How to Register a Car in Connecticut DMV

Whether you own a new car or just moved to CT, you’ll need to register your vehicle before legally driving it. The Department of Motor Vehicles (DMV) is responsible for registering all cars in Connecticut. But what does CT car registration entail?

Required Documents

To register your car in CT, you have to submit the required documents to the DMV. The paperwork varies depending on whether:

  • You have a state or out of state title
  • Your car is leased
  • Your vehicle has a lien

Must-have documents include:

Identification Documents

CT DMV registration requires all registrants to present a copy of their identification. Below are the acceptable forms of identification.

CT Residents

Connecticut residents must present one of the following ID documents.

Out of State Residents/ Military

A CT non-resident can use the following forms of identification when registering a car.

  • A valid ID Card
  • A valid Canadian License
  • A US Military Card

People Without Identification

If you lack any form of identification, you must undergo an administrative review when registering a car in CT.

Leased Vehicles

The lessee does not have to show their identification. Instead, they have to present a general Power of Attorney (or DMV’s Special Power of Attorney) form from the leasing company.

Dealer Transactions

You don’t have to show proof of identity if you purchased a vehicle from a licensed dealer. In such cases, the DMV may use the dealer representative’s identification to register vehicle in CT.

Company Names

Corporations, incorporated businesses, and LLCs intending to register a vehicle must submit a power of attorney form. This isn’t a requirement if the person signing is a member of the LLC.

Proof of Insurance

You must present a valid automobile insurance identification card when registering your car at the DMV. If you lack this card, you may use a temporary insurance card.

Bill of Sale

You have to present a bill of sale when registering a recently purchased vehicle.

Ownership Proof

An original title serves as proof of ownership in CT car registration. If you have a lien, you need to request the lien holder to mail the original title to CT DMV. The same applies to leased vehicles.

If the vehicle is from another state, you can use its title, registration from the previous owner, or a letter of registration verification from that state’s DMV.

Steps to Register a Vehicle in CT

All new CT residents have 90 days to transfer their vehicle registration to Connecticut. This requirement takes effect from the date you establish residency.

All vehicle registrations must be done in person at local CT DMV offices. But do you know how to register a car in CT?

Below are the steps you ought to follow.

Step 1: Check for Compliance

The first step is to ensure you don’t have compliance issues. Here are common problems that may deny your vehicle registration.

  • Parking Tickets – CT car registration won’t happen if you have outstanding parking tickets. Ensure you settle ticket obligations in any CT town before attempting to register your car.
  • Property Tax – Your vehicle registration in CT won’t be successful if you have outstanding tax payments. You can get rid of tax delinquency by settling obligations and getting clearance from the tax collector.
  • Emission Testing – All vehicles must be emission compliant at the time of registration. You can check your car’s test date using its Vehicle Identification Number (VIN).
  • Insurance Compliance – CT DMV registration is only possible if you have automobile insurance.
  • Registration Privilege Suspension – You cannot register a new vehicle if Connecticut has suspended your registration privileges.

Step 2: Prepare Relevant Documents

Ensure you have the following registration documents.

  • A valid form of identification
  • Proof of vehicle ownership
  • Completed Form H-13B (registration application)
  • CT vehicle registration payment

Step 3: Take Your Vehicle to an Emissions Test Center

This step is mandatory for all cars with an out-of-state title. If you’re a new CT resident, ensure you take your vehicle to any official emissions test center in Connecticut.

These centers will verify your VIN and subject your car to emission tests. You’ll then receive an inspection report, which you must bring to the DMV office during car registration.

The emission test costs $20, while VIN verification costs $10. If your car fails this test, you’re eligible for another one after 60 days.

Step 4: Visit a DMV Office

CT car registration occurs in DMV locations. Once you have the required documents, you should make an appointment at any local DMV Hub Office or Limited Service Office.

Step 5: Receive Your Title

In most cases, the DMV will mail your title within 30 days of completing registration.

You can apply for a CT temporary registration using the same procedure. You need this registration if your registration has expired and your car needs an emission or safety test.

CT Car Registration Fee

Connecticut vehicle registration fees depend on the type of car you own and its weight. Here’s a breakdown of the charges.

  • Passenger Cars – $120 for three years
  • Commercial vehicles – the price depends on Gross Vehicle Weight Rating but starts at $47 for one year
  • Electric Vehicles – $57 for three years
  • Truck (heavy duty) – $326 for one year
  • Motorhome (camper) – $112.50 for three years

Car registrants may incur the following extra costs.

  • Passport to the Parks fee – $15
  • Administrative fee – $10
  • Clean Air Act Fee – $5
  • Greenhouse Gas Reduction Fee – $10
  • Late fee – $10

You can find the complete list of fees on CT DMV’s page.


Here are answers to more commonly asked questions about car registration:

Do You Need an Appointment to Register a Car in CT?

Yes, you need an appointment from any CT DMV office.

Is There a Grace Period for Car Registration in CT?

New CT residents must register their vehicles within 90 days of establishing residency.

Can I Get a New Registration Online?

No. You must physically register at a DMV office.

Can I Register a Car for Someone Else in CT?

Yes, but you’ll need to have power of attorney.

How Much Does It Cost to Register a Car in CT?

The registration fee depends on the type of car, its weight, and its use. The fee for passenger vehicles is $120 for three years.

Can You Register a Car Without a License in CT?

You can register a car in CT without a license. However, you’ll need to provide other identification documents.