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Car Registration in Ohio: All you need to know

  • Car Registration
  • Sara Sam
  • 6 minutes

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Sign You can never run short of things to do or see in Ohio. From Cedar Point, Rock and Roll Hall of Fame, and Pro Football Hall of Fame, this place will urge you to be always on the move. To have the freedom to drive around, one must complete their vehicle registration with the Ohio Bureau of Motor Vehicles (OBMV).

So how do you register your car in Ohio? How much is car registration in Ohio? Read all about it here.

Where do I register my car in Ohio?

Ohio Bureau of Motor Vehicles (OBMV) is the place where car owners and residents of Ohio can register their cars. OMBV requires that all vehicles have a valid registration to operate on the roads of Ohio.

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What are the prerequisites to register your car if you are new to Ohio?

Moving for a new job, buying a new house, and registering to vote makes you a new resident in Ohio. If you own a car, then it is mandatory to title and register it with OBMV within 30 days of establishing residency.

However, getting a title for the car must be done at a county clerk’s office before proceeding with the formalities of registering your car.

The residents must possess the following documents before proceeding with their car registration.

  • Valid Ohio driver’s license
  • Vehicle Identification Number (VIN) inspection which verifies the legal ownership of the vehicle.
  • Completed vehicle emissions test
  • Ohio vehicle title with Ohio clerk of court’s seal.
  • An active car insurance policy acts as proof of financial responsibility.

How do I register my car in Ohio?

The car owners with the obtained title must go to the local deputy registrar’s agency. One must present the proof of ownership or the title known as Certificate of Title or Memorandum Certificate of Title.

If the car has multiple owners and all of them cannot be present during the registration, then a power of attorney is required.

If the car is leased then, a Power of Attorney for Ohio Vehicle Registration (Form BMV 5736) must be submitted. A valid photo ID which can be the Ohio Driver’s License and proof of social security number is mandatory in this case.

Once the necessary documents are submitted and verified, the Ohio vehicle registration fees must be paid. After this, the owners will be given a temporary permit to legally drive while the license plates will be mailed to the owner’s address.

Are there any other procedures for car registration if you are new to Ohio?

Verification of VIN number

This can be done at an out-of-state vehicle inspection at any Deputy Registrar’s Office. This inspection will confirm that you are the owner and that the vehicle is not stolen.

Application for Ohio title

The application can be completed with the VIN verification and the vehicle’s original title from the previous state. This also requires the payment of an Out-of-state Inspection Cost and Title Certificate cost of $5 and $15 respectively.

If you have a loan on your car, then it can act as a lien holder by holding the title of your vehicle. To avoid this, one must send them a transfer request form through your local BMV office. This will cost $15.

What are the different fees that need to be paid in the state for vehicle registration?

Apart from the registration fees, there are permissive taxes which vary by the district, the Deputy Registrar license agency fees, and special license plate fees. The registration fees must be paid at the deputy registrar’s office once all the paperwork has been submitted.

  • Registration Fee: $31-$35

In case you require personalized plates, it will cost around $60.

Other applicable/optional fees

  • Plate or registration transfer: $6
  • Replace or exchange 1 license plate: $12
  • Replace or exchange 2 license plates: $13.25
  • Temporary registration (45 days): $20
  • Out-of-state vehicle inspection: $5
  • Mailing fee for plates (if applicable): current mail rates

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How do I register my car by mail in Ohio?

If you are a resident of Ohio but are away during the purchase of your car, then you can register it through the mail. These out-of-state registrations can be done once you receive your Ohio vehicle title.

  • Obtain Ohio title
  • Download and fill out Form BMV 4625 which is the Application for Out-of-State Registration by Mail.
  • To receive the license plate, one must include the out-of-state address in the form.
  • Enclose the original Ohio title
  • Include necessary paperwork like VIN inspection, emissions inspection, proof of insurance, and fee payment.
  • Sign Form BMV 5736 if the car is leased, by the leasing company and the resident.

How do I renew my registration in Ohio?

The state allows you to register your vehicle for a period of one, two, or five years. One needs to renew their registration with the state before expiry to avoid fines. It will cost $34.50 to renew your car registration in Ohio. If your registration has expired for 30 days or more, then you will have to pay $10.

The OBMV allows the option of renewing the registration online, by phone, or in person.

  • For renewing online, one can go to the Ohio online renewal page. To proceed with online renewal, you’ll require the last four social security number, license plate number, and the required fee.
  • One can also call in at 866-868-0006. This is followed by entering the social security number, and details for making the payment.
  • To renew the registration in person, one has to go to the Deputy Registrar’s office with the renewal notice received in the mail. You’ll also have to submit the insurance proof, vehicle title, authorization to register, and the payment of fees.

Certain counties like Cuyahoga, Geauga, Lake, Lorain, Medina, Portage, and Summit require an emission test to be performed before the renewal of your car registration.

Can I add someone to my car registration in Ohio?

Yes, you can add another person to your Ohio car registration. Also, the Ohio Motor Vehicle Power of Attorney Form BMV 3771 can allow someone other than the vehicle owner to apply for and receive a title on behalf of the owner.


Car Insurance in Ohio

Proof of insurance is mandatory to prove your financial responsibility. So, whether you’re a resident or registering an out-of-state car, you need to buy an auto insurance policy.

You can get the best insurance rates in Ohio via Way.com. Compare Ohio insurance quotes from various insurers and choose the best.


Here’s more info on top-rated airport parking, the best parking spots in your city, the most affordable auto insurance for your car, and top-rated car washes near you.


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