Vehicle Industry Registration Procedures Manual

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Section 5 of 38

Chapter 4: Use Tax

4.055 Vehicles or Vessels Purchased Outside of the United States

California use tax is due on vehicles/vessels purchased and delivered outside the United States for use in California subject to the 12-month or 90-day rule, as appropriate. Refer to the Transactions Subject to Use Tax section in this chapter.

The following must be submitted:

  • A REG 256 completed by the applicant for use tax credit.
  • The balance of use tax due after the use tax credit, if any, has been applied.

The following procedures must be followed:

  • Determine if the transaction is subject to use tax by verifying the:
    • Owner’s date of actual physical possession out of state.
    • Date of delivery to a shipping agent or placement in storage for shipment to California.
  • Collect the balance of use tax after the use tax credit, if any, has been applied.
  • Refer applicants who object to pay the use tax due to CDTFA for review.
    • Applicants may also pay the use tax due and request a refund from CDTFA.
  • Do not make exceptions to these procedures.