Registration Renewal in Delaware
COVID-19 Effects on Registration Services
In response to the COVID-19 pandemic, state DMVs nationwide have closed office locations, extended license and registration expiration dates, and/or limited the transactions they are processing. If possible, residents should use the DMV's online services to complete any relevant transactions. Follow the DMV's recent updates for the latest information.
Registration Renewal in Delaware
When your vehicle registration expires, you must renew it with the Delaware Division of Motor Vehicles (DMV). You can do so either by mail or in person.
DE Vehicle Registration Renewal Notice
Your renewal notice outlines your eligibility and all requirements for you to renew your DE car registration. The Delaware DMV does not automatically send out registration renewal notices. In order to receive a notification from the DMV, you must register online at the DE DMV website.
You will then be given the option for alerts by e-mail or automated phone messages prior to the expiration date of your DE vehicle registration.
NOTE: You are responsible for renewing your vehicle registration on time, even if you did not receive a registration renewal notice from the Delaware DMV.
How to Renew Your Delaware Vehicle Registration
The Delaware DMV allows you to process your vehicle registration renewal by mail or in person, depending on your eligibility.
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If your registration has expired, the DE DMV will add on a $20 late fee.
IMPORTANT NOTE: If you have any outstanding traffic violations that you have not paid or addressed in court, you will be barred from renewing your vehicle registration until the DMV is notified that these issues have been addressed and corrected. For details, contact your court or your local DMV office.
If you've already renewed your registration, you can check its processing status by contacting the DE DMV.
How to Renew Registration By Mail
To renew your DE vehicle registration by mail, your vehicle must meet all of the following criteria:
- Be 6 years old or newer.
- Weigh less than 10,000 lbs.
- Not require a vehicle inspection.
If your vehicle is eligible for registration renewal by mail, you must:
- Follow the instructions in the registration package that the DMV mails you.
- If your e-mail is on file, your Delaware registration renewal notice will be sent by e-mail.
- Be sure to include a check for the appropriate registration renewal fee (see “Delaware Vehicle Registration Renewal Fees" below).
How to Renew Registration In Person
To renew your DE vehicle registration in person at your local Delaware DMV office, you must bring your:
- Proof of Delaware car insurance.
- Proof of passing a vehicle inspection, if applicable.
- To learn more about vehicle inspections, please visit our Smog & Emission Checks page.
- Odometer reading.
- Delaware driver's license.
- Current vehicle registration certificate.
- Payment for your registration renewal fee (see “Delaware Vehicle Registration Renewal Fees" below).
Delaware Vehicle Registration Renewal Fees
The cost to renew vehicle registration annually in Delaware varies by vehicle type and weight.
- Passenger vehicles: $40.
- Commercial vehicles:
- $40 per year for the first 5,000 lbs.
- $18 for each additional 1,000 lbs.
For a complete list of registration renewal fees, please visit the DE state DMV website.
Other Registration Fees in Delaware:
- Renewal late fee: $20.
- Duplicate registration card: $10.
- Duplicate registration decal: $5.
- Duplicate license plate with decal: $10.
- Duplicate license plate without decal: $5.
Acceptable Payment Methods
Delaware DMV offices accept the following payment methods:
- Money orders.
- Debit or credit cards (e.g., Discover, VISA, MasterCard and American Express).
If you process your registration renewal by mail, you must send a check to the DMV. Do NOT send cash.
NOTE: For added convenience, you may use the drive-thru window to renew your Delaware vehicle registration.
If your vehicle is in its first 7 model years, you will not need a safety or emissions test for your registration renewal. Once your vehicle goes beyond this period, the Delaware DMV will require you to pass the vehicle inspection every 2 years.
Your DE renewal notice will indicate whether you need to complete a vehicle inspection. If you do, you're allowed to have it completed up to 90 days before your renewal date.
For complete information about the general requirements for Delaware vehicle inspections, please visit the DE DMV website.
You may also visit our page about Smog & Emission Checks in Delaware.
Military Member & Out-of-State Renewals
If you're stationed beyond a 250 mile radius of your nearest Delaware DMV office, you can download the Out-of-State Vehicle Inspection Report (Form MV210) online, or request one from the DE DMV Registration Correspondence office.
Take the packet and your vehicle to a nearby repair facility or state-operated inspection lane. Your packet contains instructions for the person inspecting your vehicle to follow.
Upon completion, you must obtain an endorsement from the inspector indicating your vehicle complies with the safety and emission standards in Delaware.
After the inspection, you must mail all of the following documents to the address listed in your Out-of-State Inspection Packet:
- A photocopy of your:
- Delaware driver's license.
- Delaware auto insurance card (must be current).
- The endorsement of your mechanic.
- A self-addressed envelope with your current address (not mandatory, but strongly suggested by the DMV).
- A check or money order for your registration renewal fee (please see “Delaware Vehicle Registration Renewal Fees" above).
Duplicate Registration or License Plate
Replace a Lost, Stolen, or Damaged DE Registration
If your DE car registration certificate is missing or damaged to the extent that it is no longer legible, you may apply for a replacement by visiting any Delaware DMV office with:
- Valid proof of DE car insurance.
- Your license plate number.
- Payment for your $10 duplicate registration card fee (see “Delaware Vehicle Registration Renewal Fees" above).
A Delaware DMV agent will process your replacement registration immediately.
Replace a Lost Stolen or Damaged DE License Plate
If you suspect your license plate was stolen, the Delaware DMV strongly suggests ordering a new license plate number. If you apply for a specialized plate, the DMV will issue a temporary plate until your permanent plate arrives in the mail.
To replace your license plate in Delaware, you must visit your local DE DMV office with: