Getting a license plate is a fairly benign and harmless experience, if you do some homework first. That way, you will understand just what is needed, and you won't waste time and effort.
First, know that most states require the use of temporary registration and tags if existing registration is not being transferred. If registration is being transferred, authorized dealers and other entities may provide necessary transfer steps and instruments.
As you might expect, each state has its own set of rules and regulations relating to motor vehicle licensing, registering, titling, and otherwise establishing legal authority to operate a particular motor vehicle on the state roadways.
As such, you would need to check with your specific State DMV Offices to ensure you fully understand the particular requirements of your state and local area.
Most states allow authorized motor vehicle dealers to provide temporary registration and tags, to enable new owners to drive sooner, rather than later.
If you buy a car from a private party, you will need to provide the governing agency (DMV, County Office, Other Authorized Entities) with whatever it is your state requires.
As a rule of thumb, most states require such things as:
- Proof of insurance
- Bill of Sale
- VIN verification
- Emissions test report
- Safety inspection report
- Proof of tax obligations
- Completed Title Transfer
- Temporary Registration Request
- Other similar instruments
As you can see, it is most imperative to verify your particular needs in your particular location.
Check with your local DMV Office.