Registration Renewal in South Carolina
Compare Insurance Rates in 3 Easy Steps
1. Start Your Quote:
You must renew your registration every 24 months.
Renew SC Registration
It's illegal to drive with an expired registration anywhere in the state. It's also against the law to drive without some sort of financial protection. Most drivers choose to take out auto liability insurance to handle this requirement. If you need insurance or are thinking about switching providers, visit our Insurance Center to find carriers and compare rates.
Learn about your renewal options in our "Check Your Renewal Notice" section below.
Register a Vehicle in SC for the First Time
Did you just buy a car or move to the state? If so, you'll need to register your vehicle. See our main registration page for instructions on how to do this.
Register a Non-Operational Vehicle
The state doesn't have any special registration policies for non-operational vehicles. So, you'll register your vehicle―and renew its registration―following the same instructions as those with operational vehicles.
Before your registration expires, you should receive a renewal reminder from the state that contains your property tax and renewal fee information. You must pay your property tax before you can renew your registration. These taxes go to the county treasurer, not the Department of Motor Vehicles (DMV).
If you didn't receive your notice/tax bill, contact your County Auditor's office.
Because the state doesn't require them, you won't find information about an emissions inspection on your renewal notice. However, renewal time is a great time to make sure your car is running as cleanly as possible.
Avoid Late Fees and Penalties
If you don't renew your registration by the expiration date, you'll be hit with late fees that begin at $10 and escalate to $75.
- Have your Visa, MasterCard, or Discover Card credit card ready to pay the fees.
- Visit the tax payment area of your county's site and enter the required information:
If you complete all your requirements and process your transaction correctly, you should receive your registration stickers in the mail shortly.
However, if you receive an MV1 form in the mail indicating that your registration wasn't processed correctly due to an insufficient payment or necessary additional information, you may properly finish the transaction online.
- Locate your notice/tax bill.
- Have the payment for your fees.
- Have proper identification.
- Go to your County Treasurer's office.
- Find your notice/tax bill.
- Follow the instructions provided.
- Mail the form along with your payment in the envelope provided.
Once you receive your registration material, make sure to follow the instructions provided to properly place your stickers on your plates.
Because your renewal fees are partly based on the estimated value of your vehicle, you can use this surcharge as a deduction on your tax return. Talk to a tax attorney for more information.
It's great to have the renewal matter behind you; however, there are plenty of steps you can take to make driving safer for yourself―as well as other motorists.
Try to find a dependable, skilled mechanic who can not only take care of these routine matters, but be able to spot trouble before it becomes dangerous.
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
Your Opinion Matters To Us!Send Feedback
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.