Six Pitfalls To Avoid When Registering Your Vehicle In Ontario

If you are in the market for a new car and you purchase it from a dealer, they will probably take care of everything that needs to be completed for its registration. This will not be the case if you purchase a used vehicle. You will be responsible for ensuring that all of the details are completed before you can legally drive on the roads. Being on the lookout for these pitfalls, can help to make the process stress free.

Pitfall #1:  Not Registering Your Vehicle In Time

When you purchase a vehicle, you only have six days from the date of your transaction to register your vehicle and apply for a licence plate sticker. If you have not completed all of the requirements you need to secure your sticker, you may be able to apply for a ten day temporary licence plate sticker. The temporary sticker will allow you to drive the vehicle while you are collecting the additional documentation you will be required to have.

Pitfall #2:  Not Having The Correct Documentation

To register your vehicle, there is certain information you must be able to present to the Driver and Vehicle Licence Office. The transaction is often easier to complete if both you and the seller are present at the same time. Although this is not required, this will help to ensure that everything is completed correctly.

You will need the following information:

  • The used vehicle information package you received from the seller. This should be signed by the seller if they are not present.
  • Your insurance information
  • An application for transfer filled out, signed, and dated by the seller
  • Your identification
  • The Drive Clean Certificate
  • Funds to pay the required fees

If you will be using licence plates that you already have, you will also need to present the plate portion of your permit.

Pitfall #3:  Not Having Sufficient Funds To Complete Your Transaction

There are numerous fees which will have to be paid when you register your vehicle in Ontario. Some of these fees have recently increased. In addition to your registration fees, you will also be required to pay sales tax, purchase your licence plates, and your licence plate validation stickers. You will also be required to pay any outstanding tickets, or other fees you may have.

Pitfall #4:  Not Having Valid Auto Insurance

Before you will be allowed to register a vehicle in Ontario, you will have to be able to show that you have valid automotive insurance. At the minimum, you must have third-party liability insurance. For your protection, your coverage should also include medical coverage, and loss of income, which will cover you if you are involved in an automotive accident. You may also choose to carry:

  • Collision insurance - which will cover any damage that occurs to your vehicle as a result of an accident.
  • Comprehensive insurance - which will protect you against vandalism and theft.

Pitfall #5:  Failing To Provide A Customs Clearance Vehicle Import Form

If your vehicle was purchased from outside of Canada, there are some specific steps that you will have to take in order to bring it into the country. Once these steps are completed and in order to register your vehicle, you must be able to provide a customs clearance vehicle import form 1. 

Pitfall #6:  Failing To Update Your Vehicle Permit

If there are any changes that need to be made to your vehicle permit, they must be made through a ServiceOntario Centre within six days of the change. Some of the changes may include:

  • Make/model/year of your vehicle
  • Color/body type
  • Fuel type/number of cylinders
  • Gross weight
  • Vehicle identification number (VIN)

These changes can be made when you complete your registration application form. Click here for more information.