Applying for Title and Registration
When you buy a vehicle, Arizona law requires that you apply for a title within 15 days of purchase. If your vehicle was registered in another state and you wish to operate it in Arizona, you must register it here as soon as you become an Arizona resident (See "Resident Definition" above).
Most vehicles may be registered for either one or two years at a time. (Some vehicles must be emission tested every year, and are therefore not eligible for two year registration.) Permanent registration will be issued for the following:
- Noncommercial trailers with a declared gross vehicle weight (GVW) of 10,000 lbs or less (one-time $125 registration fee)
- Commercial trailers with a declared GVW of more than 10,000 lbs (one-time $800 registration fee)
All-terrain and off-road recreational vehicles that operate only on dirt roads located in unincorporated areas of Arizona must be titled and have a plate, but are exempt from registration and insurance requirements.
In addition to other fees, vehicle owners in Arizona pay a Vehicle License Tax (VLT), assessed in place of a personal property tax charged by some other states. The VLT is distributed to the State Highway User Revenue Fund, State Highway Fund, State General Fund (for school financial assistance), County General Fund, to the counties for the same use as the State Highway User Revenue Fund and to the incorporated cities and towns for transportation, maintenance and improvements.
Plate and Fee to Owner
Arizona law provides that a license plate is assigned to the vehicle owner, not the vehicle.
- Keep the plate with the owner when the vehicle is sold.
- Get credit for remaining fees.
- Transfer the plate and fees to another vehicle (with an expired registration).
- Credit reduces each month not used.