Register Car in North Dakota
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For renewal information, visit our registration renewals page.
You'll need to register in North Dakota for the first time if:
- You recently moved here
- You recently purchased a used vehicle from a private party
- You recently received a car via gift, inheritance, or from a family member
Your have five days after the purchase date to register and title your vehicle. If you cannot make it to your Motor Vehicle Division (MVD) office within this five-day window, you'll have to obtain a self-issuing temporary registration permit (SFN51429) from any law enforcement agency, dealer, or branch office location. Temporary permits are valid for 30 days.
Registering for the first time also requires car insurance coverage. If you have yet to pinpoint a carrier, you should take the time to compare different quotes from different insurance companies before settling on a policy.
If you buy a vehicle from a dealer, you probably won't have to worry about submitting registration papers. But it's always wise to ask before leaving the dealership in your new vehicle.
If you just purchased a used a vehicle from a private party or are transferring ownership for another reason, you'll need the following:
- The vehicle's title. It must have the sale date, seller's signature, your name and address, and odometer information if the vehicle is less than 10 years old. (You can obtain a duplicate title if yours is lost or damaged.)
- A completed Application for Certificate of Title and Registration of Vehicle.
- A completed Damage Disclosure Statement if the vehicle is less than nine years old.
- Payment for 5% of sales tax.
- Payment for $5 title transfer fee.
- Payment for registration fees.
NOTE: You won't need proof of a passed emission check, because the state doesn't require them; however, if you're registering at the same time you complete the title transfer, you may want to bring along a bill of sale, too.
Still shopping for a used vehicle? Avoid surprises and order a vehicle history report before putting money down.
The registration fee is based on the weight of your vehicle and the year it is first registered (model year has no bearing). The MVD provides a handy online page for calculating your registration fee.
For additional assistance, call (701) 328-2725.
When you're ready to get plates for your vehicle, visit your local MVD office with all required documents. You have the option of ordering standardized, specialty, or personalized plates (expect to pay more for specialty and personalized plates), and at some point you can even purchase frames for your plates.
After fastening permanent plates to your vehicle, don't forget to affix the registration decals to the rear plate. Place the month decal in the lower left corner, and the year decal in the lower right corner.
The MVD recommends contacting a tax attorney or your accountant to learn if this option exists.
To minimize the impact of unexpected travel mishaps, strongly consider subscribing to a roadside assistance package. Many of these packages provide a wealth services including free towing, road maps, and recommendations on auto repair shops. An after-market auto warranty will protect your budget from unanticipated repair costs, and finding a mechanic you feel comfortable with will make you more open to regular preventive maintenance checks.
There are also plenty of safety accessories available on today's market. If you enjoy chatting on the phone while driving, a hands-free headset will minimize distractions by keeping your eyes on the road and your hands on the wheel. The latest child safety seats are not only protective, but also comfortable and easy to move. And regardless if you only use your vehicle for short neighborhood errands, always carry a car emergency kit.
Other Topics in This Section
- Register Car
- Registration Renewal
- Registration & Insurance
- Replacing a Lost Registration
- RV & Motorhome Registration
- Custom Built Car Registration
- Boat Registration and Licenses
- Title Transfers
- Replacing a Lost Title
- Salvaged Vehicles
- Special Vehicles
- Drivers with Disabilities
- License Plates & Placards
- Smog & Emission Checks
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We put a lot of effort into making our content helpful & accurate. Please let us know if you see something that isn't clear or correct; we are here to ease any frustrations you may have while navigating DMV topics. We are not a government agency, please reach out to your local DMV, insurance agent, or respective professional for further assistance on specific situations.