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Time to register your car!

Car registration deadlines were extended amid town office and BMV closures due to COVID-19, but now Mainers need to make sure their paperwork is up to date.

MAINE, USA — Mainers once again need to make sure their cars are registered. In March, Governor Janet Mills issued a civil state of emergency for Maine which extended deadlines for car registrations. Back when that civil state of emergency was put in place, many town offices and Bureau of Motor Vehicles branches were closed. 

But as businesses across the state reopen, so do state and town offices. Maine Bureau of Motor Vehicle branch offices are now open by appointment only, and many town offices are open as well. Those are places you'll need to visit if you're behind on your car registration or need to register a new vehicle.

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"If you can access the services either using the online renewal service or you can get to a town office and pay your bills. Or you've got a new vehicle, and have been driving around since March on the 14-day plates and can get to a branch office and get plates and get the registration completed than you should really go ahead and get that done," said Maine secretary of state Matthew Dunlap. 

Despite a civil state of emergency still in place in Maine, that order has been amended to require all Mainers capable of registering their cars to do so. 

If your town offers rapid renewal, the town office is open, or you can get to a BMV branch office you are required to register your vehicle. You may be exempt from these if your town office doesn't offer rapid renewal and the office is closed. You also may be temporarily exempt if you're awaiting an appointment at BMV.

 If you are exempt and your vehicle registration has expired, the state has provided a letter that acts as a temporary registration which will remain in effect until the vehicle owner’s municipality or BMV is open to complete registrations. 

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