Applying for change of vehicle registration (without change to the vehicle keeper)
If you move to a different registration area, you must transfer your vehicle registration as soon as possible (change the address in the vehicle papers) and apply for a new vehicle registration number. The same applies to any business relocation. Since 1 January 2015, you have the option to keep your vehicle registration number if you so wish irrespective of where you are located in Germany. If you would like to keep your previous vehicle registration number, please notify the new licensing authority after you move. In this case, only the change of address will be entered into part I of the vehicle registration certificate. It is not necessary to affix stamps to the licence plates. However, if particle emissions stickers were attached to your previous license plates, you will need new ones with new stickers.
the registration authorities (Zulassungsbehörde), which are responsible for the principle residence of the owner (otherwise: company premises or location of the relevant subsidiary)
The registration authorities are
- for an urban district (Stadtkreis): the city council (Stadtverwaltung)
- for a rural district (Landkreis): the rural district office (Landratsamt)
The requirements for the registration of the vehicle are as follows:
- You must not have any fees and expenses outstanding from previous registration processes.
In case of payment arrears of more than 30 euros, the licensing authorities may not register your vehicle until you have settled the amount. In case of payment arrears of less than 30 euros, the licensing authorities can decide whether they will register the vehicle anyway or not.
- You may not have any vehicle excise duty debts of 5 euros or more. When calculating the amount, default supplements, interest and lateness surcharges are taken into account.
- Should somebody represent you during the registration process of your vehicle, you must issue them with written power of attorney. This power of attorney must contain a statement of consent that the licensing authorities may inform the representing person of outstanding fees and charges on your part. Your representative must show the power of attorney and identify himself or herself.
You or your representative cannot move your vehicle registration until you have moved your personal registration to or registered with the municipality. You can find further information concerning this process under "Registration in a new municipality" and "Moving or registration within the municipality".
You or your representative must report the transfer of your vehicle registration to the competent licensing authority. Depending on what your licensing authority offers, this can be done using an online service or by downloading a form. The licensing authority may request that you show the vehicle.
If the vehicle was previously registered under your name in another registration area, you may continue using your previous licence plates anywhere in Germany even after transferring your registration.
Should the vehicle have been previously registered in another registration area, you will receive a new registration number. The licensing authority will issue your vehicle with a licence plate and attach the stickers (main inspection and stamp) to it. Should your vehicle have a particle emissions sticker, this will become invalid due to the new registration number. Should you wish to drive in environmental zones and should you not have an exemption permit, you should also apply for a particle emissions sticker during the re-registration process. Please notify the licensing authority should you wish to continue to use your previous registration number in case of moving within the same municipality or rural district. Any existing particle emissions sticker will continue to be valid. You also need a new stamp should you not wish to obtain a new registration number.
Tip: Do you need new numberplates? Then you can contact private providers. You can usually find these near the licensing authorities.
- Valid personal identity document or passport
- Additionally in case of representation:
- Written power of attorney
- Valid personal identity document or passport of the representative
- In case of minors: additional declaration consent and identity documents of the parents/guardians
- For legal entities/companies:
- SEPA direct debit mandate for payment of vehicle tax (Erklärung zum Einzug der Kraftfahrzeugsteuer (SEPA-Lastschriftmandat))
- Registration certificate (Zulassungsbescheinigung) part I or old vehicle registration document (Fahrzeugschein)
If you transfer your vehicle registration from another licensing district, also:
- Registration certificate part II or old vehicle title (Fahrzeugbrief) if you do not intend to continue using your old registration number If you are transferring your vehicle registration from another registration area:
- an electronic confirmation of insurance (eVB) where appropriate. Contact the locally competent licensing authority in advance to clarify whether information concerning your current insurance status may be required.
- Confirmation of insurance (eVB code)
- previous registration plates if you
- require new registration plates or need them on technical grounds
- require new stickers for online deregistration
If you require a registration number from your new administrative authority: Additionally
- Part II of the vehicle registration certificate or old vehicle title
- Proof of a valid main inspection (MI) in the form of the most recent MI report if
- the vehicle is more than three years old, or
- the vehicle was previously licensed as a rental vehicle, taxi or similar, or
- the next MI date is not evident from part I of the vehicle registration certificate.
- Confirmation of reservation if you previously requested a vanity plate from the new licensing authority.
Note: You always need proof of a valid MI if a new registration certificate (part I) is required or if stickers have to be attached to registration plates.
Für die Besteuerung von Kraftfahrzeugen ist seit Februar 2014 die Zollverwaltung des Bundes zuständig. Weitere Informationen und Formulare zum Thema "Kraftfahrzeugsteuer" finden Sie auf den Internetseiten der Zollverwaltung.
- § 13 Fahrzeug-Zulassungsverordnung (FZV) (Mitteilungspflichten bei Änderungen)
- § 1 Gesetz über die Verweigerung der Zulassung von Fahrzeugen bei rückständigen Gebühren und Auslagen (Fahrzeugzulassungsverweigerungsgesetz) (Verweigerung der Zulassung)
- § 3 Verordnung des Innenministeriums über die Durchführung der Fahrzeug-Zulassungsverordnung (DVO-FZV) (Zuteilung von Kennzeichen bei Wechsel des Zulassungsbezirks)
- § 13 Kraftfahrzeugsteuergesetz (Feststellung der Besteuerungsgrundlagen, Nachweis der Besteuerung und Zulassungsverweigerung bei Steuerrückständen)
- Gebührenordnung für Maßnahmen im Straßenverkehr (GebOSt)
The German original version of this text was drafted in close cooperation with the relevant departments. The Verkehrsministerium released it on 16.05.2018. Only the German text is legally binding. The Federal State does not assume any liability for the translated texts.
In cases of doubt or if you have any questions or problems, please contact the relevant authorities directly.