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Guide to the South Dakota DMV

south dakota dmv

If you’re a car owner moving to South Dakota, or purchasing a car in South Dakota, you will need to know the basics of vehicle registration.

New Auto Registration in South Dakota

In South Dakota, vehicles are registered in the county that the owner resides, through the Division of Motor Vehicles (DMV). According to South Dakota law, you will have ninety days after establishing residency to register your vehicle and obtain a South Dakota license.

In order to complete a new registration, you need to:

South Dakota Vehicle Inspections

South Dakota does not require vehicle emissions testing of any kind.

South Dakota Auto Registration Renewal

Your county will send you a renewal notice to remind you that your registration is about to expire. You can renew by phone, mail, online, or in-person at a county treasurer’s office or a self-service terminal. Online, you have a window of ninety days before expiration and thirty days after registration expires. To register,  will need your South Dakota driver’s license, your renewal card, and payment of registration fees, which vary by vehicle weight and year.

South Dakota Vehicle Title Process

If you purchase a vehicle from a dealer in South Dakota, the dealer will complete the title application and submit it to the South Dakota DMV. To complete the auto title transfer yourself, you will need:

  • Your original title
  • An Application for Motor Vehicle Title and Registration (Form MV-608)
  • Your odometer disclosure statement
  • Payment for any applicable fees
    • Standard titling fee: $10.
    • Late application fee: $1 for every 1 week past a 45-day grace period
    • Title transfer fee: $10
    • Lien notations: $10
    • Duplicate title: $10
    • Excise tax*: 4% of the vehicle’s purchase price

Getting Your South Dakota Driver’s License

An South Dakota driver’s license must be obtained within ninety days of establishing residency. At the DMV office, you will need to bring your out-of-state license, the $28 licensing fee, and documents to prove your identity and South Dakota residency. You will be given a routine vision test and have your photo taken. Once complete, you will be issued a South Dakota driver’s license that will be valid for five years.

South Dakota Auto Insurance Requirements

South Dakota requires that all drivers hold liability and uninsured/underinsured motorist coverage. Your insurance must cover the following minimums:

  • $25,000 for bodily injury or death per person
  • $50,000 for total bodily injury or death per accident
  • $25,000 for property damage
  • Uninsured/underinsured motorist coverage