FAQs - Registration

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Registration Taxes and Fees

A newly purchased vehicle is subject to vehicle registration late fees 61 days after the purchase date.

Vehicle registration late fees are imposed when payment for renewing your vehicle is not received timely. With the exception of temporary permits, owners receive a one month grace period after their registration expires. Then, the $25-per-month late fee applies to any portion of the subsequent months for up to four months. The total amount assessed will not exceed the $100 late fee limit.

  • Effective July 1, 2010, the late fee will be $10 for vehicles without motive power that weigh 16,000 pounds or less, that are subject to taxation, and that are not registered when required by law. The weight of a trailer of any kind is the empty weight. C.R.S. 42-3-112(1.7)
  • Vehicles without motive power include trailers, camper trailers, trailer coaches, multipurpose trailers and special mobile machinery without motive power.
  • Late fees accrued prior to July 1, 2010 will be included in the late fee assessed on or after July 1, 2010, however the total amount assessed will not exceed the $100 late fee limit.
  • Example: Transaction date is July 15, 2010. Customer registration for a 14,000 pound trailer expired January 2010 with a one month grace of February 2010. The late fee due is $100. This includes $25 each month for the months of March, April, May and June and $10 for July, but the late fee is still limited to $100.

Example: Transaction date is July 15, 2010. Customer registration for a camper trailer expired February 2010 with a one month grace of March 2010. The late fee due is $85. This includes $25 each month for the months of April, May and June and $10 for July.

There are instances when the registration late fees may be waived.

  • If the owner of a vehicle who is active in the military serving outside Colorado when the registration grace period expires and the vehicle has not been operated on any public highway in Colorado between the time the registration period expired, including the grace period and the time the vehicle is registered.
  • If a vehicle is used to operate a commercial business as part of the normal operation of the business is exempt late fees if the vehicle has not been operated on any public highway in Colorado for one full registration period.
  • If a vehicle was reported as stolen and then recovered.

The $10 late fee is not eligible for the late fee waiver or reduction authorized pursuant to HB10-1212, except for commercial vehicle trailers and farm vehicle trailers. See commercial definitions example and C.R.S. 42-3-112(1,5)(b) for additional details. C.R.S. 42-1-102(17.5)‚ Commercial Vehicle means a vehicle used to transport cargo or passengers for profit, hire, or otherwise to further the purposes of a business or commercial enterprise.

  • Example: Transaction date is July 20, 2010. Registration of a commercial trailer expired February 2010 with a one month grace of March 2010. The late fee due is $85. This includes $25 each month for the months of April, May and June and $10 for the month of July.

The $10 late fee may be reduced or waived on this commercial trailer independently if it has not been operated on the roads for one full registration period. 

Fees to title and register vehicles in the State of Colorado are based on age of the vehicle, weight, taxable value, purchase date, and type of plate requested. Estimates for registration fees are not provided over the phone. Some counties provide information on their website. Once you have accessed the appropriate county, click on Motor Vehicle and then click on fees. Counties use this equation to estimate your registration fees. Otherwise, you will need to go to your local county motor vehicle office to obtain this information.

If you have lost or need to obtain a duplicate registration, please contact your county motor vehicle office.

General FAQ

  • You can change your vehicle address through myDMV on the Vehicle Services tab, then click Add/Change a Vehicle Address. You also want to do the same on the Driver License tab as well.
  • You can also visit the County Motor Vehicle Office in the county where the vehicle is to be registered. Identification documents will be required.
  • No, you can not transfer your license plates to a new vehicle unless they are currently personalized or the vehicle is registered with horseless carriage plates. For more information on our license plate reissue program, please visit DMV.Colorado.gov/NEW-PL8T.

Unfortunately, county motor vehicle offices do not offer refunds if you sell your vehicle during its annual registration. You can transfer any remaining prorated amount of your registration to a new vehicle at your county office.

You will not be able to complete your registration online if:

  • Your registration is expired more than 13 months
  • An emissions test is required
    • Visit Air Care Colorado to find a location (please note it can take up to 3 days for emissions information to be uploaded into the system, you can then try to register online again)
  • Insurance information is not available in the Colorado Motorist Insurance Identification Database (MIIDB)  on our vehicle

If you cannot renew your registration online, you will need to renew through your local county motor vehicle office; please check their website for your transaction options.

If your county participates in the kiosk program, you can renew at any kiosk location and have your tags and registration printed in approximately 2 minutes. Credit cards and checks are accepted; fees do apply.

No, once plates are ordered you may not get additional temporary permits. Plate orders from myDMV typically take 21 days to process; if your permit is expiring you can visit your county motor vehicle office as they carry regular plate inventory on hand.

Vehicles that will not be operated for a period of time still must be registered and must meet emissions requirements.  A DR 2303 Non-Use of Vehicle form can be used as replacement for proof of the owner’s insurance when the vehicle is in a non-use status.

Insurance must be Colorado insurance or meet Colorado requirements as required by DORA.  See above if the vehicle is currently non-drivable.

Yes, you can register the vehicle in Colorado without it being titled here.

Please be advised there is a third-party service fee that is less than 2.9% of the total renewed amount if using a credit card. If using an electronic check there is a $1 fee. This amount will be included in the colorado.gov total price. If you do not wish to pay the third-party service fee, please cancel the transactions and pay using an alternative method like cash or check to your county.  Refunds cannot be issued once our transaction is completed. 

The State of Colorado titles and registers ALL trailers. Title applications for trailers have the same requirements as applications for other vehicles. Trailer MSOs that are not on secure paper are not acceptable with the following two exceptions:

1. Trailer MSOs from any person who only manufactures trailers that weigh less than two thousand pounds and does not manufacture any other type of motor vehicle. and/or

2. Trailer MSOs from any person, other than a manufacturer operating a dealership (or as a dealer) pursuant to section 12-6-120.5 C.R.S. who is a licensed dealer selling motor vehicles that such person has manufactured.

Currently the counties of Adams, Alamosa, Arapahoe, Archuleta, Baca, Boulder, Broomfield, Chaffee, Cheyenne, Clear Creek, Conejos, Costilla, Custer, Delta, Denver, Dolores, Douglas, Eagle, El Paso, Fremont, Garfield, Gilpin, Grand, Gunnison, Huerfano, Jackson, Jefferson, Kiowa, Kit Carson, Lake, Larimer, Las Animas, Lincoln, Logan, Mesa, Moffat, Montezuma, Montrose, Morgan, Otero, Ouray, Park, Phillips, Pitkin, Prowers, Pueblo, Rio Blanco, Rio Grande, Routt, Saguache, San Miguel, Summit, Teller, Washington, Weld and Yuma accept Master Card, Visa, Discover and American Express as a payment option when titling and registering a vehicle. Additional counties may be added at later dates. Please contact your County Motor Vehicle office for updated information.

No, Colorado law does not allow for the provision of sample plates for sale.

You may choose to use the license plate on other vehicles, return them to your county DMV or recycle them with a recycling service that will take metal.

Military Exempt Plates

Recently, many Colorado counties began issuing military exempt license plates, a complete list is below. If your county of residence is not listed, your military exempt license plate will be issued through the state.


Adams, Alamosa, Arapahoe, Archuleta, Bent, Boulder, Broomfield, Chaffee, Cheyenne, Crowley, Costilla, Conejos, Custer, Delta, Denver, Douglas, Eagle, Elbert, El Paso, Fremont, Garfield, Gilpin, Grand, Gunnison, Huerfano, Jackson, Jefferson, Kit Carson, La Plata, Lake, Larimer, Las Animas, Lincoln, Logan, Mesa, Montrose, Morgan, Otero, Ouray, Pitkin, Park, Prowers, Pueblo, Rio Blanco, Rio Grande, Routt, Sedgwick, Teller, Washington and Weld. Click here to find your county motor vehicle office.

If your county of residence is not listed, the first exempt set is issued by the State Registration Section:

In Person:

Division of Motor Vehicles

Department of Revenue

1881 Pierce Street

Lakewood, Colorado 80214-3503

By Mail:

Department of Revenue

Title and Registration Sections

P.O. Box 173350

Denver, CO 80217-3350

Second and additional sets may be obtained at respective resident County Motor Vehicle Offices.

Yes, you would need to re-qualify in Colorado. The requirements of this type of plate are different in each state. Colorado statutes require the applicant to provide verification from the Veteran's Administration that they meet one of the following requirements:

  • Permanent disability, service connected, rated at 50% or more,
  • Loss or permanent loss of use of one or both feet,
  • Loss or permanent loss of use of one or both hands,
  • Loss of sight in both eyes, and
  • physical impairment verified in writing by a physician licensed to practice medicine in Colorado.

AND,

  • form DR 2219,
  • A written verification of the applicant's mobility restrictions which must be confirmed by one of the following individuals:
    • Colorado physician (must be licensed to practice medicine in this state).
    • The Director of the Division of Rehabilitation.
    • Commissioned Medical Officers of the U. S. Armed Forces, the U.S. Public Health Service and/or the U.S. Veterans Administration.

Please provide a copy of either your military discharge DD Form 214, copy of formal orders showing award of the Purple Heart medal, or a copy of the certificate for the award of the Purple Heart medal. Also a copy of either your Colorado title, Colorado registration, Colorado title complete notices, or Colorado title receipt. Proof of insurance on your vehicle. And if applicable, a copy of your current emissions report.

Unfortunately, no. The spouse of the veteran must obtain regular license plates and pay all appropriate fees at their county motor vehicle office.

Refunds are issued at the discretion of each county clerk and recorder. The Colorado Motor Vehicle Statutes and the State Division of Motor Vehicles DO NOT establish refund procedures.

If the Disabled Veteran license plate was issued by your County Motor Vehicle office please visit that office with one of the following ownership documents:

  • The Certificate of Title for the new vehicle or
  • Title complete notice for the new vehicle.

If the Disabled Veteran license plate was issued by the Division of Motor Vehicles, Registration Section as an exempt license plate please submit the following ownership documents:

  • The Certificate of Title in the name of the disabled veteran for the new vehicle (if applying in person), or
  • A photocopy of the title for the new vehicle, or
  • Copy of the DR 2574, the computer generated title application for the new vehicle, or
  • Copy of the registration/title receipt providing the title information has previously been submitted to the State Title Section.
  • A copy of the current registration for the vehicle for which the D/V plates are being transferred from.
  • Proof of insurance and Secure and Verifiable Identification Document (SVID) are required. Please do not fax or mail a copy of your SVID. Complete the DR 2842 Supplemental Secure and Verifiable Identification Information and Attestation Clause form.
  • Proof of emission may be required depending on the county of residence and the vehicles‚ year of manufacture.

Documents may be submitted:

Recently, many Colorado counties began issuing military exempt license plates, a complete list is below. If your county of residence is not listed, your military exempt license plate will be issued through the state.

Adam, Arapahoe, Bent, Boulder, Broomfield, Chaffee, Cheyenne, Costilla, Delta, Denver, Douglas, El Paso, Fremont, Gilpin, Grand, La Plata, Lake, Larimer, Las Animas, Lincoln, Mesa, Montrose, Ouray, Park, Pueblo, Rio Blanco, Routt, Sedgwick, Teller, Washington, Weld

In person: By Mail:
Department of Revenue Vehicle Services Unit 1881 Pierce Street Lakewood, CO 80214

Title and Registration Section

PO Box 173350

Denver, CO 80217-3350

By Fax (303)205-5978

Low-Power Scooters

The applicant must present to the Division of Motor Vehicles, Registration Section or an authorized Low-Power Scooter Dealer the following:

Applications not completed by an authorized Low-Power Scooter Dealer may either be mailed or presented in person at the addresses below.

In person: By Mail:
Department of Revenue Vehicle Services Unit 1881 Pierce Street Lakewood, CO 80214

Title and Registration Section

PO Box 173350

Denver, CO 80217-3350

By Fax (303)205-5978

Yes, an operator of a Low-Power Scooter shall possess a valid driver license or minor driver license. 

Effective July 1, 2010 all Low-Power Scooters shall have a complying motor vehicle insurance policy or a certificate of self-insurance. Low-Power Scooters shall not be registered on or after July 1, 2010 without proof of complying motor vehicle insurance policy and payment of the Motorist Insurance Identification Fee. Non-compliance is a misdemeanor traffic offense with a minimum penalty for such offense is a $500.00 fine and that the maximum penalty for such offense is one year's imprisonment and a $1,000 fine.

Personalized License Plates

You must submit an application for approval. If approved, you will receive a notification for payment. Upon receipt of payment your plate will be placed on order to be made. Generally, it takes 6 to 8 weeks for plates to be sent to your county motor vehicle office. Your county office will in turn notify you by mail upon receipt of your plate.

If your choice(s) are rejected you will receive a notice stating the reason(s) why.

Collector Vehicles

An original plate shall meet the following criteria in order to qualify for use of the plate:

  • The plates were made at least thirty years prior to registration,
  • The plates are embossed with the year of original issue,
  • The plates are legible,
  • The plates were issued contemporaneously with the year of manufacture of the vehicle upon which they are displayed and,
  • The plates do not exceed seven characters.

Your vehicle must have been manufactured at least thirty years prior to registration. It will first be required to have a regular registration issued, such as a Horseless Carriage, Collector, or Street Rod series license plate. The vehicle must be insured. The applicant must sign and date the declaration statement in form DR 2818. Also, please submit a photocopy of the license plate when applying.

Secure and Verifiable ID

Colorado Residency Requirements

If you own or operate a business in Colorado or, are gainfully employed in Colorado, or reside in Colorado for 90 consecutive days you are a resident of Colorado. Within 90 days after becoming a resident of Colorado, an owner of a motor vehicle required to be registered you will be imposed vehicle registration late fees.