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Tuesday, July 27, 2021

Trooper’s tips: Keep up to date on your registration, driver’s licenses and insurance

By Master Trooper Gary Cutler
Colorado State Patrol

Ask a trooper about how to drive safer on the roadway and you better take seat because it could be a while before the trooper finishes. 

I have plenty to say about driving; the hardest part is picking a single topic among the myriad number of laws to talk about. But, if you are interested in more, try out the Colorado State Patrol YouTube channel and watch our podcast on driving in Colorado. We go more in depth on a lot of the topics I hit on each month and have a little fun with it as well.

With that said, let’s hit on being up to date on your driver’s license, vehicle plates and insurance. Last year, the pandemic put a crimp in our ability to continue our lives the way we used to. One of those items that we lost control of is our vehicles. 

When the Department of Motor Vehicles and county buildings shut down around the state, it put the world of driving in chaos. Law enforcement took notice and backed off stopping vehicles for expired registration and driver’s licenses. That was then, and this is now.

There seem to be two elements happening now. One is people that are not sure if they can get their registration and licenses renewed and the other is a group that is trying to manipulate the system. Law enforcement is now enforcing things that have expired.

A lot of renewals can be and are being handled over the Internet. This is allowing drivers to get registered so they can be legal. We know the system is still backed up and sometimes a little slow. If you can’t get it done over the Internet and are required to go in person, it could take a little time to get your appointment. To solve the problem of being ticketed for expired items, make sure you print out your appointment date and time. That shows you are doing you due diligence when it comes to trying to stay within the law.

When it comes to insurance, make sure you have an updated card in your vehicle. It is a law that you need to be able to present proof of insurance to law enforcement when requested. This can be either a printed piece of paper or a digital copy from your insurance company. If you do have it on your phone, please make sure you can access it in a reasonable amount of time. Law enforcement can’t wait forever for you to find the information and if it takes too long, they may write the ticket for no proof of insurance.

So, there’s a few tips on keeping your vehicle information up to date so you won’t be surprised with a ticket.

As always, safe travels.

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