How Vehicle Registration Works

How Vehicle Registration Works

Government Regulations

All vehicles, regardless of class, must be registered in the province of Alberta. Your vehicle registration typically expires once a year (unless you renewed for two years). The Government of Alberta used to mail out renewal notices before your expiry month, but that is no longer the case.

It’s more important now than ever to make sure you know when your renewal month is so that it is processed in time to receive your:

  • New validation sticker to display on your valid licence plate
  • Vehicle registration card

What month does my vehicle registration expire?

The government has a set schedule so you will know which month your vehicle registration expires. Your registration expires at the end of the month that corresponds with the first letter of your last name. Some last names require the first two letters. Check Your Vehicle Registration Expiry Month


What do I need to renew my registration in centre?

  • Your driver’s licence or government issued photo ID
  • Valid proof of insurance (“pink card”)
  • Current Vehicle Registration Certificate (optional, but helps the Registries agent complete the process faster)
  • If you’re renewing a vehicle registration on behalf of the registered owner, you’ll need to provide the registered owner’s current Vehicle Registration Certificate. A faxed, scanned, emailed, or electronic copy of the Certificate works too, but it must be fully legible.

    The Vehicle Registration Certificate (or copy) must not be expired for more than three months and must be a clean renewal—no changes. If you can’t bring the Vehicle Registration Certificate on behalf of the registered owner, they must provide you with a fully completed and signed Authorization for Vehicle Services form.


    Where should I keep my vehicle registration?

    Most drivers store both their registration and insurance in their vehicle’s glovebox or centre console. However, that leaves you vulnerable to identity fraud or home break-in if a thief gets access to your car. Instead, we recommend keeping your vehicle documents in your wallet. Though if you must store them in the vehicle, hide them in an uncommon spot away from view.


    What happens If I don’t renew my vehicle registration?

    If you don’t renew in time, your registration and licence plate will expire. Not only will you be breaking the law under the Traffic Safety Act, but you also run the risk of having to pay a penalty fee. And, if you have any unpaid fines by the time your renewal comes up again next year, you’ll have to clear your overdue account first before you can renew.

    Now that you know why you need to register your vehicle, here’s what you need to know before you renew.