How Can I Register A Car In A Different State Than My License in 2023?

Can I register a car in a different state than my license? Is it possible to register a vehicle in several states?

Yes, you can. Several people live in two states. Let me give an example here. You are staying in San Diego, and then for five months, you live in Nevada.

San Diego can be your first State of residence, and you might have a car registered in San Diego.

However, people who live in, let’s say Utah but have a home in Las Vegas or Arizona can register their vehicles in Utah and have several drivers’ licenses.

And they would visit Vegas anytime they wish. The truth is that you can register your vehicle in different states, but you must recognize various state regulations.

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Can I Register A Car in A Different State Than My License?

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For convenience’s sake, and the desire to be law-abiding, one should ask; can I register a car in a state different state than my license?

All states in the United States except New Hampshire demand insurance policy before vehicle registration begins which you can learn more here.

However, each State has its specific state requirements. So, it is possible to get your license in Alaska and register your car in Colorado. Your vehicle should be exclusive to your home address and the State you stay right now.

That State would appear on your license. Failing to register your car at your current address can be considered a fraud; that is why this article is for those having two separate houses in different states.

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How To Get License

For someone thinking of getting a car, you should be worried about how to get your license first. Getting a license is quite simple because in the U.S.

Immigration and Customs Enforcement offer much information about the U.S. driver’s license. You are to go to the DMV with the following information:

  • A valid passport
  • Address Proof
  • Your Social Card with a valid SSN or related documents. If you are an international student, some states may ask you to prove that you do not have an SSN. Your advisor should be able to take care of that. You can get your driver’s license as an international student.
  • Certificate of Eligibility for Nonimmigrant Student Status (Form I-20/Form DS-2020
  • Arrival/Departure Record (Form I-94)

Getting a U.S. driver license would require you to wait for ten days. During this process, the database should sync in your information to help you avoid a probably three-week waiting time.

90% of states in U.S. demand that you pass a driving test. You would be provided with a studying guide for practical and theory also. After passing this test, you would receive a learner’s permit.

The learner’s permit allows you to practice driving under supervision. Some states require an amount of practice while others overlook it. The following are the procedures:

  • Visit a DMV office. You should make a prior appointment for a quicker service
  • Submit the completed application form and your fee. Only the original.
  • Your thumbprint comes into the system.
  • Your social security and, proof of your date of birth.
  • Original passport
  • You would take a vision test
  • And the written test.
  • Call the number 1-800-777-0133 between the hours of 8 a.m. and 5 p.m. Monday-Friday.
  • You are to present proof of financial responsibility
  • In California, you are to have insurance requirements.

Different USA States Rules About Two License 

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There are different State’s rules about having two licenses. First, every State has its own rules.

However, there are a significant number of similarities between the requirements of one state and that of the other.

In California, it is a criminal offense because the Code 12511 of the State explicitly said that “no individual shall have in his or her possession or otherwise beneath his or her control more than one driver’s license.”

North Carolina frowns against it, California, and South Dakota is also against having two licenses. If you find yourself in California, you can always make use of your California Identification.

The truth is that a driver’s license is a solid form of I.D., and the rule in all of the United States is that “one driver-one driver’s license.

New Jersey and New York are two states working hand in hand to identify Identity theft and violations. No state allows two driver’s licenses.

In 2010 the government of New York and New Jersey tracked down 15,000 license violators. Some have furthered this fraudulent act by collecting disability benefits with the fake license.

Sometimes, you may be doubting the possibility of staying in one state. Your job may make your frequent business trips and others.

For some states, you do not need to get a driver’s license at all because you are not staying for long.

But, when you begin to set up for housekeeping, and you are paying taxes there as well, then it is time to apply for a driver’s license.

Non-residents in Alabama are to register their vehicles in the state DMV within the first month of your stay. In Alaska, the non-resident is allowed to operate a car with another state’s regulation.

In Connecticut, you have 60 days to register your vehicle after entering the State. You will need to provide proof of insurance, payment fees, proof of ownership, and protection.

Florida is very strict. You have your car registered within ten days of entering, or you get a ticket or an arrest.

Registration requires you to be employed in the State and have your child enrolled in a public school.

People in Oregon are benevolent, and you are not required to obtain a new registration. You have up to 6 months to get a new record for your car.

How To Solve The Problem

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Since having two licenses is a criminal offense, how can we solve the problem? First, you need enough information concerning the State you want to visit.

And walk within the law. Know the visiting window and be prepared with your Identity card.

Places like Washington doesn’t require you to have another license and car registration.

However, in Washington, D.C. Non-residents are allowed to drive their vehicle for up to 30 days, and you can pay an additional fee, which can get you 180 days more.

The 180 days package can only be used once in a year. If you’re on vacation in Wyoming, you can drive your non-resident car and flaunt your out-of-state plates for 120 days.

Places like Virginia and Oregon can allow you to drive your out-of-state vehicle for six months until registration.

In New Mexico, you can operate your non-resident vehicle for up to 180 days without having to register. In New Jersey, you can file for temporary non-resident vehicle registration.

This is a perfect place where you can technically have “two driver’s licenses” because you would retain the former one and still drive freely with the temporal non-resident registration.

If you work in Montana and you stay in New York, you can present your out-of-state vehicle license registered in the county’s office, and you are right.

Mississippi is the only state in the U.S. that doesn’t need proof of car insurance when applying for vehicle registration.

In Massachusetts, they have no grace period for compulsory vehicle registration, so you get your license as soon as you become a resident.

However, any car owned by a non-resident but is registered doesn’t need to be registered anymore.

College students and military members staying in Louisiana are the ones who can maintain their out-of-state license and registration.

If I misplace my license, how can I get it? 

After going through the stress and stringent process of getting your driver’s license, but it gets missing. How can you get it? This cuts in two.

If your license gets missing outside the State of your registration. And it gets lost inside the State of your booking.

Replacing your misplaced license in-state is simple. You can apply for a replacement by visiting the Secretary of State’s office.

Present identification to confirm your identity and all other documents you had with you when you were doing the initial registration. An online replacement through ExpressSOS, placed at your request is also available.

If you have a valid Social Security number, you can go online and click on “Replace driver’s license” from the ExpressSOS page. You can edit and submit your driver’s license.

In case you misplace your license outside the State, you can complete a Duplicate Driver License Application online, and you can mail or fax to the Department of State Special Services Branch asking for a temporary replacement.

Then you can complete the form and pay a minute sum via credit card transfer. You must have your SSN. A letter of ineligibility can stand in for you if you do not have a Social Security Number.

That letter proves your legal presence just like the social security number. The online option through ExpressSOS is available for you also.

You would need to complete an application of Duplicate driver license if your actual license got missing outside the U.S. A valid SSN remains the essential document that can get you all you need.

For an enhanced license, you should contact the U.S. embassy wherever the country you find yourself. In some cases, your driver’s license can act as a travel document.

Different Related Problems

Just some days ago, thirteen days into the New Year, the U.S. Driver license Network went down. This allowed the DMV Offices to slow down across the nation.

It happened because the network that connects motor vehicles and agencies across the United States to each other was offline.

The problem prevailed till 2.p.m when it was solved. Well, that is just one of the many related issues you can face when trying to get your license.

Even though occurrences like this happen rarely, the DMV office is filled with people always to the brim. Book an appointment so that you wouldn’t be frustrated at the end.

One major problem is the waiting/car ticket you get. Can a ticket in another state affect your driver’s license?

All forty-eight states in the U.S. belong to either “Driver’s License Compact” or “Non-resident Violator Compact”.

Michigan and Wisconsin are the only states not belonging to one of the associations mentioned.

So, if you get off a ticket in one of these states, Michigan and Wisconsin, you are free.

However, never try the same with other countries because they will relay the information on your ticket to the other school.

What situations can cause rejection of a driver’s license?

  • If the driver is driving under the influence of alcohol or drugs
  • If the driver refuses to take a blood-alcohol test
  • Driving without liability can also revoke your license.
  • No one loves a reckless driver.
  • You are skipping any driving-related fine.
  • If you decide to ignore the traffic summons, then you can kiss your license goodbye.
  • If you leave the scene of an injured in an accident, then you don’t deserve a license.
  • Over speeding

What if you are caught, making use of suspended license what would happen?

You would go to jail. During that time, he/she can get off the hook quickly.

Young Adults who cross state lines always rely on their in-state license it says 15-80

You can only do things the right way. There is no need to register a car in a state different from the one you stay, although it is possible to have two car licenses, it is illegal.


Whether you are planning on working in a different state, going on a vacation, or your work requires you to shuffle between two states, act within the law.

Understand the rule of the second State. It would save you stress and unnecessary worries from the authorities.

Never get stranded if you have misplaced your license because you can always ask for a temporary or request for a replacement.