Can You Register An ATV in PA Without A Title?

Registering An ATV in Pennsylvania Without A Title

Many people sometimes buy an atv without a title for its low price and good condition. The ATVs which have titles have a much greater price not only in the state of Pennsylvania but also in other states of the United States as well. Atvs are very popular in many countries like the United Kingdom, United States, Australia, New Zealand and many other countries too.

So reselling all-terrain vehicles is also much common in all off-road riding regions. As in any other industry, some people try to cheat people in the atv reselling business. Many times this had occurred that criminals have stolen atvs and sold them at a low price from the market value in third-party websites. When the deal happens they make excuses that they have lost the title documentations or getting a title is the easiest process in the world and you can get it immediately after buying the atv from them.

So when you are buying an atv in Pennsylvania be very cautious about the seller and verify the ID of the owner. When any atv is registered a registration plate or sticker is issued by the state of Pennsylvania. All of these registration plates will have an expiration date which would need to be renewed at the ideal time.

This expiration sticker would come attached to the plate for all general registrations of ATVs. DCNR strictly advises keeping the plate always clear and distinctly visible. When you buy your vehicle at a registered dealer then you will be given a temporary sticker of registration for forty-five days. When buying a new atv other than a second-hand one then you would have much less trouble and paperwork struggles. The registered handles the registration and title acquisition on their own.

A sample of the selling bill of an atv in Pennsylvania
A sample of the selling bill of an atv in Pennsylvania



Types of registration in Pennsylvania


General registration and limited registration

For getting a general registration permit in Pennsylvania you will just need to spend twenty dollars when it comes to expenses. The registration remains valid for two whole years after which you would need to renew the license. This permit is necessary for riding in different trails and terrains or anywhere where the land isn’t your own property.

The DCNR of Pennsylvania also provides a mini registration certificate that you can easily keep in your wallet and carry around. Besides this, the main registration gets issued much quickly along with the sticker of expiry.

Limited registration gives you a license to operate the atv on any property or land owned by you or the atv owner. For this kind of registration, not even a penny is required. The registration even remains valid perpetually and doesn’t expire. If you own huge lawns and have a great number of land properties then you might consider this kind of limited registration otherwise it will be not very suitable for any atv owner.

Some people use their utility atvs only for agriculture and other load-carrying purposes. This kind of registration suits their purpose. In this type of registration also a plate and card are provided by the Pennsylvania DCNR.

Two people riding an easy trail in Pennsylvania.
Two people riding an easy trail in Pennsylvania.


Know about atv titles in Pennsylvania

Every atv present in Pennsylvania should have a title that the DCNR officially issues to the all-terrain vehicle. The title obtaining process does require some money which is about twenty-two dollars only.

When you buy from a registered dealer then the dealer takes care of the title of your atv but when you buy an atv privately then you will need to go through a different process for obtaining a title. But there are some exceptions present for atvs that do not require a title. These exception details are as follows:

  • For atvs that are owned by the local government, state government or even the federal off-road vehicles do not require a title.
  • If the atv is dedicatedly used for business operations, agricultural purposes then a title would not be necessary for that vehicle.
  • Registered dealers who use some atvs for business purposes do not require a title for these all-terrain vehicles.
  • If the atv is registered in some other state other than Pennsylvania which honours the Pennsylvania registration is valid in the state.

Getting a new title for your ATV

When you will be buying your atv privately for getting a title from DCNR you will need to provide various documents and forms. The essential documents are as follows:

  • Legal proof of VIN or vehicle identification number.
  • Application completed for getting a title for atv.
  • Any proof of tax payment for the atv.
  • Documents of purchase.


The form for obtaining title and registering it can be easily obtained from forest and state park offices, atv dealers and also the DCNR’s atv registration office. For vehicle reselling or transferring title first complete the assignment on the certificate backside and get the notarization. The latter owner then needs to apply for getting the title and registration. You can get the registration of the atv and then obtain the title but both are necessary to operate your vehicle anywhere in Pennsylvania.

If you are the new owner, always check if the plate of the vehicle is removed or not. The previous owner can also request the addition of the remaining months to your present registration. Failing of registration or not getting registration is a huge risk which you shouldn’t be taking. The violations of the first category cost somewhere between fifty to two hundred dollars. The second class or violations might cost up to three hundred dollars which is a huge price to pay. If there is no registration at all or no liability insurance makes the fine double which is a huge price on the addition of three hundred dollars more.


You can get a registration in Pennsylvania for your all-terrain vehicle with the proper documentation and the process is not very complicated. If you have the correct documents and the forms are properly filled then you don’t have much to worry about in getting the new atv registration. Always verify the seller and the atv owner when buying an atv privately. If you buy a stolen atv then you will not only lose the atv but a lot more will be at stake.

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