Can I Register a Car in a Different State Than I Live? Here’s What You Need To Know

If you have more than one place to live, you could be confused about where you should register your vehicle. The answer to this question could be contingent on a number of different aspects, such as where you have the car most of the time or which U.S. state has the rules that are most suitable for you. Before making a choice, you will need to give careful consideration to the aforementioned factors.

Your car has to be registered in the state where you spend most of your time. In addition to this, you will need to choose the legal system of the state in which you want to operate. The rules for registering a car in a state might vary from one jurisdiction to the next. In order to determine what the criteria are, you will need to verify with both states.

As soon as you are familiar with the criteria imposed by each state, you will be able to choose the one that is most suitable. In this article, we’ll talk about “Can I register a car in a different state than I live?” and the different options you have, which will help you know the best way to have your car registered in two different states. Let’s get started!

States that Do not Require Your License to Match With Your Registration

The following is a list of the states in the United States that do not require your driver’s license to match your vehicle registration:

  • The Big Apple
  • State of North Dakota
  • Pennsylvania
  • Massachusetts
  • Maine
  • Kentucky
  • Indiana
  • Delaware

When Should You Register Your Car in Another State in the United States?

If you’ve just relocated to a different state, you may be curious about the deadline for registering your vehicle in the new state. The response to this inquiry is going to be contingent on a number of different aspects, such as the legal system of the state to which you have moved and the anticipated length of time you will spend there. Check with the state’s Department of Motor Vehicles (DMV) to find out exactly what you need to do to register your car there.

In the first thirty days of relocating to a new state, you will, in almost all circumstances, be required to register your vehicle there. Having said that, there are a few notable exceptions. For example, if you are only going to live in another state for a short time (less than 90 days), you might not have to register your car there.

Special Situations For Car Registration


If you are a military person and have been stationed in another U.S state, you can register your automobile without the need to change your residency. You will have to show proof of your military status, like a document with information about your leave and pay or orders telling you to go to the new site. There may also be an inspection for your car in the new state.

College Students

It is possible that you will be allowed to register your automobile as an in-state vehicle even if you are a student attending college in another state. This may help you save money on expenditures related to owning a vehicle, such as registration fees and other expenses.

To do this, you will need to show proof that you live in the state where your school is. You can do this with a rental agreement, a utility bill, or any other official document. When you have all of these documents in hand, you will need to make a trip to your local DMV office in order to finish the process of registering your vehicle.

Check with your school’s administration to see if there are any special requirements that must be met in order to register a car in the state. Some schools may want you to get a parking permit or meet other requirements before letting you register your automobile as an in-state vehicle.

Registration for a Second Vehicle at Your Home

If you have a second residence in another state, you may be required to register your vehicle. This is often the case if you have a permanent residence in both states or if you spend a considerable time at your second property.

Check with the Department of Motor Vehicles in the state where your second home is to find out how to get your car registered there. When you register your vehicle, you will need to provide documentation that you are a resident of the state, that you have insurance, and that you own the vehicle.

Currently Working And Residing In Multiple States

In most states, you have to register your vehicle in the state where you keep it most of the time. On the other hand, there are a few states that have reciprocity agreements in place with other states. If you have a job in one of these states but make your primary residence in another, you have the option of registering your vehicle in either state.

Visiting a State

You are required to register your vehicle with the state government of every state that you are going to be visiting for a prolonged period of time. It’s possible that the procedure for accomplishing this will be different in each state.

Do verify the regulations of the states you will be driving through before you set out on your trip. You might need auto insurance to register your car in some places.

Does the Address on Your Car Insurance Policy and the One on Your Registration Have to Match?

Is it possible to register my automobile in a new state while keeping my current insurance address? In most cases, insurance providers require that the address on your registration and the address on your certificate of insurance be the same.

You cannot insure your vehicle at one place while registering it at a different one. There are a few limited exceptions to this rule, including service personnel who are allowed to register a vehicle in a state that is not their state of legal residence.

What will happen if you tell an insurance company a lie about where you live? If you register your automobile in a state other than the one in which it is insured, you might run into some major issues.

For instance, one interpretation of it is that it constitutes insurance fraud. If you get into an accident and make a claim on your insurance, then your claim might be refused; this is why you should never lie on your car insurance application.

Why is it considered fraud? The Insurance Information Institute (III) says that it is possible to commit insurance fraud by lying on an application about any piece of information, no matter how small. Since prices are highly dependent on geography, it is against the law to provide false information about one’s location in order to get a lower price.

How do I register my car in different states?

The procedures for registering a vehicle in a state might be different from one another, but there are a few fundamental procedures that are always required:

  • To begin, you will be required to provide evidence that you are insured. You will also be required to show evidence that you are the legal owner of the vehicle, such as a title or a temporary registration from the state you previously resided in. Before you can register your vehicle, you may be required in certain states to first get it inspected for both safety and emissions.

  • After you have gathered all of the required papers, you will need to make a trip to the local DMV office in order to finish the process of registering your vehicle. In certain states, you may be able to do this task online or via the mail.
  • After you have successfully registered your vehicle in the new state, you will be required to get new license plates. If they are from the same state, you may be allowed to retain the old ones, but if they are from a different state, you’ll have to acquire new ones.
  • After you have received your new license plates, you will need to visit the local DMV office in order to have your registration information updated. This contains both your physical address as well as your telephone number and email address. You will also be required to provide the proof of your car’s insurance.

As soon as everything is brought up to date, you will be able to legally operate a vehicle in your new state!

Is it possible to buy a vehicle in one state and register it in another?

It is possible to buy a vehicle in one state and have it registered in another, but there are a few things to think about first.

  • To begin, you have to check to see whether the vehicle you want to register satisfies the emission requirements of the state
  • Second, the state in which you want to register the vehicle requires that you get insurance for the vehicle before you may register it there.
  • To complete the process of registering a vehicle in that state, you will inevitably be required to pay a variety of taxes and fees.

The Bottom Line

Motorists should register their vehicles in the state in which they reside. When it comes to registering and insuring your car, it is important to act in accordance with the law. Since you should never break the law by driving a car, it is smart to register and insure your car in the state where you live.

Keep in mind that the registration of your car has an effect on the coverage you get from your insurance. Check with your auto insurance company if your car is registered in more than one state and is insured in those states as well.

You might be able to keep driving in a state where you don’t live if you meet one of the exceptions. This will depend on your specific situation, though.

Do you need any more information regarding vehicle registration in another state or anything about automobiles? Please feel free to write to us and our experts will be there for your assistance.

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