New law changes aims to simplify vehicle registration

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LAKEWOOD, Friday March 17, 2023 -- A new law aims to streamline various vehicle registration and title processes in an effort to simplify the vehicle registration process for Coloradans.

Under the Vehicle Registration And Certificate Of Title Act (HB22-1388), vehicle owners who have more than one vehicle can now register one of the vehicles for less than a year so that all the owner’s vehicles can expire at the same time. This optional process will help better serve Coloradans by allowing them to have only one expiration date to remember. 

The new law also allows vehicle owners to keep their specialty license plates when transferring to another vehicle. A previous law which went into effect December 2021, made license plates expire upon transferring the vehicle to another owner. Specialty license plates are now exempt from the previous law.

The Vehicle Registration and Certificate of Title bill also includes these changes:

  • Lowers the weight on vehicles for recreational registration fees that are based on weight from 10,000 to 6,000 pounds.
  • Removes language that says that vehicle lien filings are public records and removes the requirement that a lienholder must certify the copy of lien documents.
  • New documents accepted in lieu of scale tickets. Authorizes a vehicle owner to present a manufacturer's certificate of origin, certificate of title, certified scale ticket, or other documents (instead of a scale ticket) or systems as determined by rule (previously they could only present a certified scale ticket showing the weight for trucks 4,500-10,000 pounds).
  • Dealer title fee increase. Increases the dealer title fee at the counties from $7.20 to $25; if paid to the county clerk, the county retains $21.80 and the rest goes to the division.
  • Notarization change for specific vehicles. The bill of sale is no longer required to be notarized when obtaining a title in lieu of a bonded title on a collector's item, street-rod vehicle or horseless carriage of 25 years or older.
  • Clarifies that surcharges are pro-ratable.
  • A one-time late registration fee of $10 for utility trailers, trailers with an empty weight of 16,000 or less, camper trailers, multipurpose trailers and trailer coaches that have not been registered since before July 1, 2010.
  • Creation of an inoperable decal. Any owner of an inoperable vehicle undergoing maintenance, repair, restoration, rebuilding or renovation must pay an annual specific ownership tax. When the taxes are paid, the owner will receive a decal as proof of registration. No surcharges or fees will be charged if the owner keeps the vehicle on private property for the purposes of maintenance, repair, restoration, rebuilding, or renovation.
  • Trailer coach surcharge change. The road safety surcharge is set at $16 for trailer coaches (minimum of 26 feet long used for temporary living quarters).
  • Bridge safety surcharge change. Sets the bridge safety surcharge at $13 for trailer coaches.


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