How To Register a Car in New Jersey

Making a visit to the Department of Motor Vehicles is rarely a good time. But you can make it much easier by preparing yourself with the right documents, fees, and knowledge you’ll need to get your goals accomplished the first time you visit.

If you’re in New Jersey and you’re trying to get your new or new-to-you vehicle registered, you’ll need to follow a couple of guidelines. Let our team at New Jersey State Auto Used Cars walk you through the step-by-step process of registering a car in New Jersey.

What You’ll Need

Many of us go to the DMV knowing that the first visit will likely end up with us being turned away to bring back some document we didn’t know we needed. Let’s try to get rid of that trip by making sure you have all the documents you need before you make your way to the DMV. Here’s a checklist to help you keep track of everything:

How to register your car in New Jersey

We’ll go into these requirements below. Once you’ve collected everything you need to get your registration successfully sent through, schedule an appointment with your local DMV office to make sure you can get in and out with relative ease.

It should be noted that if you’re purchasing your vehicle from a dealership, the dealership should be able to handle this process for you. You’ll generally only go through this process when you’re purchasing from somewhere besides a dealership, renewing an expired registration, or switching between states.


Generally, if you buy from a reputable source, you’ll already have the title in your name by the time you’re finished purchasing your vehicle. However, there are some cases, such as purchasing a vehicle from a private owner, where you might not end up with the title. Before you have your vehicle registered in your name, you’ll need to acquire the title and have your name put on it.

Since there are many reasons why one might not have a title to a vehicle they own, there are many ways to acquire one. Visit the State of New Jersey website’s section on how to get a title for a new vehicle to see what you have to do.

Drivers Moving to New Jersey

If you’re new to New Jersey, you’ll need to have your vehicle inspected after your register it. This is a simple safety check that will help ensure your vehicle is healthy enough to operate on the road. If your vehicle is a model that’s over five years old, you’ll need to get the inspection without 10 days of receiving your registration documents.

Before you register your vehicle, you’ll have to have your vehicle’s title transferred to New Jersey. You’ll also need to get a New Jersey license before your can register your vehicle in the state. Your last to-do item is to get liability insurance accepted by the state before you register.

If you’re going to live in New Jersey for less than six months, you don’t have to register and title your vehicle in the state. If you plan on living in New Jersey longer than that, you have up to 60 days after you establish residency to get your vehicle registered.


A New Jersey driver’s license is the easiest form of identification to use when you’re trying to register a car in the state. However, it’s not required. If you do not have a New Jersey driver’s license and for some reason will not have one, you can use the “6 Points of ID” method to prove you’re who you say you are.

The 6 Points of ID allows you to use multiple documents in place of a New Jersey license. You can find a list of all of the documents accepted in the program on the New Jersey Motor Vehicle Commission website. The idea is that each type of document is worth points and you must collect enough points for them to be a valid form of identification. If you use this method, you’ll also have to have proof of your New Jersey residency and proof of your social security number.


You’ll need to pay several fees during the process of getting your vehicle registered in New Jersey. At the time of this article, it costs $60 for your title fee and an additional $4.50 if you need to transfer an existing license plate to the vehicle you’re registering. The titling fee increases to $85 if you’re registering a financed vehicle with one lien and $110 if it has two liens. You will also have to pay a sales tax fee. These fees can be paid with credit, check, money order, and cash.

You will also have to pay a registration fee during this process. The registration fee depends on the age and the weight of your vehicle. If you want to get a better idea of how much the registration fee will be for your vehicle, you can use the registration fee calculator from the New Jersey government website.

Before You Go

Before you go to the DMV, be sure you use the checklist above to see if you have everything you need. You don’t have to go to the DMV to request documents you’ll need for the process — you can simply print them off at home or at a public facility with a printer, such as a library. Schedule an appointment with the DMV for a smoother experience.

We hope that this guide helps you get your vehicle what you need to be legal on the road. Our team at New Jersey State Auto Used Cars in Jersey City, New Jersey, is always here to answer your questions about your vehicle should you ever need a friend to ask. And if you need a new ride, we can help you find what you’re looking for. Contact our expert team today to get started with finding your next favorite car.