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Do you need car insurance to register a vehicle in the state of Utah?


According to the Utah Division of Motor Vehicles (DMV) no-Fault insurance must be maintained on all passenger cars and trucks throughout the vehicle's registration period if:

  • The owner/operator is a resident;
  • The owner/operator is a non-resident who operates a motor vehicle that has been physically present in Utah for 90 days during the preceding 365 days. Under such circumstances, a non-resident owner must maintain no-fault insurance while the vehicle remains in the state; and,
  • All motor vehicles, (off-highway vehicles excepted) must maintain owner/operator security (liability coverage) during the registration period

UT law requires motorists to carry proof of insurance and present it to any law enforcement officer upon request. In addition, for several years, Utah has compared its motor vehicle registration file with a database of insurance policies written to Utah residents. When the computer program discovers a vehicle registered in UT does not have a corresponding insurance policy, a letter is sent to the vehicle's registered owner, requiring the owner to provide proof of insurance.

What the UT DMV states that one should bring the following for each vehicle they are going to register:

  • Utah safety inspection certificate, where required
  • Utah gas or diesel emission certificate, where required
  • Serial number (VIN) inspection, where required
  • Title, if not held by lien holder
  • Most recent registration

To register and title in Utah for the first time an Application to Register/Title must be completed and required documentation provided. Required documentation may include a vehicle title, a bill of sale, a previous registration and safety and emission certificates. Also all vehicles in Utah are subject to either an age-based uniform fee or a 1.5 percent uniform property assessment fee. The appropriate fee must be paid when you register your vehicle.

Plates and/or decals will be issued to you at the completion of your motor vehicle transaction. All plates are issued to the owner of the vehicle and should be removed and returned to a motor vehicle office if the vehicle is sold.

The DMV does not state that proof of insurance needs to be brought to their office when registering a car however remember as we stated earlier Utah compares its motor vehicle registration files with a database of insurance policies written to Utah residents and if they do not see an insurance policy for a vehicle you will receive notice and have to provide them with proof of insurance.

As of 1/1/2009 the Utah minimum liability limits were raise to25/65/15. These numbers stand for $25,000 per person for bodily injury, $65,000 per accident for bodily injury and $15,000 per accident for property damage.

The no-fault law of Utah also requires motorists to buy a minimum of $3,000 in personal protection injury (PIP). This coverage basically will pay for your medical expenses in case of an accident.

To help protect against damages caused to you and your passengers by an uninsured driver, Utah state law requires a minimum Uninsured/Underinsured Motorist coverage of $25,000 per person, $65,000 per accident for any bodily injury caused by an uninsured driver. You must carry these coverages unless you reject them in writing.

Review our Utah Auto and Car Insurance page to learn more about Utah car insurance. Contact the Utah Division of Motor Vehicles to find out for certain if proof of car insurance is required at registration time or only if your insurance provider must have already transmitted your insurance policy information to the state's database.

For auto insurance quotes online for UT, follow this link. 


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