Before Renewing Vehicle Registration, Wait for the Bill

Contact: Mike Marando, Armando Botello, Jan Mendoza, Jaime Garza
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Office of Public Affairs
2415 First Avenue
Sacramento, CA 95814
(916) 657-6437

June 30, 2011

Sacramento–If your vehicle registration is due during the month of July, wait until you receive a billing notice in the mail to pay it, the Department of Motor Vehicles (DMV) announced today.

“Our best advice is this: wait until you receive a bill from us to pay your fees,” said DMV Director George Valverde. “We will begin mailing billing notices on July 1, and all customers will be given a 30-day grace period to pay fees without penalty.”

The department will also be regularly updating its Website with information including the specific registration expiration dates for which customers can renew their vehicle registration.

Note: Recent law (SB 94) prohibits the renewal of a vehicle registration until either the registration expiration date or the DMV generates a renewal notice, whichever comes first. The law requires registration renewal notices to be mailed out on or close to the expiration date of a vehicle license, instead of 60 days in advance.

Customers whose vehicles require a biennial smog check will still be reminded on the registration renewal, as in previous years. However, customers may smog their vehicles before they receive their renewal notice since smog certificates are good for 90 days.

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Don’t Stand In Line, Go Online! Doing business with the DMV has never been easier. The DMV offers an array of services to customers 24 hours a day, 7 days a week through its Web site (, including online appointments for written and drive tests; vehicle registration and driver license renewals, selection of personalized license plates, changes of address and payment of fees via secure debit transactions. Customers can also effect transactions by calling DMV customer service at (800) 777-0133. DMV is a department under the Business, Transportation and Housing Agency.

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