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All Topics > Out-of-State Vehicle Registration > Renew Vehicle Operated by My Daughter Out of State With No Smog Test

Renew Vehicle Operated by My Daughter Out of State With No Smog Test

Last Updated: 12-22-2022

My daughter operates a vehicle in Colorado because she is a student there. The vehicle is registered to me in California because that is where my daughter had lived, and where the car was purchased. The registration needs to be renewed right away. She needs either a smog check or an exemption. What is the best approach? I need to take care of this asap. Her registration is expired and I do not want her to get pulled over.


You can use a REG 5103 for smog check exemption through the DMV.

Easy situation to handle since you are physically located in California, and due to the fact the vehicle is registered to you (is in your name). File for a Smog Check Exemption using a REG 5103, either by mail, in-person at a local DMV office, or online through NeedTags.

Filing a REG 5103

If you'll be mailing in the renewal notice make sure to include the REG 5103 with your payment. It will take around 30 days for the DMV to receive and review the smog exemption. Once approved, the new registration card and sticker will be mailed to the address on DMV records. Note, the DMV does not mail to any address other than what is on record.

If you visit the DMV in person (appointment required), you may have a supervisor review your smog check exemption request in-person. If approved, you'll receive renewed registration on-the-spot. Once you're issued the new sticker and registration card, you may then mail them to your daughter out-of-state.

Keep in mind, by filling for the smog check exemption, you are promising to have the vehicle smog tested as soon as it returns to California.

We mentioned earlier that it was convenient that the vehicle is registered to you and that you are physically in California because should you have personally been out of state, visiting the DMV would not have been an option and having renewed the vehicle's registration by mail would have only resulted in the new sticker and registration card being delivered to your registration address in California; not out of state. If such was the case, we'd have recommend using our online registration renewal system as we are able to mail registration to any address in the United States, and as fast as overnight.

How to get your tags faster with a smog check exemption through NeedTags.

Rather than mailing the REG 5103 to the DMV, you'd complete your renewal online through our system and email the REG 5103 copy to us. We'd then complete your registration renewal without a smog check and mail you your new tag and registration card to any address you choose, same-day.

Note: This is an additional paid service. See the REG 5103 Quick Guide, below.

Related Material

REG 5103 (Quick Guide)
How to Renew Registration While Car is Out of State
Start DMV Registration Renewal Here 

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