Vehicle Taxes And Fees Late Registration
Colorado law requires a person to register the person's motor vehicle within 90 days after moving to Colorado. Section 2 of the act requires a person who registers a vehicle after moving to Colorado to:
- Provide documentation of the vehicle's previous registration that contains the registration dates or the vehicle's bill of sale;
- Provide evidence of the date that the person became a Colorado resident; and
- Pay the vehicle's registration taxes and fees that are prorated from the date the person became a Colorado resident to the date the person applied to register the vehicle, unless the vehicle is used for interstate commerce or unless the owner registered the vehicle within 90 days after becoming a resident.
The act requires an owner who fails to register the vehicle within 90 days after moving to Colorado to pay assessed back taxes and fees. The allocation and use of the taxes and fees does not change.
Section 3 imposes late fees for failing to register a vehicle when appropriate after obtaining temporary tags for the vehicle. Section 3 also imposes prorated registration taxes and fees to capture missed revenue if a person fails to register a vehicle when required by law.
Section 4 lowers the registration fee that is based on the age of a vehicle:
- For motor vehicles less than 7 years old, the fee is lowered from $12 to $9;
- For motor vehicles at least 7 years old but less than 10 years old, the fee is lowered from $10 to $7; and
- For motor vehicles 10 years old or older, the fee is lowered from $7 to $5.
The department of revenue (department) may adjust the fees to make the act revenue neutral but may not lower a fee below one dollar or raise the fees above the original amount from which the act lowered the fees. In 2026, this fee decrease repeals, and the fees return to their original amounts. One dollar of the fee is retained by the department and used to offset the cost to the department and the authorized agents to implement the act.
Colorado law imposes a fee of $1.50 on motor vehicles, trailers, and semitrailers. The fee is sent to the county where the vehicle is registered for its road and bridge fund. Section 5 lowers this fee to $0.94 to offset the increased taxes and fees collected by the county under sections 2 and 3. The department will annually adjust the fee amount to keep the act revenue neutral to the counties. This process is repealed on July 1, 2026, so that the fee returns to $1.50.
To implement the act, $248,249 is appropriated to the department of revenue from the Colorado DRIVES vehicle services account in the highway users tax fund.
(Note: This summary applies to this bill as enacted.)