Texas DMV waiver still in effect

The Texas Department of Motor Vehicles temporary waiver for titling and registration requirements is in effect, which means that an expired registration sticker shouldn’t get you pulled over, but you should still be insured and carry proof of insurance.

Gov. Greg Abbott on March 16 announced the temporary extension for obtaining initial vehicle registration, renewing registration, titling, and renewing a permanent disabled parking placard so that customers aren’t forced to visit county tax assessor-collector offices in person during the coronavirus pandemic. The extension also covers individuals with an expired 30-day temporary permit to obtain another permit or Texas registration.

The waiver, which applies to all vehicle owners in every county, is in effect statewide until 60 days after TxDMV announces that normal registration, titling and other services have resumed, according to the department. Law enforcement agencies and tax assessor-collector offices around the state were notified of the waiver, according to TxDMV.

Meanwhile, vehicle owners still have the option to renew registration or use other TxDMV online services at www.txdmv.gov. Customers can also renew via mail or, if they’re comfortable, at the county tax assessor-collector office.

Also still temporarily suspended by order of the governor are commercial vehicle registration requirements to travel in the state, making it faster and easier for commercial vehicle operators to provide COVID-19 disaster relief assistance, according to TxDMV.

“These suspensions apply to the transportation of supplies, medical equipment, and similar materials that are necessary for preparing for, responding to, and mitigating the spread of novel coronavirus,” according to the department, which says the suspensions do not change safety and insurance requirements.

The suspensions will remain in force until the governor’s office says otherwise or until the disaster declaration Abbott announced on March 13 is lifted.

TxDMV spokesman Adam Shaivitz said vehicle owners whose registrations are expired will be assigned their original registration month no matter when they renew under the waiver.

“You would still have the same renewal month, so if just hypothetically let’s say (your registration) expired in August and you decide to go ahead and renew it now or renew it in November, then your next sticker would be August 2021,” he said. “You would still be paying for a year’s worth of registration, because even throughout the waiver period you were permitted to operate the vehicle on state roads. What was temporarily waived was the requirement to complete those transactions, but the fees would still apply once you renewed.”

“One thing I think is important to remember is that you don’t need to wait until normal operations resume to take care of these services, because we’ve kept the services available throughout the waiver period.”

Shaivitz could give no estimate on when the waiver could be lifted.

“A final date has not been identified yet, although we are working in collaboration with the office of the governor and our stakeholders like the tax assessor/collectors,” he said. “They handle transactions as well. But as of now the waiver itself is still in effect.”

Updates will be provided on the department’s website, www.txdmv.gov.