Maryland drivers renew their vehicle tags every two years, so they can keep driving legally on public roads. From sedans to convertibles, from pick up trucks to motorcycles, from RVs and motorhomes, all vehicles need to be registered. Renewed tags consists of a new registration card and sticker.
Typically, an MD driver will get a Maryland MVA tags renewal notice about two months before their registration expires; at which time he or she can renew. The process can be a hassle at times, but eTags Maryland is here to help! Keep reading for some of the common questions and answers for easy shortcuts to the information and details you need to process your Maryland MVA tag renewal.
What’s the easiest way to renew your MD car registration?
There are several ways to renew your tag, the easiest would depend on you and your preferences. While some don’t mind renewing by telephone, some prefer to renew online.
Here’s where you can renew your Maryland tag:
• In person, at a full-service MDOT MVA office
• In person, at an MVA Kiosk located in MVA locations
• By phone, at 1.410.768.7000 and follow instructions
• Online, with the MVA if your personal info hasn’t changed
• Online, with eTags to get a digital copy you can use temporarily
and pay-over-time options
• By mail, with the MVA
• In person, at a County Treasurer’s Office
*Note that due to the 2020 COVID-19 pandemic, many MDOT MVA offices operate by appointment only.
What are the different benefits from the various ways to renew tags?
Depending on the route you take for renewing tags, you may have some benefits that other options don’t. For example, should you choose to renew with MDOT’s MVA online option and want to pay by check instead of credit card, you’ll have to give the MVA your bank’s checking account number as well as a routing number. Money orders and travelers checks aren’t accepted. Also, your tag will be sent to the address the MVA has on file for you.
If you choose to renew in person, at an MVA kiosk, note that you can only do so if the name, address, insurance and vehicle information printed on the registration renewal notice you received hasn’t changed. The same rule applies for renewing by phone.
If you renew by mail, you may need a power of attorney if trying to renew a tag for a company car.
How renewing registration with eTags different?
But, let’s say you choose to renew you MD tag with eTags, then we can send you renewed registration to whatever shipping address you want. So if you’re staying somewhere else due to temporarily working in another MD county or you’re in another state due to COVID-19, eTags can send your renewal wherever you are.
eTags also gives you:
• Access to an instant digital download of your registration while you wait for the physical tag in the mail
• The chance to renew tag for all sorts of vehicles from sedans to SUVs to trailers, RVs, motorhomes, motorcycles, and more
• Sticker or plate replacement for free if stolen, for every year you renew tag
• A customer service team that can discover, address and sometimes even solve issues that may stop your renewal such as tolls, parking tickets, and a suspended license
• Emails and text messages to remind you when it’s time to renew
• Peace of mind with over 400,000 ratings and 4.7 out of 5 stars for overall satisfaction
• Refer a friend program for Amazon gift card (seasonal)
What documents are needed for tag renewal in MD?
Virtually any way you choose to renew will require some paperwork. You’ll need your current registration card or notice, the vehicle’s VIN, auto insurance, driver’s license, title number, proof of passing emissions test, and license plate number. Name, address and other personal information too.
What happens if you have expired tags in Maryland?
A person can obtain penalties for driving an unregistered vehicle and negatively impact their driving record. Whether a car was never registered, has expired plates, or the registration was previously suspended or revoked, driving such a vehicle can result in a fine of up to $500.
SEE ALSO: CAN YOU GET PULLED OVER FOR EXPIRED TAGS?
How does the MVA’s vehicle emission inspection (VEIP) work?
Maryland need your help to cut down on car pollution. Before you renew your registration in MD, you need to ensure it passed the safety inspection. This is required before any used cars, trucks, tractors, motorcycles, special equipment, class “B” for-hire vehicles, and class “L” (historic) vehicles with a 1986 model year of later can be titled and registered in Maryland.
Every two years, you’ll have to have the vehicle inspected at one of the VEIP stations in MD and make repairs if your car doesn’t pass the emissions test. The first re-test is free if you discuss the test results before you leave and get your car re-tested by the due date. The VEIP significantly reduces vehicle emissions contributing to the city’s air quality problem of ground-level ozone which contributes to excess smog.
There are about 18 centralized MVA inspection stations and 10 self-service kiosks across 13 counties and Baltimore City. The fee for emission testing is about $14.At some point during your two-year registration period, you’ll get an MVA notice asking you to get your car emissions inspected. You have eight weeks to have vehicle tested.
*Note that due to COVID-19, some VEIP stations are closed. You can call 1.800.950.1682 or email the MVA directly at firstname.lastname@example.org
Right now, the Annapolis and Bel Air self-service station is open, as well as the Glen Burnie and Waldorf branch.