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Kentucky Vehicle Registration

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Kentucky Vehicle Registration Summary

Read our Kentucky Vehicle Registration page to learn about how to register a vehicle with the Kentucky Transportation Cabinet (KTC). You will also learn how to apply for car registration as a new resident, KY registration renewals, vehicle inspections, duplicate registration, address changes, Kentucky car insurance requirements, registrations for vehicles purchased from a dealer versus private party transactions, and car registration for military personnel.

Registering a Vehicle in Kentucky

To own or lease a vehicle in Kentucky, you must register it in person at your local Kentucky county clerk’s office.

Kentucky processes both registration and titling applications at the same time.

What to bring to the KTC:

Continue reading below for more specific details about how to register a vehicle in Kentucky.

Registering Vehicles Purchased from a Dealership

After you purchase either a new or used vehicle from a licensed Kentucky car dealer, visit your local county clerk’s office and register your vehicle. Present all of the following to the KTC during your visit:

Vehicles Purchased from a Private Party

To register a vehicle with a Kentucky title, visit your local KY county clerk’s office and present:

KY Vehicle Registration for New Residents

New to Kentucky?

NOTE: Kentucky law requires you to transfer your out-of-state title and register your vehicle within 15 days of becoming a KY resident.

To register your vehicle, visit your local KY county clerk’s office and present:

  • A valid driver’s license or ID.
  • A completed Application for Kentucky Certificate of Title/Registration (Form TC 96-182).
  • Proof of ownership (i.e., your vehicle title from your previous state).
    • If there is a lien on your vehicle, the lienholder must provide a security agreement signed by the lien holder and current vehicle owner.
  • A valid out-of-state registration card.
  • Power of attorney from the leasing company, if you lease your vehicle. You must also provide the name and address of the leasing company.
  • A certified sheriff’s vehicle inspection.
  • Proof of Kentucky car insurance.

  • Payment for KY car registration, fees, and taxes.
    • You must also show proof of payment for all taxes from your previous state, if applicable.

KY Registration for Military Drivers

Registration for Non-Residents

The KTC does NOT require non-resident military service members stationed in Kentucky (but currently out-of-state residents) to register their vehicles in Kentucky.

During deployment, non-resident military personnel must have current registration and valid car insurance from their home states.

If you choose to register your vehicle in Kentucky, please follow the process outlined in Vehicle Registration for New Residents.

KY Military Residents

Active duty Kentucky military residents must follow the steps outlined in our Registering a Vehicle in Kentucky section. Certain military personnel may be exempt from paying personal vehicle Ad Valorem tax. Contact the Property Valuation Administrator’s (PVA) office in your county of residence to find out if you qualify.

Kentucky military residents stationed out-of-state can register their vehicle through a local Kentucky county clerk’s office. To proceed, submit the following:

NOTE: Please contact your local Kentucky county clerk’s office for specific details on your KY car registration, fees and taxes.

Renewing Your Registration in Kentucky

In Kentucky, you can renew your vehicle registration online, by mail, or in personat your local county clerk’s office.

The KTC will send a registration renewal notice several weeks before your registration is set to expire. Your renewal notice contains the following details:

  • Your renewal fees.
  • Registration expiration date.
  • Vehicle identification number (VIN).
  • Your address on file with the KTC.

NOTE: You may not renew your KY registration if you have outstanding property taxes.

For more details about renewing your Kentucky vehicle registration, see Kentucky Renewals.

Replace a Lost or Damaged Registration

If your KY registration card is lost, stolen, or damaged, you may apply for a duplicate by mail, or in person at your nearest county clerk’s office.

Kentucky Registration Replacements In Person

To replace your Kentucky registration card in person, visit your local county clerk’s office and present:

Registration Replacements By Mail

To replace your Kentucky registration card by mail, gather the following:

  • Mail everything to your local county clerk’s office. The KTC will mail you a replacement in approximately 1 week.
  • Changes to Your Kentucky Car Registration

    In Kentucky, you can update your name and address on your vehicle registration.

    Please see below to learn exactly how to handle registration changes.

    Name Changes

    The KTC allows you to make changes to your name on your Kentucky vehicle registration in person.

    However, you must first file your new name with the Social Security office and change your name on your Kentucky driver’s license.

    Name Changes in Person

    To change your name on your vehicle registration, visit your local county clerk’s office and bring your:

    • Kentucky driver license.
    • Current certificate of titleand/or registration.
    • Legal documents supporting your name change, such as a:
      • Marriage license if the name change is due to marriage.
      • Divorce decree.
      • Court-ordered name change document.
    • Payment for the $3 duplicate registration fee.
      • This fee is $6 if notarized by the county clerk’s office.

    The KTC charges a $9 replacement title fee to change your name on your title.

    Address Changes on Kentucky Vehicle Registration

    You can change your address with the KTC in person by visiting your nearest county clerk’s office.

    You have 10 days from the time of your move to change your address with the KTC if you are a current resident. You have 30 days if you are a new resident.

    Address Changes in Person

    To change your address in person, visit any county clerk’s office and bring your:

    • Vehicle title.
    • Photo ID or a piece of physical mail with a current postmark.
    • Payment for the $3 duplicate registration fee.
      • The fee is $6 if notarized by the county clerk’s office.

    Vehicle Registration Fees in KY

    The KTC has a simple fixed fee schedule for the registration and titling of your vehicle.

    KY Vehicle Registration Fees

    Below are some of the current Kentucky registration and registration-related fees:

    • Passenger vehicle annual registration: $21
    • Original title application fee: $9
    • Replacement title fee: $9
    • Replacement registration card fee: $3, or $6 if notarized by the county clerk
    • Tag transfer fee: $17
    • VIN inspection fee: $5
    • Road usage tax: 6% on the cost of the vehicle

    For other registration fees in Kentucky not shown here, please contact your nearest county clerk’s office.

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    Last Verified:
    Jul 11, 2022