicle inspected, the DMV can issue a temporary permit. Unlike the fixed 15-day temporary permit for online applicants, the length of the permit issued by the DMV office varies depending on the motorist’s circumstances.

In-person vehicle registration renewals are not limited to DMV offices. The state of Utah has a number of inspection stations where you can complete required inspections, renew your auto registration, and get a new license plate decal all at once.

How to Renew Your Utah Vehicle Registration by Mail

Renewing vehicle registration documents by mail is also simple. To do it, combine the renewal notice you received in the mail with any necessary inspection test certificates and fees. Then mail the package to the following address:


Motor Vehicle Division
P.O. Box 30412
Salt Lake City, UT 84130

How soon can you renew your Utah car registration?

You must renew your car registration within two months of your current registration’s impending expiration date. The reason for this is that most vehicles require an emission inspection before their registration can be renewed, and this inspection cannot be done more than two months before you renew your registration.

What is required to renew expired car registration documents in Utah?

Regardless of your vehicle registration renewal method, you must have proof of ownership for the vehicle, proper inspection certificates and payment for fees. In addition, you must have:

  • Completed an identification number inspection.
  • Paid property taxes, the automobile driver education tax and the uninsured motorist identification fee.
  • Paid any other necessary fees.

You do not need to include the auto registration renewal reminder you received in the mail when renewing in person, though it is recommended that you include this when applying by the mail-in method.

Expired Car Registration Penalties in Utah

If you do not perform DMV auto registration renewal on time, you are risking certain penalties. Any police officer may stop you to inspect your car if he or she has reason to believe it is not safe or equipped to legal standards. An officer may also stop you if your vehicle’s equipment is not repaired enough to be properly operated. If your car registration expired, the officer may consider this a “required part” of the vehicle that is not present. Upon the officer’s inspection, he or she may issue you a citation for driving without a valid registration.

Expired vehicle registration documents do not necessarily translate to immediate punishment, even if you receive a citation. You are not guilty of an infraction and do not have to pay a fee if the citation you received was only for expired registration and was issued before two months had passed since the expiration date. However, you will need to renew your expired car registration within 14 days after receiving the citation. If the above conditions are not met, you will have to pay the fine.

Renewing Your Utah Car Registration Materials While Out-of- State

The best way to renew your car registration materials while out-of- state is to use the online method. You can also renew by mail.

Note: You will not be able to renew your vehicle registration online if your vehicle needs a safety or emissions inspection ahead of its registration renewal.

How to Renew Utah Vehicle Registration Documents as a Military Member

Vehicle registration renewal for military personnel can be broken into two categories:

  • Nonresidents stationed in Utah
  • Utah resident military members stationed outside the state

The first type of service member may renew his or her vehicle’s registration in another state if it is his or her legal residence. The second type of service member can continue renewing the Utah registration on his or her vehicle, and he or she may be entitled to receive the following exemptions:

  • A property tax exemption
  • An emissions inspection exemption
  • A safety inspection exemption

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