Vehicle Registration Extensions

With many DMV field offices still temporarily closed during the COVID-19 pandemic, we are offering Californians more time to complete vehicle registration transactions without worrying about late fees and penalties.

Registration extensions apply to:

We are waiving late fees and penalties for vehicle registration renewals due between March 16 and May 31, 2020 —  as long as you renew your registration within 60 days of the original expiration date. 

If your registration expired on or after March 16, 2020 and you already paid late fees/penalties, DMV will issue a refund. Do not cancel your payment. We are working to issue refunds as quickly as possible.

Additionally, Governor Gavin Newsom signed an Executive Order on April 23, 2020 that temporarily suspends the requirement to have current license plate stickers for vehicles with registration expiring between March 4 and June 30, 2020. This suspension will last through June, 2020. 

Next Steps

While DMV field offices are closed, you can renew your vehicle registration:

Complex registration renewals often require additional documentation and may be denied online or at a kiosk. You can complete these registrations through DMV’s Virtual Field Office or available business partners.

California has not waived smog test requirements at this time. If your renewal notice indicates a smog test is required, your vehicle must pass the smog test before you receive your new registration and sticker.

For vehicle transfers on or after March 4, 2020, we are temporarily suspending the requirement to submit a transfer of ownership within 10 days of the transaction. We are also waiving late fees and penalties during this time period. 

The suspension will last through June 22, 2020. 

Next Steps

While DMV field offices are closed, you can transfer titles:

  • Through the DMV Virtual Field Office
  • By mail if you have the CA title (mail the signed/endorsed title and other necessary documentation to the DMV address on the back of the title, the address on the Duplicate Title Application, or to:

    DMV
    P.O. Box 942869
    Sacramento, CA 94269

This suspension does not apply to vehicles sold by a dealership. In most cases, the dealership is required to file the paperwork with the DMV.

If your vehicle is currently registered in a state other than California and the registration renewal is due between March 16 and May 31, 2020, we are temporarily suspending the requirement to register that vehicle in California within 20 days of the due date. We are also waiving late fees and penalties during this time period. 

A vehicle must be registered in California if it is based in California or is primarily used on California highways, even if registered to an owner who isn’t a California resident.

The suspension will last through June 22, 2020. 

Next Steps

With the temporary suspension in place, we recommend waiting to register your out-of-state vehicle until the service is available at DMV field offices.

Learn more about registering an out-of-state vehicle.

This suspension does not apply to used vehicles sold or transferred by a dealership that submits the paperwork directly to DMV. If an out-of-state dealer gave you the paperwork to submit to DMV, then this suspension applies to you

We are extending motor carrier permits that would have expired in March, April, or May 2020 to June 30, 2020. 

DMV has notified law enforcement that we are extending motor carrier permits.

Next Steps

Renew your motor carrier permit online.

Temporary operating permits that would have expired on or after March 4, 2020 are now valid through June 22, 2020. 

We have notified law enforcement that we are extending eligible temporary operating permits.

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