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Old 10-01-2013, 10:38 AM   #1
AlanCT OP
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Bike trade in the works: question on reg.

I need a bit of advice.

Another inmate and I are working out a straight-across trade of our bikes. We live about ten hours apart and intend to meet up in the middle. If all works out and we are happy with what we see in person, we will swap rides and head home.

My question is, should we arrange for temporary tags? The other guy is checking with the DMV about this. My thought was to simply ride home on each other's plates and then mail the plates to each other promptly; would this be a big no-no? I don't see how it would be different from borrowing a vehicle. Any advice on how to handle the red tape would be appreciated, as neither of us have done anything like this before.

Obviously, we would be arranging for binders from our insurance companies too.
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Old 10-01-2013, 10:45 AM   #2
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I would just ride home on eachother's plates and mail them back when done. Just don't get pulled over on the way home and there will be no problems. I think as long as the bikes are both registered and insured it shouldn't be a problem.
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Old 10-01-2013, 10:56 AM   #3
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Originally Posted by Handy View Post
I would just ride home on eachother's plates and mail them back when done. Just don't get pulled over on the way home and there will be no problems. I think as long as the bikes are both registered and insured it shouldn't be a problem.
Have fun!
That was my thinking, but is there a legal problem with this if I do get pulled over? I'm sure people get pulled over in borrowed vehicles from time to time.
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Old 10-01-2013, 11:05 AM   #4
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Cops tend to get suspicious when the name on the insurance and the name on the registration don't match so it might end being a PITA while you wait on the side of the road waiting for the police to verify everything but I am pretty sure it is not illegal.
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Old 10-01-2013, 12:42 PM   #5
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I don't know how CT does it, but here in MI, I can buy a bike and ride it home with no plate as long as I have the signed off title and insurance card for it.
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Old 10-01-2013, 12:46 PM   #6
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Add eachother to your insurance for the day and each sign a "bill of trade" of sorts with each others signatures. If stopped these two docs should help you on your way, extra insurance cant cost more than a few bucks for a day.
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Old 10-01-2013, 02:35 PM   #7
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I would swap tags and hold on to my registration. Add the bike to your own insurance before or at the moment you buy it (although some insurance, at least USAA, may cover you for up to 72 hours of the transaction), and then issue each person a bill of sale documenting the trade. That way you have a registration in your name, a document stating you made a trade, and the title to the vehicle you traded to. 99.9% of LEO's would understand and give you the benefit of the doubt if you had all the documentation, and you weren't acting in a way to suggest something disingenuous.

I once got screwed on a truck because I let the guy drive away with my tags on the truck. I was then responsible for over $2000 in traffic fines because the truck was still registered in my name, with my tags on the truck. This was between CA and NV, and I think both states require you to keep your tags when you sell/trade/dispose of your vehicle. A good atty helped me out and I beat it, but I could have avoided the problem all together.

I'm sure the other guy you are trading with is a great guy, but.... shit happens. I would still want to CYA, and I'm sure he would too.
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Old 10-01-2013, 03:21 PM   #8
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Both CT and PA seem to require a temporary registration; no grace period like MI. It looks like we will need to find a PA DMV office for title transfer and temp tags for me. CT won't give me a transit tag or temp unless I present a title to them first.


But this will happen on a weekend when the DMV is likely to be closed.
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Old 10-01-2013, 03:26 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by aterry1067 View Post
I would swap tags and hold on to my registration. Add the bike to your own insurance before or at the moment you buy it (although some insurance, at least USAA, may cover you for up to 72 hours of the transaction), and then issue each person a bill of sale documenting the trade. That way you have a registration in your name, a document stating you made a trade, and the title to the vehicle you traded to. 99.9% of LEO's would understand and give you the benefit of the doubt if you had all the documentation, and you weren't acting in a way to suggest something disingenuous.

.
Do you mean keep my own old plate and stick it on the new-to-me bike? I assumed that would be a bigger no-no than using the other guy's plate.
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Old 10-01-2013, 06:40 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by AlanCT View Post
Do you mean keep my own old plate and stick it on the new-to-me bike? I assumed that would be a bigger no-no than using the other guy's plate.

I would not put a plate on a bike it is not properly registered to.

What I have done is as you've described having added the new bike to my policy prior to registering it & vice versa NY-Maine.

Bill of sale/trade as well.
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Old 10-01-2013, 06:42 PM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by AlanCT View Post
Do you mean keep my own old plate and stick it on the new-to-me bike? I assumed that would be a bigger no-no than using the other guy's plate.

Yeah, that's what I always do. I think it would be a big problem if you were trying to hide a non-registered bike, but keeping your tags so that you can transfer them to the new bike shouldn't be that big of a deal. I haven't had a problem with this, BUT I haven't been pulled over and had to explain it either. I am by no means a legal expert, nor have I researched anything. Only stating what I have done in the past with no problems, and the one scenario when I DID have a problem with the truck. A temp tag would be the best way to go, but if the DMV isn't open, and you can't get a temp tag, then........... you will have to find an alternative. Probably the most legal thing you could do is haul it there in a truck. But as long as you aren't doing something stupid on your new bike to encourage an LEO to pull you over, then you probably wouldn't have any problems to begin with. Just my $0.02; take it for what it's worth.
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Old 10-02-2013, 04:06 AM   #12
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Riding home on each others tags is perfectly legal, or if you don't trust the other person to promptly mail back your plate ,then add the bike to your insurance and ride it home on your old plate. As long as you have the bill of sale and insurance most cops wouldn't bother you, and if you get that one asshole then the registration ticket is cheap and no points.
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Old 10-02-2013, 04:29 AM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Typhon View Post
Riding home on each others tags is perfectly legal, or if you don't trust the other person to promptly mail back your plate ,then add the bike to your insurance and ride it home on your old plate. As long as you have the bill of sale and insurance most cops wouldn't bother you, and if you get that one asshole then the registration ticket is cheap and no points.

This is my feeling too. I'm fine with using each other's tags for the day, but I don't know how he feels. I'm okay with risking a cheap ticket, but I would not want to have the bike towed for improper registration and then be stranded somewhere. This happened to me last year in CT with my car when the reg was invalid due to a forgotten emissions test.

I am probably fretting about it too much. I should just insure it, get the title, and ride...
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Old 10-02-2013, 05:09 AM   #14
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In PA tags are done at a Notary, not the DMV. They're usually open on weekends and evenings.
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Old 10-02-2013, 06:21 AM   #15
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Don't overthink it. Ride home on each others plates. Start your ins. on the "new" bike on the day of trade. Have a bill of sale and title to "new" bike on you. Mail plates back later - or don't bother if they are nearing expired date - the refund from DMV won't be worth the trip. Have fun.
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