Waiting in line at anyLouisiana Office of Motor Vehiclesoutpost can be a drag. And if you're a new Louisiana resident, the process for registering your car can be confusing.
Registering a car in Louisiana differs depending on whether you've brought an old car from out of state or buy a new one here. Either way, get ready to cough up money and gather paperwork.
And keep in mind that you have to get all this done within 30 days of your arrival.
Here's what to do:
Out-of-state old car
To transfer an out-of-state vehicle registration to Louisiana, first you have to fill out an application. Seeherefor the application.
Along with that application, you must give the OMV:
- A copy of your driver's license
Now, the money. What's for sureis that you'll be charged the following:
- $68.50 for a title fee
Additional fees can rack up if you're transferring title and registration for other kinds of vehicles, like motorcycles, trailers, motor homes or commercial vehicles.
- For a more detailed breakdown of registration/title transfer fees, see
Next, the tricky part: If you trekked your old car out to Louisiana, you'll have to pay a "road use tax." This can get complicated.
Each parish - and oftentimes each city in a particular parish - has its own rate for calculating how much tax to charge for your vehicle, based on the vehicle's loan value or average trade-in price. Loan values and trade-in prices are determined by National Automobile Dealers Association guidebooks.
- Look up tax rates
If your car isn't searchable in those guidebooks, then the parish- or city-specific road use tax will apply to the vehicle's original invoice price, minus 15 percent. For example, if you own a2010 Hyundai Elantra with a NADA average trade-in price of $3,450 and you're moving to New Orleans - assesses a5 percenttax rate - then your final road use tax would be $172.50.
But! You could be eligible for a tax credit up to 4 percent, depending on which state you just left.
- For more information on road use tax, see
Buying a new car
Now, if you've landed in Louisiana car-less and are looking to buy a ride, you don't have to pay the road use tax. But you'll still have to pay other fees as well as state sales tax, which uses the same rates as the road use tax.
All these fees and taxes can be paid by whatever means you want, so long as you don't send any cash in the mail.
(Military personnel who import vehicles into Louisiana while on active duty are exempt from paying the road use tax, so long as they have proof they previously paid a sales tax.)
If you purchase a new or used car in Louisiana, the dealership should handle all the registration and title paperwork that was listed above. But, if you didn't buy through a dealer, you'll need to hand OMV a few more documents on top of the ones listed above, including:
- The Manufacturer's Statement of Origin, notarized
It's a lot to digest, especially if you just moved here and are trying to get settled. For more information on out-of-state vehicle transfers, seehere. For title transfers, seehere.
How to get a marriage license in New Orleans
Couples getting married in New Orleans must obtain a marriage license from the Louisiana Department of Health, which is an easy task but requi