Updated on July 12, 2021
For Alabamans, registering their vehicle is pretty easy since there’s no emissions inspection needed. But a VIN inspection for out-of-state vehicles is required before you can get your tags to make sure VIN matches the title.
Use eTags© to Quickly Complete Your DMV Service. Renewals, Title Transfers and More, All Online!
The Heart of Dixie State has over 4 million licensed drivers, who mostly prefer the Ford F-Series. That’s right! Various trims and models of the Ford pickup trucks are the most popular vehicle in Alabama as of 2019. Texas, Colorado, and Georgia drivers also prefer this best-selling U.S. truck that’s been on road since 1948.
Alabama requires drivers moving to the Heart of Dixie State to register their vehicle within a month. Failure to do so can lead to a penalty of $15 plus interest fees. That same penalty applies to Alabamans who don’t renew tags on time or fail for transfer their plates to their newly registered vehicle. For more information on Alabama registration, please continue reading this Alabama registration guide.
Alabama Vehicle Registration Renewal Guide
How to Renew a Car Registration in Alabama
In order to renew a vehicle registration in the state of Alabama, drivers will first need to determine in which month his or her registration expires. As outlined by the Alabama Motor Vehicle Division, the month which you must renew by is determined by the first letter of your last name, detailed below:
January: A and D
March: C and E
April: F, G, and N
May: H and O
June: M and I
July: P and L
August: J, K, and R
September: Q, S, and T
October: U through Z
November: All commercial, fleet, and leased vehicles.
Most counties will send out a Alabama registration renewal notices before your due date. This renewal notice will typically include general information about the vehicle, a PIN which can be used for online renewal, the amount of the renewal fee, the name of the individual to whom the vehicle is registered, and this person’s address.
Having said that, the MVD makes it very clear that if you do not receive a renewal notice it is your responsibility to renew your registration on your own—so make sure to double check your records, even if you don’t get a notification in the mail.
To renew in person you will need to go to your local title office and provide the following:
- The vehicle’s current registration documents, or the renewal notice you received.
- Your driver’s license.
- A payment for the renewal fee.
In order to renew online with the Alabama Motor Vehicle Division, you will need the aforementioned PIN number. Not every county in Alabama offers online registration and some counties will charge an additional fee to renew online.
Do you live in Alabama and need a replacement car registration? You have come to the right place. Read the following FAQ to get all the tips and links you need to take care of this chore.
In Alabama, you will be visiting your local county Motor Vehicle Division office to handle most driver’s license, car title, and vehicle registration issues.
If you have any questions and want to talk to a person, give them a call at (334) 242-9000. You can send a question via email using the Support Request Form.
It may take a day or two for you to receive an email response.
How to Replace a Vehicle Registration in Alabama
First off, are you looking to renew or replace your registration? If you received your renewal in the mail, follow the enclosed instructions to bring it to your local revenue office or file online through your county’s website.
If you lost or damaged your registration document, then you will be filling out a request form and will have to head over to your MVD office.
To replace your vehicle registration in the state of Alabama you will need:
- Your Alabama driver’s license.
- The vehicle identification number of your car.
- The current plate number of your car.
- Payment as required.
- Form MV 40-12-265-1.
Can You Get a Replacement Vehicle Registration Online?
Unfortunately, you cannot have a duplicate registration issued through any online service in the state.
It is possible to request one through the mail, but you have to send the request to the issuing MVD office, not a central location. You are better off taking the time to visit the office.
Where are the MVD Locations?
There is an MVD office situated in every county in Alabama. Click here for a complete list. Some of the offices maintain a website, others do not.
Some have created an online portal to allow you to renew licenses and registrations, but will charge an additional fee for the convenience.
When are the MVD Locations Open for Business?
Most Motor Vehicle Division locations that can issue a replacement vehicle registration are open Monday through Friday 8:30 AM to 5:00 PM. However, if yours is in a smaller town, it may close for lunch.
Make sure to call ahead so you don’t waste your lunch break.
Can You Use Any MVD Office for an Alabama Replacement Registration?
Once you register your vehicle in a particular county, you will always be using that office for any further transactions for your car in the future unless you move to a different county.
If you used the central office in Montgomery, you will have to return to the city for your Alabama replacement registration.
Are Your Alabama License Plates Stolen? How to Replace Them
If you ended up losing your plates or had them stolen, you will need to file a report with your local police department. After you have the police report, download Form MV 40-12-265-1 and fill it out.
Take it to the issuing MVD office and you will be able to receive a new set of plates. The police report should nullify the replacement fee.
If your plates are mutilated or damaged, it will cost $2 per plate to have them replaced.
Lost Your Validation Decal? Get it Replaced
The law requires that you display your annual validation decal on your rear plate, If it falls off or is scratched so that it is illegible, you need to get it replaced.
Fill out Form MV 40-12-265-1 and bring it to your office.
Replacement Registration Fees In Alabama
It costs $2 to receive a new decal.
How to Replace Your Regular Tags with Personalized or Specialty Plates
In Alabama you can put in an application for a 5-digit personalized message on your plates.
Use the online portal to place your reservation. When the plate is printed, it is sent to your local MVD office. You will have 5 days to visit the office, pay the specialty plate fee, and redeem your reservation.
Should you have any more questions about your car and its replacement registration, give the Alabama Motor Vehicle Division a call at (334) 242-9000 or request their assistance through the Contact Page.