Replacing a Lost Registration in California

Of all the inconvenient little problems that happen to us in life, losing your vehicle registration is likely at the top of the list.

Luckily, the California Department of Motor Vehicles (DMV) makes the replacement process easy and stress-free. We’ll help you with the details below.

Looking for info on a lost title or license plate? Jump over to our guides to duplicate CA titles and duplicate plates for help!

Looking for your registration's mailing status?

Already applied for your duplicate registration? To get an update on your document, head to our Status Check page, select "California," and choose your method of contact to get in touch with the CA DMV.

Apply for a Duplicate CA Registration

The thought of going to your local DMV is actually more stressful than the process for a replacement registration itself—the California DMV makes the process relatively simple.

You can replace your California registration card:

  • Online
  • In person.
  • By mail.

We’ve detailed each step for you below.

Replace in Person

To replace your California car registration in person, make an appointment with your local CA DMV office branch to ensure a speedy visit. You’ll need to bring:

While not explicitly required by the DMV, be prepared to also provide proof of identification and residency—your driver’s license should suffice.

Replace by Mail

If you would prefer to mail your replacement request to the California DMV, send all of the items listed above (including payment!) to:

Department of Motor Vehicles
Registration Operations
P.O. Box 942869
Sacramento, CA 94269

Replacement CA Plates & Stickers

If your license plates and stickers are lost, damaged, or stolen, the replacement process is similar to a duplicate registration card—however, you may need to:

  • Bring in the damaged plates if you still have them.
  • Provide a police report, if your items were stolen.

For details, jump over to our California duplicate license plates guide.


REG 156
Application for Replacement Plates, Stickers, Documents
Request replacement license plates, registration stickers, disability placards, disability IDs, and registration documents in California.
DMV 14
Notice of Change of Address
Notifies the California DMV of your new address AND can be used to update your driver's license, registration and tags, and disability parking placards.
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