In Massachusetts, the state’s Registry of Motor Vehicles (RMV) provides most driver-related services, such as licensing, vehicle registration, and titles. The Massachusetts RMV is what most other states refer to as their DMV. The Massachusetts RMV has done an exceptional job of moving many of its services online. While processing times can still be a bit slow, in most cases you can avoid having to visit an RMV Service Center in person. Below we will take a look at some of the most popular services offered by the Massachusetts RMV.
The Massachusetts RMV offers two types of driving records, both of which can be purchased online: an Unattested Public Driving Record and a True and Attested Public Driving Record. The unattested record costs just $6.00 and is primarily used for personal and informational purposes. When you purchase an unattested record online, you will receive a PDF copy of your driving record that you can print off at home. A True and Attested record, on the other hand, costs $20 and is usually needed for employment, insurance, or legal purposes. While you can buy a True and Attested record online, you cannot print it off from home. Rather, an official copy will be mailed to the address that the RMV has on file for you. Also, third-party databases, such as SearchQuarry.com, can also help you obtain an unofficial copy of your driving record.
The Massachusetts RMV allows you to schedule a road test online so long as it is for a non-commercial passenger vehicle license (Class D license) or for a motorcycle license (Class M). Commercial Driver License (CDL) tests cannot be scheduled online. To schedule a CDL test you will need to call the RMV or visit a RMV Service Center in person. To schedule a Class D or M road test online, you will need your learner’s permit number, Social Security Number, name and date of birth.
Some Massachusetts driver’s license services can be completed online, while others will need to be done in person. If you are renewing a Massachusetts driver’s license then in most routine cases you can simply do so online. Driver’s licenses in Massachusetts must be renewed every five years. If you recently moved to Massachusetts from another state, however, then you will need to visit the RMV in person in order to transfer your out-of-state license to a Massachusetts one. You can find your nearest RMV office here. You will need to bring your out-of-state license do the RMV to complete the transfer. Also, if you are from a state that does not have photo ID driver licenses then you will need to bring separate photo ID. Those with a license from Canada, Mexico, or a U.S. Territory (including Puerto Rico) must also bring a driving record no more than 30 days old.
The Massachusetts RMV has a highly organized and easy to use section of its website dedicated to Forms and Manuals. You will need Adobe Reader to view the forms and print them out from home.
Unlike many other states where payment for traffic tickets is handled by individual counties and municipalities, Massachusetts has conveniently centralized the payment of traffic citations through the RMV. The exception is parking tickets, which must still be paid to the city or town that issued the citation. If you choose to pay your traffic ticket online, make sure that you wait 10 days from the date of the offense before doing so, since it will take some time for the RMV to put your citation number into its system. However, keep in mind that traffic tickets in Massachusetts must be paid within 20 days, so don’t wait too long!
Registration requirements vary depending on whether the vehicle was purchased in Massachusetts from a dealer or non-dealer or outside of Massachusetts (again from a dealer or non-dealer). Almost all new registrations, however, will require visiting the RMV in person. In many cases you will also need to bring proof of insurance, a bill of sale, and a vehicle inspection report. When you register your vehicle at the RMV you will also be required to pay a 6.25% sales tax.
With few exceptions, every motor vehicle and trailer purchased in Massachusetts must be titled within 10 days. While you cannot apply for title online, you don’t need to visit the RMV office in person. Applications for title can be mailed to the RMV’s main office in Boston. You will need to send a Massachusetts RMV-1 Form, a Certificate of Origin or Certificate of Title (depending on whether it is a new or used vehicle purchase), the title fee of $75, and the sales tax of 6.25%. Title applications typically take two to four weeks to process.