Skip navigation

Register a New or Used Vehicle


3 Ways to Renew Your Registration

There are three ways to renew your registration/plates without having to visit a Denver Motor Vehicle office. The City & County of Denver has made the process even better by removing all convenience fees for credit card and electronic check transactions. In other words, it will not cost you anything extra to use one of the renewal methods mentioned on the back of the newly designed Renewal Mailer:

1. Renew Online:

Please visit https://www.denvergov.org/pocketgov/#/dmv to renew online. Not all plate types will qualify and the ability to renew online depends on whether you need proof of insurance or an emissions test. If you are unable to renew online please call 311 because you may still be able take advantage of the other methods we offer.

2. Renew by Phone:

Simply call 311 to see if you are eligible to renew by phone. Please have your registration information and your credit card or checking account information available.

3. Renew by Mail:

You can also use the newly designed Renewal Mailer to renew by mail. The new renewal notice includes an envelope for your convenience and the postage is paid. No more searching for an envelope and a stamp to send off your renewal!

I Need to Register My:

If you are a Denver County resident who has recently purchased a vehicle (car, truck, SUV, or motor home) from a private party, you have 60 days to register your vehicle at one of our Denver County DMV branch locations. If you are not a Denver County resident, please visit the  State of Colorado DMV website to locate your branch office.

 

Inspect Your Title

Before you purchase a vehicle from a private party, be sure to inspect the front of the original title document to be sure it is clear of lienholders on the front of the title and properly signed by the seller.

REGISTRATION CHECKLIST FOR A VEHICLE PURCHASED FROM PRIVATE PARTY

You must register in person at a Motor Vehicle office in the county where you reside. For information about where to register outside Denver County, visit the State of Colorado DMV Website. Visit our DMV branch offices page for Denver County DMV locations, hours and directions.

To shorten your wait and ensure same day service at the counter, please come prepared with the following documentation:

☑️  New owner identification (secure and verifiable) or designated power of attorney.

Anyone other than a named owner must present a completed and notarized Form DR2175 Power of Attorney and their own identification (secure and verifiable)

☑️  Vehicle title. 

Vehicle title must be properly endorsed by the previous owner.

1. Sign title. Once you have closed the deal on the sale of a vehicle, you must transfer the title to the new owner by properly endorsing the title (see how to properly endorse a title). 

2. Remove plates. By Colorado State Law, sellers must retain their own plates before the buyer drives away. If plates are left on the vehicle when transferred to a new owner, you could be liable for traffic tickets and other legal problems that are connected with the plate number—and with you. If you forgot to remove your plates, you must report them lost or stolen.

Buyer Responsibilities

If you are buying a car from a private party, you may first want to learn as much as you can about the history of the vehicle and its title, before you sign any documents, by obtaining a vehicle history report online. Within 60 days upon sale of a motor vehicle, the buyer must either register the vehicle or present the certificate of title with an application for title to the Denver County DMV (we serve Denver residents only).

1.  Endorse title. Make sure the seller properly endorses the title over to you in order to avoid problems at the DMV. (See how to properly endorse a title.)

2.  Complete Bill of Sale. Have the seller provide you with a signed and dated Bill of Sale, including your name, the purchase price, the VIN, and the year and make of the vehicle.

3. Obtain temporary tags. Obtain temporary tag (permit) in order to operate your newly purchased vehicle on roadways legally. See below for more details on operation of an unregistered vehicle.

4.  Operation of an unregistered vehicle. A buyer of a vehicle may operate a vehicle on the highway prior to registering the vehicle or obtaining a temporary permit under the following conditions:

  • The buyer has purchased the motor vehicle within the last 36 hours from a person who is not a licensed motor vehicle dealer.
  • The vehicle was purchased either on a Saturday, on a Sunday, on a legal holiday, or between 5p.m. and 8 a.m.
  • The vehicle is being driven from the place where the seller stored the vehicle to the place where the buyer intends to store the vehicle. 
  • The buyer must carry in the vehicle the bill  of sale that identifies the vehicle by year, make and VIN and shows the time and date of sale signed by both the buyer and the seller.
  • Proof of insurance.


5.
  Register your vehicle.

NOTE:

To register a new or used vehicle you just purchased, you will need to supply additional information such as proof of insurance, enhanced emissions test and other crucial documents. 

☑️  Bill of sale.

Bill of sale is recommended but not required unless there was an alteration to the purchase price or purchase date listed on the title.

☑️  Emissions test.

When you purchase a vehicle through a private party, or receive a vehicle through family inheritance or as a gift, you are required to have a new emissions test, even if the current inspection report still has time on it. Visit Air Care Colorado for exceptions to this rule. For emissions testing locations visit Air Care Colorado.

☑️ Odometer reading.

If you plan to register a vehicle and transfer a title into your name, you must provide a current and accurate odometer reading. For vehicles older than 10 years, an odometer reading is not necessary.

☑️  Proof of automobile insurance coverage. 

Insurance card, copy of insurance policy or letter from your insurance company on the company's letterhead including a description of the vehicle with the following information: year, make, model, vehicle identification number (VIN),effective date and expiration date of the policy.

☑️  Vehicle identification number (VIN) verification. 

VIN verification is required if the seller has an out-of-state title. or the vehicle is purchased outside Colorado. A VIN inspector must complete a Verification Vehicle Identification Number form (DR 2698 from Colorado Department of Revenue). Denver Motor Vehicle will perform VIN verifications for $20.00 per vehicle. Learn more...

☑️  License plates. 

When purchasing a vehicle from a private party, the seller must by Colorado State Law retain their own plates. Learn more about about how to obtain a temporary tag, or how to operate a vehicle prior to registering a vehicle.

☑️  Payment. 

Learn more about title and registration fees so that you arrive to our office prepared. Also see fees for specialty and personalized (vanity) plates.

**Note: Expect your new Colorado title to be mailed to you within 4 - 6 weeks upon registration of your vehicle.

If you are a Denver County resident who has recently purchased a vehicle (car, truck, SUV, or motor home) from a dealership, you must register your vehicle at one of our Denver County DMV branch locations. If you are not a Denver County resident, please visit the  State of Colorado DMV website to locate your branch office.

FINANCED PURCHASES THROUGH A DEALERSHIP

When you purchase a vehicle from a dealership and will be making payments, the following will take place:

 

  1. The dealer will forward your title paperwork for processing to the motor vehicle office in the county where you reside. 
  2. The dealer will also provide you with temporary tags to drive the vehicle while the paperwork is being processed.
  3. After the title paperwork has been processed by the Denver Motor Vehicle Division you should receive a Title Complete Notice* via U.S. Postal mail service indicating that you can purchase license plates and register your vehicle.
  4. Upon receipt of a Title Complete Notice or verification that your title paperwork has been processed, you may register your vehicle over the phone by dialing 311 or visit any of our branch offices to purchase license plates and register your vehicle. Be prepared to pay the appropriate licensing fees and ownership tax.
  5. Bring the following documentation to one of our DMV branch locations:

CASH PURCHASES THROUGH A DEALERSHIP

You must come into one of our DMV branch offices to register your newly purchased vehicle. Below is a checklist detailing the types of documents a dealer may give you during the cash purchase of a vehicle. All documents supplied by the dealer should be brought with you when you come into our offices.

☑️ New owner identification (secure and verifiable) or designated power of attorney.

Anyone other than a named owner must present a completed and notarized Form DR2175 Power of Attorney and their own identification (secure and verifiable)

☑️ Emissions test.

New Denver County residents must show proof of a Colorado vehicle emissions test. For emissions testing locations visit Air Care Colorado.

☑️ Proof of automobile insurance coverage. 

Insurance card, copy of insurance policy or letter from your insurance company on the company's letterhead including a description of the vehicle with the following information: year, make, model, vehicle identification number (VIN),effective date and expiration date of the policy.

☑️ Purchase receipts and paperwork from dealer. 

If you have not received a Title Complete Notice from the DMV in the mail, you can still register your vehicle by visiting one of our DMV branch offices (Denver residents only) by bringing in the title and all of your original purchase documents from the dealer (carbon copies are not permissable). 

☑️ Payment. 

Learn more about title and registration fees so that you arrive to our office prepared. Also see fees for specialty and personalized (vanity) plates.

If you are a Denver County resident who recently inherited a vehicle (car, truck, SUV, or motor home), you have 60 days to register your vehicle at one of our Denver County DMV branch locations. If you are not a Denver County resident, please visit the State of Colorado DMV website to locate your branch office.

CHECKLIST FOR A VEHICLE RECEIVED THROUGH INHERITANCE AND SMALL ESTATE PROCEEDINGS

You must register in person at a Motor Vehicle office in the county where you reside. For information about where to register outside Denver County, visit the State of Colorado DMV Website. Visit our DMV branch offices page for Denver County DMV locations, hours and directions.

To shorten your wait and ensure same day service at the counter, please come prepared with the following documentation:

☑️ New owner identification. 

Bring your owner identification (secure and verifiable) or designated power of attorney completed and notarized Form DR2175 and your own identification (secure and verifiable), to one of Denver's DMV branch offices (Denver residents only).

☑️ Death certificate.

☑️ Court order.

A copy of the court order such as the Letters of Testamentary appointing you:

  1. personal representative;
  2. executor of estate; or
  3. original Small Estates Proceedings.

☑️ Title signed by court appointed representative and / or surviving owners. 

  1. When a single person is listed on the title, bring the title in the decedents name (the "decedent" is the person who died), signed by the representative named on court papers or Small Estates Proceedings, in the Seller's Signature area of the title.
  2. When two owners names appear on the title and Joint Tenancy with Rights of Survivorship does not appear on the title, the title must be signed by the representative named on court papers or Small Estates Proceedings, and the other surviving owner in the Seller's Signature area of the title.
  3. When two owners names are listed on the title and appear with Joint Tenancy with Rights of Survivorship, the title must be signed by the surviving owner only in the Seller's Signature area of the title.

☑️ Emissions test.

When you inherit a vehicle or receive a vehicle as a gift, you are required to have a new emissions test, even if the current inspection report still has time on it. Please visit Air Care Colorado for exceptions to this rule. For emissions testing locations visit Air Care Colorado.

☑️ Odometer reading.

If you plan to register a vehicle and transfer a title into your name, you must provide a current and accurate odometer reading. For vehicles older than 10 years, an odometer reading is not necessary.

☑️ Proof of automobile insurance coverage. 

Insurance card, copy of insurance policy or letter from your insurance company on the company's letterhead including a description of the vehicle with the following information: year, make, model, vehicle identification number (VIN),effective date and expiration date of the policy.

☑️ Vehicle identification number (VIN) verification. 

VIN verification is required if the seller has an out-of-state title or the vehicle is from outside Colorado. A VIN inspector must complete a VIN verification Form DR2698. Denver Motor Vehicle will perform VIN verifications for a nominal fee of $ 20.00 per vehicle.

☑️ Payment. 

Learn more about title and registration fees so that you arrive to our office prepared. Also see fees for specialty and personalized (vanity) plates.

**Note: Expect your new Colorado title to be mailed to you within 4 - 6 weeks of registration.

If you are a Denver County resident who recently received a vehicle (car, truck, SUV, or motor home) as a gift, you have 60 days to register your vehicle at one of our Denver County DMV branch locations. If you are not a Denver County resident, please visit the State of Colorado DMV website to locate your branch office.

REGISTRATION CHECKLIST FOR A VEHICLE RECEIVED AS A GIFT

You must register in person at a Motor Vehicle office in the county where you reside. For information about where to register outside Denver County, visit the State of Colorado DMV Website. Visit our DMV branch offices page for Denver County DMV locations, hours and directions.

To shorten your wait and ensure same day service at the counter, please come prepared with the following documentation:

☑️ New owner identification (secure and verifiable) or designated power of attorney.

Anyone other than a named owner must present a completed and notarized Form DR2175 Power of Attorney and their own identification (secure and verifiable)

☑️ Vehicle title. 

Vehicle title must be properly endorsed by previous owner.

☑️ Emissions test.

When you receive a vehicle through family inheritance or as a gift, you are required to have a new emissions test even if the current inspection report still has time on it. Please visit Air Care Colorado for exceptions to this rule. For emissions testing locations visit Air Care Colorado.

☑️ Odometer reading.

If you plan to register a vehicle and transfer a title into your name, you must provide a current and accurate odometer reading. For vehicles older than 10 years, an odometer reading is not necessary.

☑️ Proof of automobile insurance coverage. 

Insurance card, copy of insurance policy or letter from your insurance company on the company's letterhead including a description of the vehicle with the following information: year, make, model, vehicle identification number (VIN),effective date and expiration date of the policy.

☑️ Vehicle identification number (VIN) verification. 

VIN verification is required if the vehicle is from out-of-state. A VIN inspector must complete a VIN verification Form DR2698. Denver Motor Vehicle will perform VIN verifications for a nominal fee of $ 20.00 per vehicle. Learn more...

☑️ License plates. 

When purchasing a vehicle from a private party, the seller must by Colorado State Law retain their own plates. Learn more about about how to obtain a temporary tag, or how to operate a vehicle prior to registering a vehicle.

☑️ Payment. 

To be tax exempt at the time of establishing a title, the gift must come from an immediate family member and it must be given without consideration. Assumption of debt would subject the vehicle to sales tax. Additionally, all vehicles are subject to ongoing ownership tax payable annually at registration renewal time.


**Note: Expect your new Colorado title to be mailed to you within 4 - 6 weeks upon registration of your vehicle.

If you have recently moved to Colorado and you live in Denver County, you must register your vehicle at one of our DMV branch offices within 90 days from establishing Colorado residency. For information about where to register outside Denver County, visit the State of Colorado DMV website. If you are an existing colorado resident, but are moving into Denver County, see the registration checklist below. 

Colorado residency is established when you meet one of the following three criteria:

  1. You have obtained employment in Colorado.
  2. You own or operate a business in Colorado.
  3. You have resided in Colorado continuously for 90 days.
 
Not sure you live in Denver County? Use the address checker below to verify your county of residence: 
 

REGISTRATION CHECKLIST FOR OUT OF STATE VEHICLES

You must register in person at a Motor Vehicle office in the county where you reside. For information about where to register outside Denver County, visit the State of Colorado DMV Website. Visit our DMV branch offices page for Denver County DMV locations, hours and directions.

To shorten your wait and ensure same day service at the counter, please come prepared with the following documentation:

☑️ New owner identification (secure and verifiable) or designated power of attorney.

Anyone other than a named owner must present a completed and notarized Form DR2175 Power of Attorney and their own identification (secure and verifiable)

☑️ One of the following three types of documents:

Vehicle title in your name; or an original out-of-state registration no more than six months expired; or a vehicle record history on state letterhead from previous state of residence. 

☑️ Emissions test.

New Denver County residents must show proof of a passing Colorado vehicle emissions test. If you have recently purchased a vehicle, you are required to have a new emissions test, even if the current inspection report from the previous owner still has time on it. Vehicles that are 7 model years old or newer are exempt from emissions requirements. Newly purchased vehicles still qualify for the exemption as long as there are at least 12 months remaining in the exemption. For emissions testing locations visit Air Care Colorado.

☑️ Proof of automobile insurance coverage. 

Insurance card, copy of insurance policy or letter from your insurance company on the company's letterhead including a description of the vehicle with the following information: year, make, model, vehicle identification number (VIN),effective date and expiration date of the policy.

New residents to the State of Colorado must have a complying insurance policy on their vehicle pursuant to C.R.S. 42-3-105(1)(d) before the vehicle can be registered in Colorado. Out of state insurance policies cannot be accepted.

☑️ Vehicle identification number (VIN) verification. 

VIN verification is required if the seller has an out-of-state title. or the vehicle is purchased outside Colorado. A VIN inspector must complete a Verification Vehicle Identification Number form (PDF) (DR 2698 from Colorado Department of Revenue). Denver Motor Vehicle will perform VIN verifications for $20.00 per vehicle. 

☑️ Payment. 

Learn more about ownership tax and licensing fees so that you arrive to our office prepared. Also see fees for ordering specialty and personalized (vanity) plates.

**Note: Expect your new Colorado title to be mailed to you within 4 - 6 weeks upon registration of your vehicle.

Resident Colorado Military Personnel

If you are a resident of the City and County of Denver currently serving in-state in the military, simply follow the same registration process outlined for new or used vehicle registration and registration renewals.

If you are stationed out of state and wish to register a purchased car in Colorado, the easiest way to do so is by calling the Colorado DMV. They will help walk you through specific steps to register your vehicle. You may contact them at (720) 865-4600.

Non-residents Stationed in Colorado

If you’re an out-of-state military personnel who is actively stationed in Colorado, you may:

  1. Continue to renew your vehicle registration with your home state; or
  2. Register your vehicle in Colorado if you’re going to be in Colorado for an extended period of time following Denver's New Colorado Resident Vehicle Registration procedures.

Registration Renewal

Military personnel may choose to renew registration in the state from which they originally registered their vehicle or their current location. 

Emissions Waiver and Extensions

Military personnel who are temporarily out of state, may file for an emission extension. For rules and regulations on how to file and other special circumstances, visit the State of Colorado website.

 

Motor Vehicle Locations, Hours, and Wait-times

Trending Services

Not Registered to Vote?

Register to vote, find your registration, check your registration status and more!

Looking for Driver's License Info?

Denver County Motor Vehicle Offices Do Not Provide Driver's License Services.

Driver's licenses, ID cards, and driving records may be obtained at state offices only.
Visit below to learn more:

 
 


Hours:

Monday, Tuesday, Thursday, Friday:
8 a.m. - 4:30 p.m.
Wednesday:
8:30 a.m. - 4:30 p.m.

Locations & Wait Times
 


Contact Information

Phone: 720-865-4600

Report a Problem | Ask a Question

 

Denver Motor Vehicle Division - Department of Finance logo