expired registration

What happens if you drive with an expired registration?

Expired Registration – When commuting by road, you must bring certain things with you in your car in other to comply with the law. Failure to comply or satisfy these rules may result in fines and administrative penalties. The major items which the police usually request for when you are pulled over are:

  • A valid driver’s license.
  • Your Proof of liability insurance.
  • Valid registration of the vehicle.

If physical copies of the required documents are not kept in the car, it could lead to a traffic citation and significant fines may result. This applies especially if you drive without valid vehicle registration. However, in some states or jurisdictions, it is possible that you receive a correction ticket (possibly for a registration that has just expired). Below you will find basic information on what happens if you drive with an expired registration of your vehicle?

What happens if you drive with an expired registration?

When you drive with an expired registration, you are likely to receive about $200 ticket for the offense of driving with an expired registration. It all depends on how long the expiry date of the license plate is.

If the expiry date on the registration of your vehicle is less than six months, this will be considered a non-moving crime. However, if your registration has expired for over 6 months, it will be considered a moving violation. One of the consequences of this is that it will add up points on your Driver’s License (DL) and of course, increase your insurance rates.

It is possible that the license plate may be suspended, while you are asked to renew the registration. Failure to do this, you may be required to return the license plate to the local DMV.

You also have the option of returning the plates or risk paying a fine. It is pertinent to note that inspection of vehicle and vehicle registration are completely different and separate things. Many people mix this up. Some think they are good to go as soon as they have got their vehicle inspected and they forget about the registration.

It is also possible that you would be pulled over (even if you do not get a ticket) if the registration sticker behind your vehicle has expired and has not been renewed. However, in the state of Pennsylvania, they no longer follow the sticker rule and now prefer that you keep the registration proof inside the glove compartment.

Other things you should know

If you are caught to be driving without a driver’s license or with invalid insurance, the fines could be more severe.

Since expired tags are an offense (non-moving violation), you may get a ticket even if your car is parked and is left unattended, this is possible provided you are not on private property. If you are stopped twice with an expired registration of over six months, you are likely to face severe penalties up to serving a jail term. However, such offenders generally receive a criminal traffic citation letter and a court appearance notice.