Ann Harris Bennett
Tax Assessor-Collector & Voter Registrar

Vehicle Registration Frequently Asked Questions
General Questions Vehicle Title Questions License/Registration Questions
  • Q. Can I pay my vehicle registration with a credit card?

    • Yes, you may renew online by visiting the Texas Department of Motor Vehicles website and clicking on the "Renew My Registration" link. If you renew online, the total price includes a $2.00 non-refundable fee that supports the ongoing operations and enhancements of Texas.gov. The service accepts VISA, MasterCard, American Express or Discover.
    • All Harris County Tax Office branch locations are now accepting all major credit and debit cards for all automobile transactions, including registration stickers, license plates, automobile titles and temporary disability placards. Credit and debit card automobile transactions will be subject to a 2.15% transaction fee and a flat 50 cent processing fee by the service vendor.
  • Q. How do I register and title a motorcycle?

    • Follow the same procedures as with any motor vehicle.
  • Q. How do I contact the Harris County Tax Office?

    • Email: autotdmv@hctx.net
    • Phone: 713-274-8000
    • Correspondence:

      Ann Harris Bennett, Tax Assessor-Collector & Voter Registrar
      P.O. Box 4089
      Houston, Texas 77210-4089.
  • Q. Can I download forms that pertain to motor vehicle registration and titles?

  • Q. What should I do if my license plates are lost, damaged, or stolen or I need to replace my windshield sticker?

    • Replacement stickers and plates are available in person or by mail.
    • In Person: Fee $6.50

      By Owner:
      The owner may obtain the replacement at any Harris County Tax Assessor-Collector's office, and the 'replacement license receipt' statement will be signed at that time.
      By Authorization from the Owner:
      Authorization may be given to another person to obtain the replacement. The owner must provide a completed and signed form MV-454 (Authorization Letter) and a copy of their driver's license to the authorized person.
      Hours/Locations/Payment:
      8:00 a.m. to 4:30 p.m., Monday-Friday, with continuous service. Map of locations

      The payment must be in cash, money order, personal check, or credit/debit card. The owner or the authorized person may write a check. Personal ID is required.
    • By Mail: Fee $6.50

      The owner will need to complete and sign a form VTR-60. Send the completed form and a check or money order to our mailing address. Make the check payable to Ann Harris Bennett.

      Mailing address:
      Ann Harris Bennett, Harris County Tax Assessor-Collector
      Attn: Supv. Renewals, 2nd Floor Auto
      PO Box 4089
      Houston TX 77210-4089

      If your address has changed, please write in large letters on the form "address change". The new address will be shown on your new receipt.
  • Q. What is required in order to purchase a one-trip or 30 day permit?

    • Anyone may purchase and sign for a permit. You must provide a valid photo ID, vehicle description including the vehicle identification number (VIN), year, make. and
      • For a one-trip permit, you will need:
        • point of origin
        • point of destination
        • intermediate point
        • Proof of insurance indicating the vehicle meets Texas liability requirements.
        • $5.00 – Cash, money order or credit/debit card.
        • $4.75 TxDMV Processing and Handling Fee.
      • For a 30-day permit, you will need:
        • date and the time that the permit will begin
        • Proof of insurance indicating the vehicle meets Texas liability requirements.
        • $25.00 – Cash, money order or credit/debit card.
        • $4.75 TxDMV Processing and Handling Fee will be added to the total cost of the permits.
      *If more than five 30-day permits are requested for the same vehicle, additional requests may be evaluated.
    • We accept: cash, money orders, debit/credit cards or certified checks made payable to Ann Harris Bennett (no personal checks)
    • Permits may be requested:
    • *Please make certain that you submit requests for permits allowing for processing and return mailing time to make certain the permit is received before the effective date of intended use.
  • Q. What does "Registration Purposes Only" mean? What are the circumstances for this type of transaction?

    • "Registration Purposes Only" means that the vehicle is registered, but not titled, in Texas. This type of ownership document may be requested when a vehicle that was registered or titled in another state is subject to registration in Texas but the owner or operator cannot or does not wish to surrender the negotiable out-of-state evidence of ownership in order to obtain a Texas negotiable title. This may also be used in some instances when the original title is held by a lienholder out of state and the owner does not yet have access to the title.
  • Q. How do I obtain specialty license plates?

    • You may obtain an Application for Specialty License Plates from either the Texas Department of Motor Vehicles, www.txdmv.gov or from www.myplates.com, the State’s vendor for additional specialty plate selections. There is a charge in addition to the regular registration fee. The amount charged for specialty plates varies according to the type ordered. In some cases, the applicant must meet eligibility requirements before applying for specialty plates. Visit the Texas Department of Motor Vehicles or MyPlates websites to see a complete list of specialty plates that are available.
  • Q. I need to pick up my specialty plates that I ordered. What information do I need to bring with me?

    • Please contact our office at 713-274-8301 to see if they are ready for pick up. If so, you may request to pick them up at a Harris County Tax Office location near you.
    • Please bring the following with you:
      • Your current proof of liability insurance.
      • Your current plate number or registration receipt-(If this is a new vehicle please call us to verify that your new license plates are registered).
      • If possible, please bring the license plates and registration sticker that is currently on the vehicle so we can destroy them properly for you.
      • Funds to cover any additional costs that are due. (Additional fees may include exchange fees and pro-rated registration fees, and may be equal to the full amount of your annual registration.) We accept cash, check, debit/credit cards, and money order as forms of payment.
      • If someone other than the plate owner or vehicle owner picks up the specialty plates, please bring written authorization with a photocopy of the driver's license of both parties authorizing the exchange. (If this is a lease vehicle, please bring a copy of your lease agreement.)
      • If you would like to place your specialty plate on a vehicle that is not owned by you, please have the recorded owner complete a form MV-510 authorizing plate placement on their vehicle.
  • Q. My car has specialty license plates and it is time for renewal, however; I would like to switch to regular plates. What do I need to bring in or can this be handled by mail?

    • By mail, you can submit a written request for regular plates to be issued in lieu of your specialty plates and send in only the fees for the registration. You can calculate this amount by subtracting the specialty fee from your registration. (ex: Registration fee- $104.25, remove the specialty fee, send only $68.00 .)
      • Our mailing address is:
        Office of Ann Harris Bennett, Tax Assessor-Collector
        Attn: Special Plate Dept.
        PO Box 4089
        Houston, TX 77210
    • In person, you can visit any one of our offices and simply ask for regular plates. No additional forms are required to complete this by mail or in person. Locations are shown on the homepage of our website.
  • Q. What is the Processing and Handling fee?

    • The $4.75 Processing and Handling fee is a TxDMV mandated fee to cover the costs of processing vehicle registrations. These costs include state and county services; creation of annual renewal notices; registration stickers; and other related services and materials.
  • Q. I lost my title. How do I get a duplicate?

    • The Texas Department of Motor Vehicles (TxDMV) issues duplicate titles. Please visit the TxDMV website for complete information on how to obtain a duplicate title or you may call the TxDMV at 1-888-368-4689.
  • Q. I just bought/sold a car. How do I transfer the title?

    • The seller completes the assignment on the back of the title with the purchaser's name, address, odometer reading and date of sale.
    • The purchaser and seller must each sign both the title and the title application form (Form 130-U).
    • Both signed documents must be given to the purchaser, along with the registration receipt.
    • You may elect to submit a transfer notification online, to advise TXDMV that you have sold the vehicle. The record will still appear in your name until the title is transferred but this provides for some protections.
    • The purchaser submits the title application to any Harris County Harris County Tax Office location with the following documents:
    *Proof of current insurance will be required in the new purchaser’s name. If the vehicle was purchased over 30 days ago insurance must be provided in the new purchasers name on the vehicle.

    **If registration is being purchased a current, passing Vehicle Inspection Report must be submitted. If the vehicle was last registered in a non-affected (attainment) county, proof of emissions-testing will be required. Please see Emissions-testing regulations.

    ***The Identification must contain a unique identifier, expiration date, date of birth and expiration date.
    • Title fee: $33
    • Motor Vehicle sales tax (6.25 percent). Please note sales tax is paid on the actual price or 80% of the Standard Presumptive Value -- whichever is the higher amount. SPV values can be found on the Texas Department of Motor Vehicles website.
    • Registration fee: $2.50, if registration is current OR registration fee.
    • Local County Road & Bridge fee: $10.00
    • Child Safety Fee: 1.50
    • TxDPS TexasSure Insurance verification fee: $1.00
    • TxDMV Processing & Handling Fee: $4.75
    When you purchase a vehicle from a licensed Texas dealer, the dealer is required to complete all the paperwork necessary and file the documents with the Harris County Tax Office. The dealer and general public are required to file the documents with the Harris County Tax Office within 30 calendar days of the date you purchased the vehicle. Additional penalties will be collected if the paperwork is filed more than 30 calendar days after the date of sale.
  • Q. Can I mail my title documents into your office or do I have to present them in person?

    • If the transaction does not involve a gift you can mail all of your original titling documents and a legible copy of the title applicant’s government issued ID to our office. The government issued ID must contain a current photo, unique identification number, a birth date, and an expiration date. Please make sure you make your check or money order payable to Ann Harris Bennett, Tax Assessor-Collector & Voter Registrar.
    • Our mailing address is:
      Ann Harris Bennett, Tax Assessor-Collector & Voter Registrar
      Attn: Title Mail Dept.
      P.O. Box 4089, Houston, Texas 77210-4089
  • Q. I've bought a vehicle and I have liability insurance on another car. What document can I use to show proof of financial responsibility when I transfer title and registration?

    • The personal automobile policy for any other vehicle an individual owns provides 30-day coverage after an additional vehicle has been acquired.
    • As long as the purchase of the newly acquired vehicle is within 30 days of the title application date, a copy of the personal automobile insurance policy or the card issued for the policy is acceptable as proof of financial responsibility.
  • Q. What are the minimum liability limits for automobile insurance in the State of Texas?

    • The minimum liability limits per accident are:
      • $30,000 for each injured person, up to a total of
      • $60,000 per accident, and
      • $25,000 for property damage.
    • Proof of insurance is required with most Automobile Services transactions including, but not limited to:
      • Title Transfers
      • Vehicle Registration and Renewal
      • Issue of Timed Permits (Temporary Plates)
  • Q. I applied for a title and neither my lienholder nor I have received it yet.

    • Customers should receive their titles within three to six weeks from the date of application.
    • You may contact the Harris County Tax Office at 713-274-8000 for further research.
    • Please have the Vehicle Identification Number (VIN) of the vehicle in question available.
  • Q. Why does the state show a lien on my car if I paid it off?

    • This occurs if you have not advised the State of Texas that your lien has been satisfied.

      To remove the lien information, you may apply for a corrected title with our office by submitting:
    A new title will be issued and mailed to you within 3-6 weeks from the Texas Department of Motor Vehicles (TxDMV).
  • Q. What is required to correct an error in the odometer reading after the title has been issued?

      • A statement of fact will be required.
      • The statement must address the discrepancy and
      • Must be acknowledged by both the seller and the buyer involved in the transaction in which the error was made.
      • If multiple title assignments are impacted by odometer errors, statements to correct the odometer reading will be needed from all parties involved.
  • Q. I sold my vehicle several months ago, but the registration and title have not been changed to reflect the new owner's name and address. I'm getting notices about parking tickets involving that vehicle and the registration renewal notice has also come to me. What can I do?

    • It is likely the new owner has not transferred title into their name.
    • Visit the Texas Department of Motor Vehicles website and submit a Transfer Notification Online.
  • Q. My title was issued incorrectly. What should I do?

    • Contact the Harris County Tax Office at 713-274-8000 and we'll help you resolve the problem.
  • Q. How do I register and title a rebuilt/salvage vehicle?

    • For information about rebuilt and salvage vehicles, call the TxDMV regional office at 713-316-6100.
  • Q. How do I turn a Salvage Document into a blue negotiable Texas title?

    • The following must support the application for title:
      • Salvage Title Document
      • Form 61- Rebuilt Affidavit completed by the Rebuilder and the title applicant.
      • A $65 Rebuilt fee.
      • Registration Fee (varies by vehicle class)
      • Odometer statement (vehicles less than 10 model years old)
      • A current, passing Vehicle Inspection Report
      • Valid proof of financial responsibility, covering the described vehicle, in the applicant’s name.
      • Acceptable form of owner/applicant identification.
    If the vehicle has a non-conforming USA VIN and has never been titled in the United States, proof of compliance with the U.S. Department of Transportation safety regulations is required.

    When a salvage title document is included in the application, the subsequent title issued will contain a notation to indicate that the vehicle was previously damaged. "Flood Damaged" will be shown, when applicable, or "Rebuilt Salvage" will be shown. These notations are carried permanently in the TxDMV title records and will appear on all subsequent titles.

    Note: Effective December 15, 2016 - A salvage dealer who rebuilds a vehicle for resale must assign the salvage title to their GDN dealership name and apply for a title only in the GDN dealership name before the vehicle may be sold to a retail purchaser. “Dealer Resale” should be shown for the motor vehicle sales tax exemption.

    For additional information please refer to the TxDMV Salvage Nonrepairable Manual by selecting the “Manual and Guides” drop down menu.
  • Q. What information is required, and who is authorized to execute a Statement of Fact should one be required to correct an error on a title assignment?

    • The statement must certify:
      • the correct information
      • The description of the vehicle, vehicle identification number, year, make
      • The date of the statement
      • Only the seller is authorized to execute the Statement of Fact. When the statement is completed by a company a business card may be required.
    NOTE: If the Statement of Fact is required for the odometer disclosure and/or reading on the assignment the seller(s) and buyer(s) must sign the statement.
  • Q. Why am I required to provide certain documentation to change a vehicle title to my name?

    • The title law protects ownership rights for more than 20 million vehicles in Texas. Therefore, the statutes require transfer of ownership by proper execution of certain ownership documents. When these specific documents are incomplete or unavailable, Texas statutes require that the applicant apply for a Tax Collector's hearing or bonded title.
  • Q. What is a bonded title and what is it used for?

    • A bonded title is a title document which indicates a Certificate of Title Surety Bond has been surrendered in support of the application for title. The bond is issued in the title applicant's name for a three-year period. The bond is required by statute in cases where proper ownership documents are unavailable. The purpose of a bonded title is to protect previous and future owner(s) and/or lienholder(s) of the vehicle from potential claims.
  • Q. How do I title a new manufactured trailer?

    • A trailer with a gross weight in excess of 4000 pounds must be titled by law. Trailers with a gross weight less than 4000 pounds have the option of applying for title.
    • Trailers with a gross weight of more than 4500 pounds must have a current, passing Vehicle Inspection Report (VIR)
    You will need:
    • Manufactured Certificate of Origin (MCO)
    • (Form 130-U) Application for Texas Certificate of Title
    • A weight certificate if the weight is not indicated on MCO
    • A copy of a current, passing Vehicle Inspection Report (VIR) for trailers with gross weights over 4500 pounds.
    • A weight certificate is required if the gross weight is over 4500 lbs.
    • Acceptable form of owner/applicant identification.
  • Q. How do I register a homemade / shopmade trailer that does not meet the title requirements?

    • You will need:
      • Form VTR-305-A -Statement of Fact for Ownership of Homemade/Shopmade Trailer if the trailer has never been registered. Otherwise, a previous registration receipt and Bill of Sale from the registered owner is required.
      • (Form 130-U) Application for Texas Certificate of Title (Required even if not titled)
      • Weight Certificate
      • A copy of a current, passing Vehicle Inspection Report (VIR) for trailers with gross weights over 4500 pounds.
      • Acceptable form of owner/applicant identification.
  • Q. How do I title a homemade/shopmade trailer that is 4001 pounds or more?

    • You will need:
      • (Form 130-U) Application for Texas Certificate of Title
      • Weight Certificate
      • Accepted form of identification.
      • Form VTR-305-A - Statement of Fact for Ownership of Homemade/Shopmade Trailer if the trailer has never been titled. Otherwise, a title is required.
      • (Form 130-U) Application for Texas Certificate of Title
      • Weight Certificate
      • Form 68-A - Application for Assigned or Reassigned Vehicle Identification Number
      • Form 68-N – Notice of Assigned Number (Issued by the TxDMV)
      • A copy of a current, passing Vehicle Inspection Report (VIR) for trailers with gross weights over 4500 pounds.
      • Acceptable form of owner/applicant identification.
  • Q. What documents do I need to transfer an out of state titled trailer?

    • You will need:
      • Negotiable Out of State Title
      • (Form 130-U) Application for Texas Certificate of Title
      • May need weight certificate if weight is not indicated on title
      • A copy of a current, passing Vehicle Inspection Report (VIR) for trailers with gross weights over 4500 pounds.
      • Acceptable form of owner/applicant identification.
      • If the trailer is a travel trailer, please complete a travel trailer verification form, VTR-141.
  • Q. How much sales tax would I owe if I am gifted a vehicle?

    • The sales tax on a gifted vehicle is $10.00.
    • All other applicable fees will apply. Beginning September 1, 2009 a vehicle can only be gifted from one family member to another. (A family member is defined as a parent, step parent, grandparent, grandchild, child, stepchild, sibling, spouse, guardian, in-laws, certain revocable trusts, 501(c)(3) and decedent estates.)
    • The title application along with the supporting documents including the Texas State Comptroller Gift Affidavit, Form 14-317 must be presented in person
  • Q. Do I need any extra forms if I am gifted a vehicle?

    • Yes, a notarized statement between both interested parties must be completed explaining the nature of the transaction and the relationship between both parties. Form 14-317 is now available on the Texas Comptroller's website.
    • Effective June 19, 2011, SB 267:
      Either the Recipient or Donor must file the Affidavit of Motor Vehicle Gift Transfer (Comptroller Form 14-317) in person at the tax office. ("Donor" includes a person authorized to act on behalf of an estate in an inheritance.) The person filing the affidavit must present an unexpired photo identification document issued to that person.

      The identification must be one of the following:
      • Driver's license or personal identification card issued by Texas or another state of the United States;
      • Original United States passport or an original passport issued by a foreign country with proper United States stamp;
      • Identification card issued by the Texas Department of Criminal Justice;
      • United States military identification card; or
      • Identification card or document issued by the United States Department of Homeland Security or United States Citizenship and Immigration Service, such as and Employment Authorization Document (Card).
    • No other identification may be accepted, including identification cards issued through foreign consular offices, such as the Mexico Matricula Consular.
    • A Power of Attorney may not be used in lieu of the recipient or donor appearing in person at the tax office.
  • Q. How do I process a Mechanic Lien in Harris County after September 1, 2015?

    • HB 2076 changed when a vehicle may be sold at a public sale. A public sale may not take place until 31 days after the county tax assessor-collector’s office has been notified of the mechanic’s lien by the person holding the lien. All mechanic liens and supporting documents must be submitted to the Downtown Tax Office, Room 100 for processing; or sent by certified mail, return receipt requested to:
      • Ann Harris Bennett, Tax Assessor-Collector & Voter Registrar
        Attn: Mechanic Lien Department
        1001 Preston, Room 210
        Houston, Texas 77002
    • The person filing a mechanic’s lien, other than a person licensed as a franchised dealer, is required to give notice to the owner(s) and lienholder(s) recorded on the certificate of title. The notice must also be sent to the address that appears on the work order, if the address on the work order is different than the address on the motor vehicle record. The notices shall include:
    • Foreclosure Notice - Within 30 days of the completed repairs, the person filing the mechanic’s lien shall notify the owner(s) and lienholder(s) of record by certified mail, return receipt requested. In addition, notice must be made to the county tax assessor-collector’s office within this same 30 day period.
      The notice must contain the following information.
      • The physical address of the real property at which the repairs to the motor vehicle were made;
      • The legal name of the person that holds the possessory lien for which the notice is required;
      • The taxpayer identification number, employer identification number, or social security number as applicable, of the person that holds the possessory lien for which the notice is required; and
      • A signed copy of the work order authorizing the repairs on the motor vehicle.
    • After providing notice, a holder of a mechanic’s lien shall, on request allow an owner and each lienholder of record to inspect or arrange an inspection of the motor vehicle by a qualified professional to verify that the repairs were made. The inspection must be completed before the date of the public sale.
    • Acceptable form of owner/applicant identification.
    • The holder of the lien shall provide a copy of the notice with all other evidence supporting the lien to the county tax assessor-collector’s office in the county in which the repairs were made within 30 days of the completed repairs. Not later than the 15th day after the date the Tax Office receives a copy of the notice and all other evidence supporting the lien from the holder of the mechanic’s lien, the Tax Office shall notify the owner(s) and lienholder(s) of record by certified mail, return receipt requested. The Tax Office will contact the holder of the lien by telephone after the transaction has been processed, or rejected in the event the transaction cannot be processed.
    • In addition to normal mechanic lien processing fees, an administrative fee of $25.00 is required for each possessory lien submitted for processing. The administrative fee is specific to mechanic liens only.
    • Credit/debit cards, checks, or money orders are the only forms of payment accepted by the Harris County Tax Office for mechanic lien fees and the $25.00 administrative fee. The lien fees and administrative fees cannot be combined and must be paid separately.
  • Q. It’s been more than three weeks since I purchased my vehicle registration by mail and I haven’t received my registration sticker. What do I need to do now?

    • You may visit one of our Harris County Tax Office locations near you. Upon confirmation the registration fees were paid, you may apply for a $6.50 replacement plate and/or sticker. By mail, please contact our office at 713-274-8301 or email us at autotdmv@hctx.net for mailing instructions.
  • Q. It’s been more than three weeks since I purchased my vehicle registration by online and I haven’t received my registration sticker. What do I need to do now?

    • You are able to track your online registration request using the TxDMV supplied confirmation number you received upon your initial submission at www.TxDMV.gov/track. Upon determination of your completed request, you may visit one of our Harris County Tax Office locations to apply for a $6.50 replacement plate and/or sticker. By mail, please contact our office at 713-274-8301 or email us at autotdmv@hctx.net for mailing instructions.
  • Q. I lost my original registration renewal receipt. How can I obtain a copy?

    • In person:

      You may visit one of our branch office locations, Monday - Friday, 8 - 4:30 and complete a MV-440. The cost is $2.00 by cash, personal check or money order. You will need to present your ID. If you need to change your address, please let the teller know immediately. It will be shown on your new receipt.
    • By Mail:

      You must complete and sign a form MV-440. The cost is $2.00. If you need a change of address, you may put the new address on the MV-440 and make a notation "address change" on the form. We will update your address and it will be shown on your duplicate registration receipt.


      Our mailing address is:
      Ann Harris Bennett, Tax Assessor-Collector & Voter Registrar
      Attn: Renewal Dept.
      P.O. Box 4089, Houston, Texas 77210-4089

      Please make your check or money order payable to Ann Harris Bennett.
    • By Authorization

      You may authorize someone else to visit one of our branch office locations. You would need to provide that person with the following:
      • Form MV-454 (Letter of Authorization) This form must be completed and signed by the vehicle owner. Make certain that you notate on the form MV-454 if you are authorizing an address change, and the address will be updated on your new receipt.
      • Form MV-440 (Request for Texas Motor Vehicle Information) This form must be completed and signed by the vehicle owner. Copy of the owner’s ID (Texas Driver’s license or Texas ID card)
      • $2.00 fee, which is accepted by cash, credit/debit card, money order or personal check. The owner may write a check payable to Ann Harris Bennett. If the authorized person is writing a check, they must have their own ID.
  • Q. How do I renew my registration by mail?

    • Mail the TxDMV Registration Renewal Notice to the address below including:
      • A copy of your current Texas liability insurance card or policy document indicating liability amounts of at least $30,000/$60,000/$25,000.
      • A copy of your current, passing Vehicle Inspection Report (Effective with March, 2016 registration expirations, this report must be no earlier than 90 days prior to the vehicle registration expiration)
      • A check, money order or cashier’s check made payable to Ann Harris Bennett, Tax Assessor-Collector & Voter Registrar for the total amount shown on your registration renewal notice.

      Please Note: If you have received a ticket, please contact our office at 713-274-8301 or email us at autotdmv@hctx.net for additional fees. Please make your check payable to Ann Harris Bennett, Tax Assessor-Collector & Voter Registrar.

      Our mailing address is:

      Ann Harris Bennett, Tax Assessor-Collector
      Attn: Renewal Dept.
      P.O. Box 4089
      Houston, Texas 77210-4089

      You may also renew online on the Texas Department of Motor Vehicles website if your registration is not more than 6 months expired, you have not received a citation for expired registration and the vehicle has a current, passing inspection.
  • Q. I'm going out of town for vacation, and my registration will expire while I am gone. May I renew it in advance?

    • Yes. You can renew your registration up to two months prior to your expiration month, but make certain that your inspection has been completed within 90 days before the registration expiration.
  • Q. I just moved to Texas. How do I register my vehicle?

    • The information shown below includes the sequence of events pertaining to registering a vehicle in Texas when it is titled out-of-state. Contact information to obtain a driver's license is also provided:
      • You may apply for registration only or submit your title.
      • To obtain registration only, please submit:
        • Your current out-of-state registration showing your name as owner. You will be applying for a "Registration Purposes Only" title. (Texas title will not be issued). Your out-of-state title will continue to be held by your lienholder or yourself (if you have no lien).
        • Form 130-U (Application for Texas Certificate of Title) Your name, as shown on the out-of-state registration will be entered in section 16 and show a Harris County address in section 18. If you have a lienholder, complete section 33. You will sign on the Signature of Applicant/Owner line.
        • An original signed Form VIR, Texas Safety Inspection Certificate, (this form will be issued by the emissions/safety inspector) http://www.airchecktexas.com for nearest locations (put ‘inspection location" in the ‘search’ box)
        • Proof of current liability insurance meeting Texas minimums ($30k-$60k-$25k)
      • We accept payment in the form of cash, check, credit/debit, money order or cashier’s check.
      • To be titled in Texas, please submit:
        • Your out-of-state title. If you have a lienholder holding your out-of-state title, we can request it from them. (This is not a requirement to get plates in Texas.)
        • Form 130-U (Application for Texas Certificate of Title) Your name, as shown on the out-of-state registration will be entered in section 16 and show a Harris County address in section 18. If you have a lienholder, complete section 33. You will sign on the Signature of Applicant/Owner line.
        • An original signed Form VIR, Texas Safety Inspection Certificate, (this form will be issued by the emissions/safety inspector) http://www.airchecktexas.com for nearest locations (put “inspection location" in the ‘search’ box)
        • Proof of current liability insurance meeting Texas minimums ($30k-$60k-$25k).
      • Please Note: If this is a purchase, please provide your bill of sale or invoice at the time of title transfer. In some instances you may be taxed based on the standard presumptive value (SPV) of the vehicle instead of the sales price listed on your bill of sale. Please review information regarding SPV on the TxDMV website.

        We do not accept insurance from a no fault state.

      • Fees:
        • $90.00 new resident tax or applicable sales tax if a title is transferred and you are applying for ownership.
        • $33.00 title fee
        • 12 month registration fees ($68.00). The registration will include a set of license plates. Texas law requires both plates to be displayed (front and back). The $68.00 fee is for passenger and truck vehicles that have a total weight of 6000 pounds or less.
        • The state’s portion of the inspection fee. This fee can range from $7.50-$14.25 depending on the type of inspection that you obtain.
        • $4.75 TxDMV Processing and Handling Fee.
      • Proper sequence of events:
        1. Provide proof of Texas liability insurance minimums of $30k/$60k/$25k. (If you do not meet Texas minimums, call your agent to raise the minimum or purchase Texas insurance.) If your state does not have Texas minimums, but your policy has the required amount, then you will need a copy of the declarations page of your policy. Insurance from a "no-fault" state is not accepted.
        2. Obtain a Texas safety inspection and receive a signed, current, passing Vehicle Inspection Report (VIR) from the inspection station. You must present your insurance at the time of inspection.
        3. Apply for title/registration on vehicles to get a receipt from the Harris County Tax Office
        4. Apply for driver's license at the Texas Department of Public Safety (DPS). You must take your Tax Office receipt and liability insurance with you. http://www.txdps.state.tx.us for requirements and location information.
      • Please note: If the vehicle is coming from another country please contact us for additional requirements at 713-274-8000.
  • Q. Will my proof of insurance from out-of-state or out-of-country be acceptable to cover a vehicle required to be registered in Texas? If so, should approval be based on the minimum amounts of coverage required in Texas?

    • Proof of liability insurance coverage from out-of-state insurance companies is acceptable if it meets Texas minimum liability amounts. If you have out-of-state insurance, you will need to bring the policy when registering the vehicle. The policy must be for at least the minimum ($30k/$60k/$25k) limits prescribed by Texas law. Insurance from a "No Fault" State is not acceptable as proof of liability insurance.
  • Q. For how long may a new Texas resident operate his or her vehicle in this state while displaying current out-of-state license plates?

    • He or she can operate the vehicle for a period of thirty days after establishing residence or entering gainful employment, after which time the vehicle must be registered in Texas.
  • Q. I moved to another location within Texas. How can I be sure that my registration renewal notice will get to me when the time comes?

    • Your mail will be forwarded if you filed a Change of Address Form with the U.S. Postal Service. However, the registration record will not be updated in the State's system.
    • Complete and mail a notice of address change for Texas motor vehicle registration (VTR-146). or
    • Update your address online at the TxDMV website
  • Q. I lost my renewal notice or never received it. What are my options?

    • Your renewal notice is only required to renew at our subcontractor locations. You can renew online, by mail, or in person without a renewal notice.
    • To Renew Online:

      Visit the Texas Department of Motor Vehicles website if your registration is no more than 6 months expired, you have not received a citation for expired registration, verifiable current liability insurance and the vehicle has a current, passing inspection.
    • In Person:

      You may renew at any one of our Harris County Tax Office locations, which are open 8:00 a.m. to 4:30 p.m., Monday – Friday, with continuous service.
      You will need to bring the following:
      • License plate number or vehicle ID# (VIN), so we can access your vehicle record
      • Proof of current liability insurance on the vehicle being renewed
      • A current, passing Vehicle Inspection Report (Effective with March, 2016 registration expirations, this report must be no earlier than 90 days prior to the vehicle registration expiration.)
      • Payment in the form of cash, money order, credit/debit card or personal check
      • Proof of identification (Driver License or state issued ID)

      You may give authorization for someone else to obtain the registration for you. They would need the following:
      • Form MV-454 (Letter of Authorization), which must be signed by the vehicle owner
      • Photocopy of the owner’s ID (Texas Driver’s license or ID card)
      • Proof of current liability on the vehicle being renewed (original or photocopy of Texas Insurance ID Card)
      • Payment in the form of cash, money order, credit/debit card or personal check from the owner or a personal check from the authorized person (If the authorized person is personally writing a check, they must show their personal ID.)
    • By mail:

      You will need to send the following:
      • Check, money order or cashier’s check for the registration amount made payable to Ann Harris Bennett, Tax Assessor-Collector. Please write the license plate number and driver’s license number and daytime telephone number (in case we have any questions) on the check. Contact our office at 713-274-8000 for the correct registration fee.
      • Proof of current Texas liability insurance on the vehicle being renewed (photocopy)
      • A current, passing Vehicle Inspection Report (Effective with March, 2016 registration expirations, this report must be no earlier than 90 days prior to the vehicle registration expiration.)
      Our mail address is:
      Ann Harris Bennett, Tax Assessor-Collector
      Attn:Renewals, 2nd Floor Auto
      PO Box 4089
      Houston TX 77210-4089
  • Q. I did not receive my renewal notice and my registration has expired. Why is there a 20% penalty?

    • The 20% penalty is required by law if a vehicle is driven on public highways with expired registration after the five-day grace period and you were issued a ticket by law enforcement.
  • Q. Can a vehicle be operated after its registration expires?

    • Yes. A vehicle may be operated for five County working days after its registration expires without penalty from our office. Law enforcement can still issue a ticket for driving the vehicle with expired registration.
  • Q. Can I mail in my renewal if my registration has expired more than 5 county working days?

    • Yes. If a citation was issued for expired registration, please contact our office for the correct fee. Our number is 713-274-8301. If the vehicle has been driven after the 5 county working day grace period you will be charged the 12 month registration fee and your month of expiration will not change. Please be aware, a person is subject to a citation for operating a vehicle without current registration.
    • You can also renew online up to 6 months past the expiration date by visiting the Texas Department of Motor Vehicles website.
  • Q. What if I haven't driven the vehicle since my registration expired. Do I still pay the 20% penalty?

    • You do not have to pay a penalty as long as you have not been ticketed for driving your vehicle with expired registration. You will pay for 12 months registration from the time you purchase your registration.
  • Q. What documents do I need to provide to renew my vehicle registration at the County Tax Office?

      • TxDMV Registration Renewal Notice or vehicle information such as license plate number and Vehicle Identification Number
      • Proof of current Texas liability insurance on the vehicle being renewed
      • A current, passing Vehicle Inspection Report (Effective with March, 2016 registration expirations, this report must be no earlier than 90 days prior to the vehicle registration expiration.)
      • Payment in the form of cash, money order, credit/debit card or personal check along with your Driver License or state issued ID.
  • Q. Can I send someone else to renew my vehicle registration?

    • Yes, please be sure that the person you designate bring the following documents:
      • TxDMV Registration Renewal Notice or vehicle information such as license plate number and Vehicle Identification Number
      • Current Vehicle Insurance showing proof of liability
      • A current, passing Vehicle Inspection Report (Effective with March, 2016 registration expirations, this report must be no earlier than 90 days prior to the vehicle registration expiration.)
      • Authorization Letter - Form MV-454. The form must be filled out completely
      • Payment in the form of cash, money order, credit/debit card or personal check from the owner or a personal check from the authorized person (If the authorized person is personally writing a check, they must show their personal ID.)
  • Q. What documents do I need to provide to renew my vehicle registration at a participating grocery store?

      • TxDMV Registration Renewal Notice
      • A copy of your current Texas liability insurance card or policy document indicating liability amounts of at least $30,000/$60,000/$25,000.
      • A current, passing Vehicle Inspection Report (Effective with March, 2016 registration expirations, this report must be no earlier than 90 days prior to the vehicle registration expiration.)
      • Payment in the form of cash, money order, credit/debit card or personal check
  • Q. Can I purchase a registration sticker for more than one year

    • Unfortunately, only one year registration is available due to the single sticker law. The exception is on brand new vehicles at the time of title application.