Massachusetts temporary tag -- NOT!


#1

Anyone know why Massachusetts does not issue temporary tags?

I am a New Jersey resident about to buy a car in MA (a used car that is not available locally, believe me, I’ve looked), but unlike New Jersey, New York, Maryland, etc., I cannot take the car home after paying for it because of the no temp tag thing. I have to go home with the title, spend (significant) time at DMV to register the car in New Jersey, mail the stuff back to the dealer, and then (lucky for me) the dealer delivers the car to NJ.

But what is the deal with Massachusetts? (And why aren’t dealers storming the MA legislature so that their lives are eased and returns on an interstate sale are increased?)


#2

They use to…why they don’t anymore…my guess is money…they didn’t like the fact that people from NH would go to their state and buy a car without paying a sales tax. I’ve bought a couple of cars in MA years ago that way…You pay the tax on where you register the car…And since NH doesn’t have sales tax… I think it’s only hurting businesses in MA.


#3

No way would I let the dealer deliver it unless it was on a flat bed. Ever seen those people drive the dealer cars? I think I would be strongly tempted to just drive it at night on the back road without plates to get it home. Of course you could borrow plates to put on once you got around the corner. Sometimes you have to bend the rules a little.


#4

Ah, continuing the proud tradition of advocating illegal activity on the Car Talk boards.

“Wrong plates? Well, officer, here’s the thing… uh, registration? Well, not technically…”

The Massachusetts state government and especially the RMV does a lot of stupid things. They’re famous for it.


#5

-devries is correct…Driving an unregistered car is a MINOR issue compared to misuse of a license plate…

I would drop by a N.J. DMV office and see what it would take for THEM to issue you a temporary tag for the car you are buying…The owner could FAX you the necessary paperwork (which is not much for a temporary tag) and you just bring the tag with you when you pick up the car…

I have actually done this. .I purchased a car in Mass and my local DMV office in Colorado mailed me a 60 day temporary Colorado registration. $2.50 In CO. the county clerks are in charge of car registrations, not the State. A FAX of the title and proof of insurance and that was it, all done by FAX and mail…Took 3 days to get the plate…