Frequently Asked Questions

If I have questions about motor vehicle registering, licensing and titling, who do I contact?

You can contact your local county treasurer’s office or the SD Division of Motor Vehicles at 605-773-3541.


What are the different fees for motor vehicle licensing and registration?

Non-commercial vehicle fees are issued in accordance to the vehicle's age and weight. Visit the staggered, non-commercial vehicle fee page for current rates. Other fees as well as policies on other vehicles can be found at our titling and registration page.

Where can I renew my vehicle registrations?

    1. County Treasurer’s office
    2. Visit one of our self-service terminal locations
      1. Aberdeen--Kessler's, 615 6th Ave. SE
      2. Brookings--Hy-Vee Food Store, 790 22nd Ave. S.
      3. Mitchell--County Fair Food Store, 1305 W. Havens Ave.
      4. Pierre--Department of Revenue , 445E Capitol Ave.
      5. Rapid City--Pennington County Administration Building, 130 Kansas City St.
      6. Rapid City--Rushmore Mall, 2200 N. Maple Ave,
      7. Sioux Falls-- Hy-Vee Food Store, 4101 S. Louise Ave.             
      8. Sioux Falls-- Get-N-Go, 5400 E Arrowhead Ave.
      9. Watertown-- Hy-Vee Food Store, 1320 9th Ave. SE
      10. Yankton-- Hy-Vee Food Store, 2100 Broadway Ave.              
    3. Individuals and companies may renew online at http://mysdcars.sd.gov.


What is ELT?

ELT stands for Electronic Lien Title.  When you have a lienholder on your vehicle loan, your title will remain in an electronic form only until the time your loan is paid off and the lienholder releases their interest in your vehicle.  At that time a paper title will be printed and mailed to you.  South Dakota has been an ELT state since October 2012.


How do I obtain a duplicate title?

Vehicles owners may obtain a duplicate title by completing an application for duplicate certificate of title along with submitting a $10 fee. Submit the form and payment to a local county treasurer’s office or mail to the SD Division of Motor Vehicles at 445 E. Capital Ave Pierre, SD 57501.


What if my address has changed?

Contact your local county treasurer’s office to change your address in your customer record or visit http://mysdcars.sd.gov.


How do I replace a damaged or lost license plate or tags?

Contact your local county treasurer’s office to complete an affidavit for duplicate license plate/validation sticker.  Fees can be found on the form.


Can I get an extension on the 45 day requirement to title and register a newly purchased vehicle?

Effective July 1, 2015, vehicle owners have 45 days to apply for title and registration of an aquired vehicle. All vehicles aquired prior to July 1, 2015 must be titled and registered within 30 days.

There is not a provision for extensions on the 45 day requirement. Interest and penalties will accrue on the motor vehicle excise tax.  All fees are assessed from the purchase date regardless of when an applicant applies for title and registration.

Interest is at a rate of 1 percent or $5, whichever is greater, for the first month; and 1 percent per month thereafter on any application made after 45 days from the date of purchase. (Interest is not calculated on interest.)  A one-time penalty equal to 10 percent of the tax or $10, whichever is greater, is automatically applied against any application made after 60 days from the purchase date.



Do I pay motor vehicle excise tax if I transfer a title to my child?

No, you don’t.   A vehicle is exempt from tax when it is transferred without consideration (no money is exchanged) between spouses, between a parent and child and between siblings.  A title transfer fee of $10.00 will apply. 


What do I do with my license plates from my old car when I purchase a new car?

South Dakota is a plate with owner state.  This means that the license plates are retained by the owner.  If you purchase a new vehicle, you will transfer the license plates from your old vehicle to your newly acquired vehicle.  You can do this at your local county treasurer’s office.  Be sure to take your old plates with you to the county treasurer’s office.


I sold my vehicle privately to an individual, how do I print a seller’s permit for the new owner?

A seller’s permit allows the new owner to drive legally while waiting to apply for title. A seller's permit may be printed by the seller at the online customer portal at http://mysdcars.sd.gov or may also be obtained at a county treasurer's office. The seller's permit is valid for 45 days. The seller has 45 days to deliver title. If necessary, the buyer may purchase a 5 to 15-day permit from the county treasurer's office as per SDCL 32-5-8.3.


What is the damage disclosure?

Effective July 1, 2015, damage disclosure is no longer mandated. Damage disclosure will remain noted on titles issued prior to July, 1, 2015.


What do I need to do if I move to South Dakota from out of state?

If you have titled and licensed your vehicles in another state, you will be granted reciprocity when you come to South Dakota and will not have to pay any additional tax if your state’s tax rate is above South Dakota’s 4% tax rate.  If a state with no tax or a lower tax rate than South Dakota’s 4%, then you will need to pay the additional tax rate to match the 4%.  You have 90 days from your date of arrival to title and license your vehicle in South Dakota.


Can I register my vehicle in South Dakota if I live out of state?

You should know that your state may prohibit registering your vehicle in another state.

You will need your original out of state titles, a copy of your state driver license, social security number, and an Application for Title (MV-608). Take this paperwork to your local county treasurer’s office to complete registration process.  They will be able to tell you the appropriate fees pertaining to that county.



What do I do if I purchased an ATV?

In South Dakota an ATV MUST be titled.  If purchased in South Dakota, an ATV is subject to the 4% motor vehicle excise tax.  However, if purchased by an out of state business, you will need to show proof of tax paid to your local Department of Revenue office. 


How do I do a title search on a vehicle that was registered in South Dakota?

    1. You will need to complete a Drivers Privacy Protection Application (DPPA).  Take a local county treasurer’s office or mail to SD Division of Motor Vehicles (address can be found in contact us area).  You must qualify to receive this information with one of the following reasons: 
      1. For use by any government agency
      2. For any state authorized purpose relating to the operation of a motor vehicle, public safety or for use in connection with car safety, prevention of car theft, and promotion of driver safety
      3. For use by a business to verify the accuracy of personal information submitted to that business to prevent fraud or pursue legal remedies
      4. In connection with court, agency or self-regulatory body proceedings
      5. For research purposes so long as the information is not further disclosed or used to contact the individuals to whom the data pertains
      6. For use by insurers in connection with claims investigations, antifraud activities, rating or underwriting
      7. To notify vehicle owners that their vehicle has been towed or impounded
      8. For use by a licensed private investigative agencies or security services for any purpose by the DPPA
      9. For use in connection with private toll transportation services


How do I confirm a lien on a vehicle?



I sold my vehicle, how do I report the sale?

Log into the online customer portal at http://mysdcars.sd.gov, select the vehicle that was sold and choose report of sale in the dropdown menu.


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