Car With Expired Tags On Street

Maintaining your vehicle’s registration must be done annually but cannot be totally automated for apparent reasons. As a result, car owners are to have their vehicles inspected, re-registered, and tagged, which will arrive in the mail each year.

However, it is an easy oversight to end up with an expired registration, you have left them in your glove compartment, or if you don’t have the money, you could have ignored to pay on purpose for a while.

The typical outcomes are a warning, a fine, and the potential for having your car towed or impounded. You may be subject to penalties depending on how out-of-date your registration is or how dangerous your car seems.

In our guide, you can learn more about can you get a ticket for expired tags while parked and the likely mitigating circumstances for a driver being caught without vehicle license plate tags by police officers. By the end, you’ll see what can happen and why you need to keep your license plate tags updated rather than have a towing company take your car on the instruction of local peace officers. (Read Can A Bad Gas Cap Cause Idle Problems)

Car With Expired Tags

Expired Registration Tags Penalties

The most likely outcome of an officer pulling you over for expired registration tags is a simple verbal warning and a ticket.

However, you may find various other outcomes, especially if you are driving into other states and your vehicle registration has expired.

Verbal Warning and Tickets

Police officers frequently encounter license plate tags that are a little outdated. However, you might get away with just a verbal warning if the infraction is minor and your registration tags have only recently expired.

The policeman may, however, also issue you a ticket for the expired tags if they so choose. The severity of this ticket typically depends on how long your current tags have been out of date.

If your car is on private property, they may remind you not to drive it until you get new tags. Remember that you may not get towed for an expired inspection, yet you will be fined according to how long overdue your inspection is.

Expired Tags Fines

City laws state that driving a car with an expired registration carries fines between $100 and $200, plus additional fees.

Your fine is likely higher the longer your car has been driving unregistered.

Cars Impounded or Towed

A peace officer may impound or tow your vehicle rather than letting you continue driving it if they determine it cannot pass inspection or if you take too long to rectify your registration.

Note: State codes change so that they can differ. A peace officer, a worker for the city or state to enforce parking laws, or a towing firm may commence the removal of your car if it is discovered parked on the street or public property.

The code states that while you are inside the car, only a peace officer may order it to be towed. So chances are you’d have your vehicle towed if found parked on the street. In addition, should a towing company hook a car, only a peace officer has the authority to get them to remove the hook if the vehicle owner can provide proof the current registration is valid.

In most states, if a peace officer or police officers notice that your registration tags are six months or older past due and your car is on public land, they have the authority to tow your vehicle.

Until you provide evidence that your registration has been renewed, you risk being fined and having to return your license plates to the DMV, even if your car is inside a parking lot.

Court Hearing

Even if you handle the registration, you can still be obliged to appear in court for a day. It would be best if you went to this; it is not optional. You may have the chance to fight the ticket on your day in court.

Jail Time

Drivers with expired registrations face a maximum 15-day jail sentence. However, much of this depends on your state and the situation where you were caught with expired registration tags.

Also, if your license plate number has been run through the system, and the police officer sees you were caught before. Then chances are, you could see your unregistered car towed and spend some jail time pondering over your actions.

What To Do When Pulled With Expired Registration Tags?

Don’t get upset if you are pulled because your registration tags are expired. You might escape the situation, but even if you can’t, you can almost certainly lessen the damage by acting appropriately.

To reduce the consequences of a vehicle registration ticket, use the following techniques.

Expired Registration Tags

Prove Vehicle Registration is Current

You can establish that your registration is up to date even if you don’t have the tags on our vehicle. If your car is registered, the ticket won’t stand. The regulation pertains to unregistered cars, even if you operate a vehicle with expired tags.

You won’t pay the fine as long as your vehicle is registered. (Read Penalty For Scratching A Car And Leaving)

Show Online Registration

You can show a police officer your current registration via your online DOL account or an email receipt if you have a phone. Although the officer is not required to accept this as evidence, many are tech-savvy and recognize digital evidence when they see it.

This is a practical technique to prevent getting a ticket in the first place.

Provide Proof of Correction Later

You can submit a Proof of Correction form, which will prompt the courts to check your current registration and dismiss the ticket if you cannot immediately show your current registration.

If summoned, you might still be required to show up in court.

Can You Park a Car With Expired Tags in Your Driveway?

This situation is a little different. Peace officers cannot enforce their duty in private areas when your car is parked; they can only do so in public places.

Your driveway is private property, so even if your automobile has expired registration tags, it won’t be towed.

Can I Keep My Unregistered Car on My Property?

Your home counts as private property, just like your driveway, so leaving your car with expired tags won’t be classed as illegal, nor will you risk your car being towed.

Where Can I Park My Car With Expired Tags?

If your registration has expired, you can only park your automobile on private land, such as your driveway.

Anywhere else is considered public property, and peace officers can contact a towing firm and impound the vehicle.

What Are Your Rights When Your Car Is Towed?

If your vehicle is towed and impounded, the towing firm will become the vehicle’s legal owner until you have paid all impound fees. Therefore, once the car is towed, your legal options are limited.

Only a peace enforcement officer can order a tow truck driver to halt. Once the tow truck’s hook is on your vehicle, the towing business is effectively the owner of it if they have been ordered by law enforcement to tow your automobile.

This is also at the discretion of the supervisory officer, and you will still need to renew your registration.

If you return before the car is towed, you might “get off the hook” by paying half the fine.

How Much Is A No Registration Ticket?

If you are present when your vehicle is discovered to have expired tags, a $100–$200 fine will be issued on the scene. (Learn How To Get Corrosion Off A Car Battery)

Pay impound costs to get your car back if you are not there while it is being towed. These will change based on the impound lot’s costs and the time your vehicle is stored there.

Most often, if cars have no tags for six months or are not in a state to pass an inspection, then chances are, an enforcement officer will have the vehicle towed.

Car With Expired Tags On Street