View Full Version : Temp tags/registration for new(ish) car?

05-11-2009, 04:54 PM
So I've found a used bimmer I want to buy from a private seller out of state, and I have no idea how to deal with tags for it (I'm in MD). The MVA's website was not helpful (imagine that??!!). Yeah, it seems like a bit of a dumb@<hidden> question, but really- can anyone tell me how to deal with tags so I can get it home and get it inspected? Someone else has gotta have done this before.

John in VA
05-11-2009, 08:02 PM
I tried to get a temporary tag for a car purchased in MD, to bring back to VA - only a dealer can get these. I put one of my plates on it and drove it back across the river.

05-11-2009, 08:51 PM
The car's in VA. I'm thinking I may 'borrow' tags from the car it will be replacing, just so I can get it in the driveway.

05-11-2009, 08:59 PM
That's probably what I would do, but you could just run without, and have a bill of sale handy. Having some insurance ID cards might be helpful too. I don't think a cop would give you too much trouble seeing as you just bought it... I've always either borrowed the POs tags or just run without.

05-12-2009, 10:07 AM
i usually just put the tags from one of my cars, have a bill of sale/title, insurance cards ready in case you are stopped by the popo.

1996 328ti
05-12-2009, 11:33 AM
I'd probably have the insurance paperwork with me too.
Fortunately my two last cars the owner let me hold onto the tags long enough for me to inspect and register. One was out of state.

05-12-2009, 07:47 PM
The MVA doesn't make it easy or explain it at all on the website, but you can get a temporary registration, but not temporary tags. It's sort of backwards from what you'd think.

The purpose of the 30-day registration is to facilitate the completion of the mandatory state inspection and subsequent repairs. I had to do this when I bought my 325is in Virginia. I registered the car and was given the tags, but the stickers were only good for a month. It's a pain if you're trying to buy the car and bring it home in one trip because you need to take the title in first.

I was supposed to go back after a month with the completed inspection form. I never made it due to work commitments and the fact the car was coming up on 20 years of age and I could register it as Historic without the inspection anyway.

05-13-2009, 09:06 AM
VA at least makes it easy to pay $5 to get a transit tag, which you just print out on the computer and is good for 3 days so you can buy the car and transport it back. I've done it twice to get cars home and registered. Once you have the title, NoVA allows a 3 month registration period to get the car to pass emissions, but you can't renew for 2 years til you do.


05-17-2009, 07:55 PM
Got it home safe, thanks for the advice. The tags from the M3 did it- I figured since the tags were actually from a blue BMW, it shouldn't have been much trouble.

Off to the MVA first thing to get it legit.