Chapter 2, Section A:
Who Must Title and Register a Vehicle in New Mexico?

Revised July 12, 2011

General rule

A New Mexico resident who operates a vehicle on the roads and highways of New Mexico must register the vehicle. As described below, certain non-residents must also register their vehicles.

New Mexico Residents (66-3-4 NMSA 1978)

All applications presented to the division shall contain the name, bona fide New Mexico residence address and mailing address of the owner, or, if the owner is a firm, association or corporation, then the name, bona fide New Mexico business address and mailing address of the firm, association or corporation. Persons without a New Mexico residence address may not title and register their vehicles here. (PQU#64rev2)

Non-Residents (66-301 NMSA 1978)

  1. Non-residents, who have accepted permanent employment in New Mexico, must register their vehicles within thirty (30) days. Those who can furnish proof through their employers that their employment will not exceed 180 days need not register their vehicles in New Mexico, provided their vehicles are displaying current registration plates from their state of residence. (If gainfully employed for thirty (30) days or more within a sixty (60) day period the vehicle is subject to registration).
  2. Non-resident military assigned to a New Mexico military installation may operate their vehicles in this state provided they display a current registration plate from their state of residence. Military personnel have the option of maintaining current registration in their home state or registering and titling their vehicle in New Mexico.
  3. Non-resident students engaged in a full-time course of study at an institution of higher learning located within the State of New Mexico may operate their vehicles in this state provided they display current registration plate for their state of residence. The out-of-state student must obtain and display a valid non-resident sticker. Stickers are available at all institutions of higher learning.
  4. Non-residents, who are carrying on business within this state and owning and regularly operating in such business any motor vehicles, trailer, semitrailer, house trailer or pole trailer within the state, shall register each such vehicle and pay required fees.