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U.S. Department of State

Diplomacy in Action

How to Register a Motor Vehicle


The Motor vehicles leased or owned by the Foreign Mission Community that will be operated in any U.S. jurisdiction must be registered with the Office of Foreign Missions and nowhere else.

Warning: Anyone in the Foreign Mission Community who, contrary to Department of State requirements, obtains a Motor Vehicle registration, decal, title, or a driver's license from a U.S. jurisdiction will be issued an OFM driver's license, registration, title, or decal only upon payment of a service fee of $100.00 for each service requested. Foreign Missions are advised that, as OFM becomes aware of Motor Vehicles Services provided to members of the Foreign Mission Community by a local jurisdiction, it notifies the local jurisdiction of the person's diplomatic or consular status and obtains an administrative block of the person's record.

General Instructions:

1. Log onto E-Gov. Fill out the Application for Registration Mission Vehicle (DS100/DS101).

2. Submit proof of ownership of the Motor Vehicle (See Specific Instructions below)

3. Submit proof of liability insurance. (See Liability Insurance for Motor Vehicles Prior to Registration below.)

Note: If the Motor Vehicle is actually owned by a bona fide dependent, the name of his/her sponsor will be shown as the registered owner and the dependent's name will be shown as the "co-owner". At the time of the disposition (see How to Obtain a Title below), the actual owner's name will appear on the title.

Warning: Under U.S. law, Motor Vehicle registration and insurance cards must be carried in the motor vehicle at all times when it is operated in any U.S. jurisdiction. Motor Vehicle operators must be able to present proof of liability insurance and registration upon request.

Note: If a seller or a financial institution has any questions regarding the obligation to register the Motor Vehicle with OFM, or the non-issuance of an OFM title, please refer them to this publication (www.state.gov/OFM) or ask them to contact OFM.

SPECIFIC INSTRUCTIONS (in addition to the items in General Instructions above)

Registering an imported Motor Vehicle:

1. Log into E-Gov and fill out the Application for Vehicle Registration (Form DS100/101)

2. Submit proof on insurance

3. Submit the copies of certificate of origin (sometimes called the manufacturer's statement of origin), title, and any other foreign registration document. Submit originals once received.

4. Submit a copy of the DS-1504 (Request for Customs Clearance of Merchandise)*

5. Submit a copy of the bill of lading

Note: Registration applications for Motor Vehicles that do not meet the Department of Transportation (DOT) and Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) safety and pollution standards must include DOT Form HS-7* and EPA Form EPA-3520-1* which can be obtained at the Motor Vehicle's U.S. port of entry.

Registering a Motor Vehicle purchased from a dealership:

1. Log onto E-Gov and fill out Application for Vehicle Registration (Form DS100/101)

2. Submit proof of insurance

3. If the Motor Vehicle is new, submit the certificate of origin (sometimes called the manufacturer's statement of origin)

4. If the Motor Vehicle is used, attach the title, and any other documents such as title reassignment forms or power of attorney, which can be obtained from the dealership

5. Submit a copy of the purchase agreement

6. Submit Odometer statement

Note: Always notify the dealership and the financial institution, if any, that the Motor Vehicle must be registered with the Department of State only. If the dealership or a financial institution sends these documents directly to OFM, submit a statement to that effect.

Registering a used Motor Vehicle purchase from an individual outside the Foreign Mission Community:

1. Log onto E-Gov and fill out Application for Vehicle Registration (Form DS-100/101)

2. Submit proof of insurance

3. Submit the certificate of title endorsed by the previous owner to the new applicant

Note: Motor Vehicles may not be operated or parked along a public street or residential area without being registered. Motor Vehicles operated and/or parked without registration are subject to fines and impounding.

Registering a used Motor Vehicle purchased from the Foreign Mission Community:

1. Log onto E-Gov and fill out Application for Vehicle Registration (Form DS-100/101)

2. Submit proof of insurance

3. Submit the sellers' DS-102 (Application for Title)*

Note: If the seller has already submitted a DS-102 through his/her Foreign Mission, submit a statement to that effect. (see Transferring ownership to another mission or eligible mission member below).

Registering a leased Motor Vehicle:

1. Log onto E-Gov and fill out Application for Vehicle Registration (Form DS-100/101)

2. Submit proof of insurance

3. Submit the certificate of origin (sometimes called the manufacturer's statement of origin) or title

4. Submit a copy of the lease agreement


Note: Always notify the dealership that the Motor Vehicle must be registered with the Department of State only. If the dealership or financial institution has sent these documents separately to OFM, submit a statement to that effect.

Processing Initial Registration

If the Application for Registration is complete and all necessary supporting documents have been submitted, the registration package will be ready within 2 to 3 working days in the Washington, D.C. metropolitan area and in the Regional Offices. The registration package will include the following:

1. Two distinctive license plates (motorcycles receive one license plate for display at the rear of the vehicle)

2. A validation decal showing the month and year of expiration

3. A registration card

Note: Vehicle Registrations are valid for one year and expire on the last calendar day of the month in which the Motor Vehicle was initially registered.

Annual Registration Renewal

The Office of Foreign Missions will automatically issue a new registration card and validation decal if the Motor Vehicle's mandatory and required insurance liability coverage is current, up to date and payment for all unpaid parking tickets. Once insurance coverage and the payment of parking ticket fines are verified for each Motor Vehicle, a new registration card and validation decal will be issued. If the new registration card and validation decal have not been received by the middle of the expiration month, please contact OFM.

Refusal of Registration Renewal

Registrations will not be renewed if any Motor Vehicle owned by a member of the Foreign Mission Community of a particular Foreign Mission:

1. is not in full compliance with the liability insurance requirements contained herein

2. has any unpaid parking fines in Washington, D.C. or New York, NY

Note: OFM will inform a Foreign Mission if conditions exist that will result in a refusal of registration renewal for a Foreign Mission or its members.


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