Wisconsin Car Title Transfer and Registration

Vehicle registration must be completed with the Wisconsin Division of Motor Vehicles (DMV) in order to legally drive on WI roadways. So what do you need to take with you to complete your transaction the first time? It depends on how you own your automobile (leasing, making payments, or owner with title) and how you want to register (single, joint, business or transfer to family member) your automobile.

You must register your vehicle with the Wisconsin DMV after establishing residency. Most Wisconsin vehicle registration certificates are valid for 1 year.

Vehicle Registration & Title Transfer Process

To complete the registration of your vehicle and transfer the title with the Wisconsin Division of Motor Vehicles (DMV), you must provide the following:

  • Your vehicle title & current out-of-state car registration.
  • A completed Title/License Plate Application (Form MV1).
  • Proof of identification (e.g. driver’s license, valid U.S. passport, military ID).
  • Proof of sales tax paid to your prior state if you’ve owned the vehicle for less than 90 days.
  • Payment for registration and title fees, plus applicable municipal or county wheel tax.

To apply for a temporary 90 day registration while waiting for your permanent registration to arrive, visit your local WI Division of Motor Vehicles office with:

If you’re a non-resident shopping for a vehicle in Wisconsin, you may buy a temporary plate to drive the vehicle home. Visit any Wisconsin DMV office to obtain them.

To be sure you have everything you need before getting in line at the Wisconsin Division of Motor Vehicles (DMV) office, visit www.transfermyauto.com, answer 3 to 5 questions to generate a checklist of what is needed. Military personnel often get tax breaks in many states, your checklist will indicate if this is the case.