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Old 01-02-2004, 08:14 PM
Join Date: Nov 2002
Location: Monterey, Calif
Posts: 253
California vehicle registration......whats the penalty

if you have not yet registered your car.

My registration is for November. Last night it was brought to my attention that I still had 2003 tags. It is now 2004. Whats the penalty for driving with old tags?.

This wasn't done on purpose, its just with the move and confusion with changing addresses with the post office and such that I never realized it.

I don't get paid til the 16 of Jan. I drove all the way up to monterey (paranoid). Now that I'm back home, I wonder if I should just park the car and walk to work until I have the funds to register it?

Anyone out there know have more info?
Old 01-02-2004, 08:45 PM
Screwing the unscrutable.
Join Date: Mar 1999
Location: Utah's Dixie
Posts: 4,754
Here ya go.

CA Late Registration

Looks like it's gonna be expensive, based on what kind of car you have.

If it's newer and/or greater value, you're in a for a big shock.

$30.00 plus 60% of the fee due plus the fee itself.

Everyone is entitled to their own opinions, but not to their own facts.

Proud Member of the SDMB "99'ers"!
Old 01-02-2004, 08:46 PM
Join Date: Mar 1999
Location: The Golden State
Posts: 10,565
I don't know what the ticket is, but the DMV has a scale for how much extra you have to pay depending upon how late you are.

Your chance of getting pulled over for expired registration isn't all that great unless the cops are bored or you are driving around in some neighborhood you don't belong.
Old 01-02-2004, 10:50 PM
Charter Member
Charter Member
Join Date: Apr 1999
Location: 742 Evergreen Terrace
Posts: 6,198
I've been pulled over for not having correct tags, and you'll wish you'd just gone ahead and registered.
Old 01-03-2004, 02:24 AM
Join Date: Nov 2002
Location: Monterey, Calif
Posts: 253
GULP !!!
Old 01-03-2004, 03:10 AM
Join Date: Dec 2003
Location: Milwaukee
Posts: 7,384
I'm not in Cali, but I had a ticket for that. Usually just get it done before the court date, show the judge proof, explain what happened and it (at least mine) gets thrown out. But the financial straits Cali is in, who knows.
Old 01-03-2004, 04:24 AM
KGS KGS is offline
Join Date: Jul 2002
Location: Porn Capital USA
Posts: 4,657
"$30.00 plus 60% of the fee due plus the fee itself" -- not really that bad if you've already gone a whole year w/o registration (that is if I'm reading the OP right.)

I recently got a ticket for expired registration -- someone stole the tags right off my plate, and peeled off the 2003 tag for good measure. IIRC the penalty is $65; I was able to get a fix-it but still had to pay $10 for the privilege.

What's interesting is that the 2002 and 2004 CA tags are the same color, so you've really got to look to see it's expired...that must've been one bored cop!
Old 01-03-2004, 11:13 AM
Charter Member
Join Date: Mar 2000
Posts: 7,783
I had it happen several years back, and it didn't strike me as THAT bad, considering.

(I was relying on them to automatically send me my renewal on time, and wasn't paying particular attention. There was a year or two in there where they had screwed up mailing out renewal notices, and a whole lot of people didn't get them. Of course, since the mailed renewal is just a "courtesy", you're still obligated to take care of it.)

What was interesting is that in several months of driving around the Bay Area with an expired plate, nobody noticed. I took a trip up to the Sierras, and a CHP officer pulled me over on a state highway.
Old 01-03-2004, 05:35 PM
Join Date: Apr 2002
Location: USA
Posts: 17,348
What I've been told - by CHP officers, it that the CHP will definitely get you for expired registration because their paychecks come from that registration fee you didn't pay.

City cops get paid from different funds and aren't as likely to care, unless you're doing something else they don't like, which in some cases means, breathing.

So you're safer staying in the city and avoiding the highways.

What's interesting now though, is the huge increase in registration fees that Davis enacted and Arnie rescinded. On what side of the issue were the police unions? That could make a big difference in how sympathetic or unsympathetic cops are right now about expired plates.
Old 01-03-2004, 07:03 PM
Join Date: Sep 2000
Location: Fifth corner of the Earth
Posts: 17,034
I had a similar problem -- I had registered, but I never got the new sticker and forgot to put it on my car. Got pulled over and had to pay $260, as well as schlepping to the DMV for a replacement sticker.
Electric Escape -- Information superhighway rest area #10,186
Old 01-03-2004, 09:43 PM
Screwing the unscrutable.
Join Date: Mar 1999
Location: Utah's Dixie
Posts: 4,754
Originally posted by KGS
What's interesting is that the 2002 and 2004 CA tags are the same color, so you've really got to look to see it's expired...that must've been one bored cop!

2002 was green.

2003 was orange.

2004 is blue.


The colors rotate as follows:

Blue / Yellow / Red / Green / Orange

So it's 5 years before a color repeats.

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