No Plates or Temp Tag in Colorado W/O New Trailer in CO - Escape Trailer Owners Community

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Old 06-27-2018, 07:55 PM   #1
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No Plates or Temp Tag in Colorado W/O New Trailer in CO

I spent 1.5 hours in the Cortez Colorado (Montezuma County) Department of Motor Vehicles Office today and left without any answers. We have a July 9 orientation date for a new 5.0 and 30 days of subsequent campground reservations in BC, AB, MT and WY.

Even though this office gave a plate to the Cortez-based owners of a 2015 21' we looked at before buying ours, they insisted we could not get registration and permanent plates without 1.) a Colorado VIN inspection form, and without 2.) having made full payment (98.5% is not enough) and 3.) without taking possession of the trailer.

They also stated that no temp tag could be issued until we have the trailer, "statute prevents issuance until you have it".

If we cannot get any kind of tag, we will just drive around without one. Still I hate to give up too easily. Any recent and relevant suggestions on how different Colorado DMV offices interpreted the rules to issue a tag before getting the trailer? Thanks.
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Old 06-27-2018, 08:27 PM   #2
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Most states require actual physical possession or inspection before plate issuance. Since you may already own a trailer with plates, you will probably transfer them to the new Escape. Other member have drive home without plates, without incident. I'm taking my old plates to put on the new Escape and once back in home state just transfer them.
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Old 06-27-2018, 08:52 PM   #3
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Another option you may look into is obtaining a Temp Tag in Washington State, since Escape deliveres the trailer in that state. So basically you are purchasing the trailer in Washington. I live in Colorado, bought my trailer from a couple who live in Washington, who had traveled to Arizona for the winter. They did not want to pull their trailer back home to Washington so they sold it Arizona. (They were purchasing a new 21) Anyway, I went down to Arizona purchased my trailer from them, then went to the Arizona DMV with my title and they issued me a Arizona 45 day temporary permit.
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Old 06-27-2018, 11:23 PM   #4
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Another option you may look into is obtaining a Temp Tag in Washington State,
I agree. I've used Washington temporary permits without any problems. To me, it's a lot better than nothing.

My only concern is that what I'm pulling is covered by insurance.

Ron
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Old 06-28-2018, 12:12 AM   #5
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So, based on your experience, a non-Washington-state resident can get a temp tag in WA after they pick up the trailer?
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Old 06-28-2018, 01:49 AM   #6
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I've gotten a temporary permit before I even picked up what I was towing.

To clarify, it probably isn't completely legal or valid to use it in other states but, compared to towing without anything, preferable to have at least some indication of making an effort to be legal.

Ron
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Old 06-28-2018, 01:50 AM   #7
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Our experience in Boulder County in 2016: we obtained a temporary tag before going up to BC to pick up our trailer. I believe (but am not certain) that we had fully paid for the trailer by that point, and showed up at the DMV with the final paperwork packet from Escape and paid the relevant sales tax. We still needed to go back after returning to CO for a VIN inspection in order to get the permanent plate. They aren’t supposed to issue that until after the VIN inspection.

At least one other Boulder County owner had a similar experience as us (temp plate before pickup), but I believe this has not been consistent in other Colorado counties (i.e., at least one or two other owners in Colorado ran into similar difficulties as you).

Frankly, I wouldn’t worry about it too much if your county is being stubborn or even wrong. From my research at the time I understood that technically we would be ok without any kind of tag, provided we had the purchase paperwork from Escape.

I never understood the point of getting a WA temporary permit, especially if you won’t be spending much time there.
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Old 06-28-2018, 08:43 AM   #8
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Same experience for us at the downtown Denver office (would not issue temp tag).
We chose to buy the temp tag in WA on our way to last year's rally in Osoyoos. We didn't put it on until we left the rally on Sunday for our trip home.
Posting this as a data point to help you make your decision as I don't wish to debate the WA temp tag choice.

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Old 06-28-2018, 09:10 AM   #9
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Why would any state issue plates for a trailer that you don’t own , haven’t paid for , that’s not in your possession , that you don’t have the VIN # ,or a bill of sale , is still titled to ETI , and is currently residing in a foreign country ?
It may solve one problem but create thousands of others
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Old 06-28-2018, 09:50 AM   #10
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I do have a bill of sale and multiple original signed documents from Escape (MSO, export forms, Bill of Sale) certifying under penalty of perjury what the VIN # is. Colorado requires their own State VIN inspection form, which must be completed in Colorado.
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Old 06-28-2018, 10:22 AM   #11
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The Washington state is a paper 3 day permit to transport a trailer through their state, nothing else. You do not need it and it is a money machine for the state, nothing else. It costs something like $15 for the paper plate.
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Old 06-29-2018, 11:52 AM   #12
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Update: Most of the time I spent in the County DMV Office was at the counter while they were on hold with CO State DMV. The State never answered, so the County said they would call the State again the next morning and see if the State had a resolution.

The County Office called me back the next day and said the State told them there was an exemption allowing the issuance of of 30 day temp tag for vehicles coming in to CO internationally. My County's DMV indicated that they had checked with Washington State and they concurred with my assertion that WA would not issue me a temp tag that would be of any utility. They sold us a 30 day CO tag for $7, but the 30 day period had to start when we picked it up (June 28), could not begin when we pick up the trailer 10+ days later.

The County DMV cautioned me that I might not be able to take the trailer into Canada with a temp tag, based purely on what another customer told them. This is at odds with previous experience I read about in this forum, indicating that the border officers do not care if there are any State/Province plates at all.
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Old 06-29-2018, 01:24 PM   #13
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The County DMV cautioned me that I might not be able to take the trailer into Canada with a temp tag, based purely on what another customer told them. This is at odds with previous experience I read about in this forum, indicating that the border officers do not care if there are any State/Province plates at all.
Both sides of the border don't want folks dragging a trailer into the country without importing it legally. Personally I wouldn't, and haven't ever crossed with a vehicle that didn't have some paperwork. That's why I use a Washington state temporary permit. On the theory that something is much better than nothing.

I've been asked several times if I know the trailer license number. It's probably just a way of judging if further inquires are necessary. I have my trailer license number written of masking tape on my dash.

Ron
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Old 06-29-2018, 01:33 PM   #14
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Both sides of the border don't want folks dragging a trailer into the country without importing it legally. Personally I wouldn't, and haven't ever crossed with a vehicle that didn't have some paperwork. That's why I use a Washington state temporary permit. On the theory that something is much better than nothing.

I've been asked several times if I know the trailer license number. It's probably just a way of judging if further inquires are necessary. I have my trailer license number written of masking tape on my dash.

Ron
Hi: Ron in BC... When you pull up to the "Tin hut" the trailer doesn't usually clear the camera so the Officer either has to ask, or get off his "Ascend" and look. I always hand registrations for both truck and trailer along with the passports. Alf
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Old 06-29-2018, 03:21 PM   #15
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The vast majority of the time the officer does neither. I show my Nexus card and I'm gone. But the occasional time when they do ask I like to have the answer ready. I've always thought that answering "no" to knowing the trailer license number might be followed with "do you really own the trailer" and other questions.

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Old 06-29-2018, 06:23 PM   #16
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I went to get a temporary tag for a motorcycle I was buying in NJ, I was living in SC at the time. I made the mistake of telling them I was going to New Jersey to pick it up. They said tag was no good so they wouldn’t give me one. Another visit to another office without the discussion of NJ and I had the tag.

Really a bill of sale is usually enough. I bought a truck in TN and drove it home with no tag. No problem.
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Old 06-29-2018, 07:03 PM   #17
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Hi: Ron in BC... When you pull up to the "Tin hut" the trailer doesn't usually clear the camera so the Officer either has to ask, or get off his "Ascend" and look. I always hand registrations for both truck and trailer along with the passports. Alf
escape artist N.S. of Lake Erie
Hi Alf: The officer on Tuesday asked me my truck plate but not trailer on the way back home. Now one time, and think I've told this before we were heading south for a good part of the winter. Crossing into the US the officer asked me to pull ahead so she could read the plate, I did so, but she could not see it, so finally asked me to get out and tell her. Well I walked to back of trailer and NO PLATE
We figured someone broke off the plastic holder part of left tailight with the plate so we had to return to Canada and check around home to no avail and drive north to next town to get a new plate before going back to the US. Good that we live so close to the border
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