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Renewing a Vehicle Registration in North Carolina

Renew North Carolina Registration Renewal

North Carolina residents must renew their vehicle registrations each year. Renewal notices are sent out approximately 60 days prior to expiration. NC residents can operate a vehicle up to 15 days after expiration but doing so will result in a late fee being charged upon renewal.

The vehicle must be inspected by a licensed mechanic up to 90 days before renewal.

Registration renewal fees can be paid:

  • Online.
  • By mail.
  • At a Division of Motor Vehicles licensing office.

Renew Your NC Vehicle Registration Online

You can renew your car registration online in North Carolina by visiting the NC DMV online portal and providing your:

  • Vehicle Identification Number (VIN).
  • License plate number.
  • Payment for your registration renewal fee and the $3 processing fee. The online system accepts:
    • Electronic checks.
    • Credit cards.

Renew Your North Carolina Registration by Mail

You should receive a reminder to renew your car registration around 60 days before your plates expire. If you wish, you can renew your North Carolina registration by simply:

  • Following the instructions on the renewal notice.
  • Providing payment for the amount owed.
  • Mailing these items to the address provided on the renewal notice.

If you did NOT receive a renewal notice but you wish to renew by mail, message the DMV or call customer service at (919) 715-7000.

Renew Your NC Car Registration in Person

If you prefer, the NC DMV allows residents to complete their registration renewals in person at a local license plate agency.

You may have to provide:

  • The current registration or your renewal notice.
  • Proof of insurance.
  • Driver’s license to confirm your identity.
  • Payment for the applicable fees.

NC Registration Renewal Fees

Registration fees vary based on the weight of the vehicle and whether it is used for commercial purposes.

You’ll be charged a late fee for renewing your registration after it expires. These are the additional fees charged for renewing a vehicle registration:

  • Less than 1 month after expiration: $15.
  • Between 1 and 2 months after expiration: $20.
  • 2 months or more after expiration: $25.