Code Section Group

Vehicle Code - VEH

DIVISION 3. REGISTRATION OF VEHICLES AND CERTIFICATES OF TITLE [4000 - 9808]

  ( Division 3 enacted by Stats. 1959, Ch. 3. )

CHAPTER 6. Registration and Weight Fees [9101 - 9808]

  ( Chapter 6 enacted by Stats. 1959, Ch. 3. )

ARTICLE 4. Payment of Fees [9550 - 9564]
  ( Article 4 enacted by Stats. 1959, Ch. 3. )

9550.
  

All fees required to be paid by a vehicle dealer, manufacturer, manufacturer branch, remanufacturer, remanufacturer branch, distributor, distributor branch, representative, or transporter, in accordance with this code, for any license or special plates shall be paid at the time application is made to the department.

(Amended by Stats. 1983, Ch. 1286, Sec. 23.)

9551.
  

All fees required to be paid by an automobile dismantler, in accordance with this code, for any license, or special plates, shall be paid at the time application is made to the department.

(Amended by Stats. 1971, Ch. 1214.)

9551.2.
  

(a) When an application is made for a renewal or initial registration of a vehicle, the department shall apply the amount of any operative offset established by subdivision (a) of Section 10754 of the Revenue and Taxation Code. The department shall alter its billing notice for vehicle license fees to indicate the amount of the vehicle license fee for each vehicle as calculated under Section 10752 or 10752.1 of the Revenue and Taxation Code, or under Section 18115 of the Health and Safety Code, and the amount of the applicable offset as required by subdivision (a) of Section 10754 of the Revenue and Taxation Code. The amount of the offset shall be identified on the billing notice as the “VLF Offset.” The Department of Motor Vehicles shall, as required by Section 11000 of the Revenue and Taxation Code, provide information to the Controller with respect to the amount of offsets subject to this subdivision.

(b) This section shall become operative on July 1, 1999, or on that earlier date that is determined by both the director of the department, and the Director of the Department of Housing and Community Development, to be feasible for the implementation of this section.

(Added by Stats. 1998, Ch. 322, Sec. 104. Effective August 20, 1998. Section operative July 1, 1999, or sooner, by its own provisions.)

9552.
  

(a) Whenever any vehicle is operated upon any highway of this state without the fees first having been paid as required by this code, and those fees have not been paid within 20 days of its first operation, those fees are delinquent, except as provided in subdivision (b).

(b) Fees are delinquent whenever application for renewal of registration, or any application for renewal of special license plates, is made after midnight of the expiration date of the registration or special plates, or 60 days after the date the registered owner is notified by the department pursuant to Section 1661, whichever is later.

(c) Whenever any person has received as transferee a properly endorsed certificate of ownership and the transfer fee has not been paid as required by this code within 10 days, the fee is delinquent.

(d) Whenever any person becomes an automobile dismantler, dealer, manufacturer, manufacturer branch, distributor, distributor branch, or transporter without first having paid the license and special plate fees as required by this code, the fees are delinquent.

(Amended by Stats. 2002, Ch. 805, Sec. 13. Effective September 23, 2002.)

9553.
  

(a) A penalty shall be added upon any delinquent application as provided in Section 9552, except as provided in Section 4604 or 9706, or in subdivision (b).

(b) When renewal fee penalties have not accrued with respect to a vehicle and the vehicle is transferred, the transferee has 20 days from the date of the transfer to pay the registration fees which become due without payment of penalties or to file a certification pursuant to subdivision (a) of Section 4604 if the vehicle will not be operated, moved, or left standing upon any highway during the subsequent registration year, except as provided in subdivision (c).

(c) (1) A dealer or lessor-retailer submitting an application for registration or transfer of a used vehicle shall have 30 days from the date of sale to submit the fees, without the penalty that otherwise would be required under subdivision (a).

(2) This subdivision does not apply to penalties due or accrued prior to the date of sale by the dealer or lessor-retailer.

(d) A penalty shall be added if the fees specified in Section 9255 are not paid within 20 days after they become delinquent.

(e) In addition to the imposition of monetary fines or fees as specified in this section, delinquent registration may result in impoundment of the vehicle pursuant to Section 22651.

(Amended by Stats. 2002, Ch. 805, Sec. 14. Effective September 23, 2002.)

9553.5.
  

(a) Whenever fees have not been paid in full for an application for registration of vehicles registered pursuant to Article 4 (commencing with Section 8050) of Chapter 4, the registrant shall have 20 days from the date of notice by the department to pay the balance of the fees due.

(b) Failure to pay the balance of the fees due within 20 days shall subject the application to penalties, as defined in Sections 9554 and 9554.5, on the unpaid portion of the California fees due.

(Amended by Stats. 2008, Ch. 756, Sec. 20. Effective September 30, 2008.)

9553.7.
  

The penalty for delinquency with respect to any transfer is fifteen dollars ($15) and applies only to the last transfer.

(Added by Stats. 2008, Ch. 756, Sec. 21. Effective September 30, 2008.)

9554.
  

(a) (1) A penalty shall be added on any application for renewal of registration made later than midnight of the date of expiration or on or after the date penalties become due. Penalties shall be computed as provided in Section 9559 and shall be collected with the fee.

(2) Notwithstanding paragraph (1), commencing on July 1, 2011, a penalty shall not be added if an application for renewal of registration, or an application for renewal of special license plates, is made within 30 days after midnight of the expiration date of the registration or special plates. This paragraph shall become inoperative on January 1, 2012.

(b) The penalty assessment for the delinquent payment of the registration fee specified in Section 9250 shall be as follows:

(1) Ten dollars ($10) for a delinquency period of 10 days or less.

(2) Fifteen dollars ($15) for a delinquency period of more than 10 days, to and including 30 days.

(3) Thirty dollars ($30) for a delinquency period of more than 30 days, to and including one year.

(4) Fifty dollars ($50) for a delinquency period of more than one year, to and including two years.

(5) One hundred dollars ($100) for a delinquency period of more than two years.

(c) The penalty assessment for the delinquent payment of the weight fee specified in Section 9400 or 9400.1 and the vehicle license fee as specified in Section 10751 of the Revenue and Taxation Code shall be as follows:

(1) Ten percent of the vehicle license fee, or the combined amount of the vehicle license fee and the weight fee if the vehicle is subject to both fees, for a delinquency period of 10 days or less.

(2) Twenty percent of the vehicle license fee, or the combined amount of the vehicle license fee and the weight fee if the vehicle is subject to both fees, for a delinquency period of more than 10 days, to and including 30 days.

(3) Sixty percent of the vehicle license fee, or the combined amount of the vehicle license fee and the weight fee if the vehicle is subject to both fees, for a delinquency period of more than 30 days, to and including one year.

(4) Eighty percent of the vehicle license fee, or the combined amount of the vehicle license fee and the weight fee if the vehicle is subject to both fees, for a delinquency period of more than one year, to and including two years.

(5) One hundred sixty percent of the vehicle license fee, or the combined amount of the vehicle license fee and the weight fee if the vehicle is subject to both fees, for a delinquency period of more than two years.

(d) On or after January 1, 2003, a penalty assessment for weight fees not reported and not paid within 20 days as required by Section 9406 shall be applied to the difference in the weight fee as follows:

(1) Ten percent of the fee for a delinquency period of 10 days or less.

(2) Twenty percent of the fee for a delinquency period more than 10 days, to and including 30 days.

(3) Sixty percent of the fee for a delinquency period more than 30 days, to and including one year.

(4) Eighty percent of the fee for a delinquency period more than one year, to and including two years.

(5) One hundred sixty percent for a delinquency period more than two years.

(e) A single penalty assessment for the delinquent payment of the fees specified in Sections 9250.8 and 9250.13 shall be as follows:

(1) Ten dollars ($10) for a delinquency period of 10 days or less.

(2) Fifteen dollars ($15) for a delinquency period of more than 10 days, to and including 30 days.

(3) Thirty dollars ($30) for a delinquency period of more than 30 days, to and including one year.

(4) Fifty dollars ($50) for a delinquency period of more than one year, to and including two years.

(5) One hundred dollars ($100) for a delinquency period of more than two years.

(6) This subdivision applies to the renewal of registration for vehicles with expiration dates on or after December 1, 2008.

(Amended by Stats. 2011, Ch. 21, Sec. 6. (SB 94) Effective May 4, 2011.)

9554.1.
  

The amount of any penalty calculated pursuant to Section 9554 or subdivision (b) of Section 18116 of the Health and Safety Code shall be reduced by the amount of any offset implemented pursuant to Section 10754 of the Revenue and Taxation Code, or any portion of the amount of that offset.

(Added by Stats. 1998, Ch. 322, Sec. 105. Effective August 20, 1998.)

9554.2.
  

Upon the operation of a commercial motor vehicle at a greater gross vehicle weight than had been reported to and registered by the department, a new registration application shall be made to the department. The greater declared gross vehicle weight fee as required in Section 9400.1 and any penalties defined in this code shall be paid to the department.

(Added by Stats. 2000, Ch. 861, Sec. 54. Effective September 29, 2000. Operative December 31, 2001, pursuant to Sec. 67 of Ch. 861.)

9554.5.
  

(a) On and after January 1, 2003, a penalty shall be added on any application for original registration made later than midnight of the date of expiration or on or after the date penalties become due. Penalties shall be computed as provided in Section 9559 and shall be collected with the fee.

(b) The penalty assessment for the delinquent payment of the registration fee specified in Section 9250 shall be as follows:

(1) Thirty dollars ($30) for a delinquency period of one year or less.

(2) Fifty dollars ($50) for a delinquency period of more than one year, to and including two years.

(3) One hundred dollars ($100) for a delinquency period of more than two years.

(c) The penalty assessment for the delinquent payment of the weight fee specified in Section 9400 or 9400.1 and the vehicle license fee as specified in Section 10751 of the Revenue and Taxation Code shall be as follows:

(1) Forty percent of the vehicle license fee, or the combined amount of the vehicle license fee and the weight fee if the vehicle is subject to both fees, for a delinquency period of one year or less.

(2) Eighty percent of the vehicle license fee, or the combined amount of the vehicle license fee and the weight fee if the vehicle is subject to both fees, for a delinquency period of more than one year, to and including two years.

(3) One hundred sixty percent of the vehicle license fee, or the combined amount of the vehicle license fee and the weight fee if the vehicle is subject to both fees, for a delinquency period of more than two years.

(d) A single penalty assessment for the delinquent payment of the fees specified in Sections 9250.8 and 9250.13 shall be as follows:

(1) Thirty dollars ($30) for a delinquency period of one year or less.

(2) Fifty dollars ($50) for a delinquency period of more than one year, to and including two years.

(3) One hundred dollars ($100) for a delinquency period of more than two years.

(4) This subdivision shall apply to applications for an original registration where the date the fee is due is on or after December 1, 2008.

(e) This section shall become operative January 1, 2009.

(Repealed (in Sec. 24) and added by Stats. 2008, Ch. 756, Sec. 25. Effective September 30, 2008. Section operative January 1, 2009, by its own provisions.)

9555.
  

Whenever any trailer coach is in this State without the registration fee having first been paid as required by this code, the fee is delinquent.

(Enacted by Stats. 1959, Ch. 3.)

9556.
  

Whenever any person or organization authorized by the department under Section 4610 receives an application for renewal of registration accompanied by the proper fee and endorses a receipt or validates a registration card or potential registration card in respect to the application for renewal of registration prior to midnight on the date registration expires in any year, the application and payment of fees shall not be deemed delinquent or subject to penalty, except that the person or organization so receiving the application and fees shall transmit the application and fees to the department as promptly as practicable in the immediate course of business.

This section shall become operative on March 8, 1976, unless a later enacted statute, which is chaptered before March 8, 1976, deletes or extends such date.

(Repealed and added by Stats. 1974, Ch. 1330, Sec. 26.)

9557.
  

(a) No penalty shall be imposed for delinquent payment of any fee required to be paid under this code in the event any instrument for effective payment of such fee is placed in the United States mail or in any postal box maintained by the United States Postal Service with sufficient identification in an envelope with postage thereon prepaid and addressed to the Department of Motor Vehicles at Sacramento, or to one of the regularly established branch offices of the department or to any person or organization authorized by the department under Section 4610, prior to the date or time the fee becomes delinquent.

(b) Any person so mailing an instrument for payment of any fee may file with the department a certificate in writing showing compliance with the provisions of this section. The certificate shall be accepted by the department as prima facie evidence of such mailing.

(Amended by Stats. 1975, Ch. 389.)

9558.
  

If a check in payment of a fee or penalty is not paid by the bank on which it is drawn on its first presentation, the person tendering the check remains liable for the payment of the fee, or fee and penalty, as if he had not tendered the check. The department in its discretion may redeposit a check in payment of the fee, or the fee and penalty, not more than once without assessing additional penalties.

(Amended by Stats. 1969, Ch. 214.)

9559.
  

In computing any registration or weight fee or penalty imposed by this code, whether on a proration or otherwise, a fraction of a dollar is disregarded, unless it equals or exceeds fifty cents ($0.50), in which case it is treated as one full dollar ($1). Computation of any penalty shall be made from the fee after the same has been computed as provided in this section.

Any fee or penalty in an amount of forty-nine cents ($0.49) or less shall be deemed to be one dollar ($1).

(Amended by Stats. 1992, Ch. 1241, Sec. 14. Effective January 1, 1993.)

9559.5.
  

When, by reason of the assignment or reassignment of a renewal registration date by the director, the registration year is less than, or more than, 12 months, the fee due for that renewal shall be decreased or increased by one-twelfth of the annual fee for each month of the period less than, or in excess of, 12 months.

(Added by Stats. 2006, Ch. 169, Sec. 4. Effective January 1, 2007.)

9560.
  

(a) The department shall waive all penalties that may be due for late payment of registration renewal fees on a vehicle for any period during which the registered owner is deployed to a location outside of the state.

(b) (1) For the purposes of this section, “deployed” means being ordered to temporary military duty during a period when a Presidential Executive order specifies that the United States is engaged in combat or homeland defense and the registered owner is one of the following:

(A) A member of the armed forces.

(B) A member of the armed forces reserve or the National Guard who has been called to active duty or active service.

(2) “Deployed” does not include either of the following:

(A) Temporary duty for the sole purpose of training or processing.

(B) A permanent change of station.

(c) This section does not apply to a registered owner who applies for registration renewal more than 60 days after termination of his or her deployment.

(Added by Stats. 2004, Ch. 188, Sec. 1. Effective January 1, 2005.)

9561.
  

(a) When a legal owner or his or her agent repossesses a vehicle on which renewal fees are due, the department shall waive any renewal penalties that are due for late payment if the fees are paid within 60 days of taking possession.

(b) Notwithstanding any other provisions of this code, when a repossessed vehicle is sold through a dealer conducting a wholesale motor vehicle auction as provided in subdivision (b) of Section 4456 and Article 5 (commencing with Section 6100) of Chapter 2 of Division 3, any penalties that may be due are waived, if all renewal fees that are due are paid not later than 60 days after the date of sale at the auction.

(Amended by Stats. 1994, Ch. 180, Sec. 10. Effective July 11, 1994.)

9561.5.
  

The department shall waive any penalties that may be due for late payment of registration renewal fees on a vehicle if all of the following criteria are met:

(a) The vehicle is sold through a dealer conducting a wholesale motor vehicle auction as provided in subdivision (b) of Section 4456 and Article 5 (commencing with Section 6100) of Chapter 2 of Division 3.

(b) Immediately prior to the sale the vehicle was registered as a leased vehicle.

(c) Delivery of the vehicle to the dealer conducting the wholesale motor vehicle auction was not later than 25 days after the termination of the lease.

(d) The date of termination of the lease and the date of delivery to the auction is reported on the application for registration, or application for transfer and registration, in a format that is acceptable to the department.

(Added by Stats. 1997, Ch. 311, Sec. 1. Effective January 1, 1998.)

9562.
  

(a) When a transferee or purchaser of a vehicle applies for transfer of registration, as provided in Section 5902, and it is determined by the department that registration penalties accrued prior to the purchase of the vehicle, and that the transferee or purchaser was not cognizant of the nonpayment of the fees for registration for the current or prior registration years, the department may waive the registration penalties upon payment of the fees for registration due.

(b) Other provisions of this code notwithstanding, the director may, at his or her discretion, investigate into the circumstances of any application for registration to ascertain if penalties had accrued through no fault or intent of the owner. If the director determines that the circumstances justify it, he or she may waive any penalties upon payment of the fees for registration then due.

(c) When a transferee or purchaser of a vehicle applies for transfer of registration of a vehicle, and it is determined by the department that fees for registration of the vehicle for any year are unpaid and due, that the fees became due prior to the transfer or purchase of the vehicle by the transferee or purchaser and that the transferee or purchaser was not cognizant of the fact that the fees were unpaid and due, the department may waive the fees and any penalty thereon if the license plate assigned to the vehicle displays a validating device issued by the department and the validating device contains the year number of the registration year for which the transferee or purchaser is requesting a waiver of fees and penalties.

(d) Upon the transfer of a vehicle for which fees for registration and any penalties thereon are unpaid and due, the fees and penalties are, notwithstanding the provisions of Article 6 (commencing with Section 9800) of this chapter, the personal debt of the transferor of the vehicle who did not pay the fees and penalties when they became due or accrued. The fees and penalties may be collected by the department in an appropriate civil action if the department has waived the fees and penalties pursuant to subdivision (c).

(Amended by Stats. 1993, Ch. 223, Sec. 1. Effective January 1, 1994.)

9563.
  

Notwithstanding any other provisions of this code, when a vehicle is rebuilt and restored to operation after it has been reported to be dismantled pursuant to Section 11520, the application shall be deemed to be an application for original registration of a new vehicle for determination of fees.

(Amended by Stats. 1973, Ch. 889.)

9564.
  

(a) A scrap metal processor, as described in paragraph (3) of subdivision (a) of Section 221, who acquires a vehicle of a type subject to registration under this code, and who complies with all the provisions of this section, is not required to submit a certificate of nonoperation in lieu of fees or to pay fees that would otherwise be required if the vehicle were to be currently registered.

(b) A scrap metal processor who acquires a vehicle as provided in subdivision (a) shall submit either of the following to the department before reducing the vehicle to its component materials:

(1) Documentation that the vehicle was acquired pursuant to Section 22669 and disposed of in compliance with Article 2 (commencing with Section 22850) of Chapter 10 of Division 11.

(2) The properly endorsed certificate of title transferring title to the scrap iron processor and any available license plates or registration documents.

(c) A vehicle delivered to a scrap metal processor under subdivision (a) shall not be reconstructed or made operable, unless it is a vehicle which qualifies for either horseless carriage license plates or historical vehicle license plates pursuant to Section 5004, in which case the vehicle may be reconstructed or made operable.

(Amended by Stats. 1999, Ch. 316, Sec. 2. Effective January 1, 2000.)

VEHVehicle Code - VEH4