How Long Does it Take to Get License Plates in USA From Dealer – (And Why)?

Exact Answer: Within 30 days

Time taken before you get a license plate in the USA from a dealer will depend on a few variables. You should note that you are not allowed to drive on public roads until the car is registered correctly.

However, when purchasing a vehicle from a car dealership, they will provide you with a temporary registration as you wait for the license plate. In that case, we shall discuss how long does it take to get a license plate in USA from a dealer.

How Long Does it Take to Get License Plates in USA From Dealer


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How long does it take to get a license plate in USA from dealer

As previously stated, a few variables will affect the duration taken before getting your license plate. In some states in the US, you will complete the entire car registration at the dealer and receive your license plate in your mail some weeks later.

However, some states will require you to visit the Department of Motor Vehicle, also known as the DMV in order for you to finalize registration.

In most cases, for new cars, you will require a page to register the vehicle. However, most of the time is spent at the DMV; this is carried out by the dealer. You will receive your license plate within 30 days.

Essential documents for registering your car

If you are registering a vehicle for the first time, there are some few necessary documents that you will require such as;

  1. The sales tax payment proof.
  2. An insurance proof, especially in states where car insurance is legally required.
  3. A driver’s license.
  4. A non-driver identification card
  5. The application form for registering your vehicle
  6. A proof indicating your car has passed a safety inspection

You can as well consider renewing your registration via mail by verifying your personal information and the car’s information as well. Here is the information you will require when renewing your registration online;

  1. The vehicle identification number for your vehicle
  2. Your car’s license plate number
  3. The number of your driver’s license.
  4. The details of your car insurance.
  5. The current registration card of your vehicle.

You should check on the transport agency or DMV website of your state to get all the essential information you will require renewing your registration.

How much does it cost to renew a vehicle registration?

The registration fee paid to the transportation agency or DMV in your state is used by various organizations to continue offering vital services. These income are used in funding state highway patrols or city and county services.

Registration fee differs from one state to the other, and they are calculated differently. Some states have a flat rate registration fee for all types of cars, while other states calculate the registration based on various aspects.

For instance, in Kentucky, the registration fee for vehicles is $21, whereas, in Montana, the registration fee is $217 for vehicles under four years.


When purchasing a new car, often, the dealership will help you register the vehicle and obtain your license plate. However, this differs from one state to the other.


Last Updated : 23 February, 2024

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