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Old 01-28-2016, 11:46 AM   #1
Join Date: Nov 2012
Location: Westcliffe, Colorado
Trailer: 21, June 8, 2016, "The Final Frontier"
Posts: 76
woe of registration

For Colorado Escape owners only, I know all states are different. We are running into the problem of the local county wanting to verify the VIN prior to registration. We know we will have the VIN, et al before we leave to pick up "Dog House" 21' in May, but we'd hoped to go directly to camping in BC and Alaska before returning to Colorado. Not so sure how a license-less trailer would fare going from Canada to US, back into Canada, and then into US. Don't really want to find out the hard way.
Any suggestions??

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Old 01-28-2016, 12:23 PM   #2
Join Date: May 2015
Location: about PoC, New York
Trailer: nunya
Posts: 66
We picked up our trailer on Sep 30, 2015, and it is STILL not registered due to the state employees giving us incorrect information. I know you mentioned Colorado, but I want to share my experience just in case it helps you ask more people for different info.

We left Texas to drive up to BC, and wanted to immediately go camping on the California coast. However, the Polk County tax office said we MUST have an inspection by the Texas Auto Theft Task Force, since it was purchased out of the USA. We drove all the way back to El Paso, had the inspection done, and then drove up to mid New Mexico to camp, and submitted our registration paperwork.

They then told us that the Auto Theft Task Force inspection would not do, and we needed a generic safety inspection from a body shop (or similar) before getting our plates. We called no less than FIVE times to make sure what we did first was correct, and they then back-pedaled, telling us we were wrong.

About two weeks ago, we drove over to Amarillo to get a generic safety inspection and sent that in, but we still haven't heard back yet if we will get our plates or not. Fortunately, we're staying in one place right now, so we don't have a pressing need for the plates.

My suggestion is to call as many offices as you can to get all the possible information, and do everything they suggest, even if multiple suggestions seem to overlap. If Colorado does not require a physical inspection, you might be able to "self verify" the VIN. That's one of the forms we filled out, but again it wasn't enough for us.

Best of luck in figuring this out!

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Old 01-28-2016, 01:08 PM   #3
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Iowa Dave's Avatar
Join Date: Aug 2015
Location: Benton County, Iowa
Trailer: 2013 Escape 21 Classic Number 6, pulled by 2018 Toyota Highlander
Posts: 4,207
I would add this. After many experiences where government employees "lost the line" on a query I made, I now end every conversation with "let me get this straight. What is your name, the best number to call you back if I have a problem and who is your direct supervisor". This will mark you as a jerk but it rarely finds your inquiry being rat holed. My take is that government employees are working for the caller and need to do their job. I worked for governments for 33 years and went to work every day with that attitude. Worked for me and needs to work for all the rest of them.
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Old 01-28-2016, 01:09 PM   #4
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Join Date: Mar 2013
Location: Albuquerque, New Mexico
Trailer: 2008 Escape 5.0
Posts: 707
We found that our local AAA office was very helpful in getting us the correct information and identifying the correct people to talk to.
Fran & Dave
2008 Escape 5.0
2011 Frontier Crew Cab Short Bed Pro4x
Albuquerque, New Mexico
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Old 01-28-2016, 01:27 PM   #5
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Join Date: Mar 2014
Location: Olathe, Kansas
Trailer: 2015 21ft Escape "Spirit of the Plains", 2014 GMC Sierra with max tow package
Posts: 1,102
We ought to have a thread with registration horror stories. I would have a large contribution. The trailer being imported from Canada really threw then for a loop. But the shocker was that they only required a VIN inspection if the vehicle had a previous title. The certificate of origin was sufficient here. Loren
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Old 01-28-2016, 01:48 PM   #6
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Join Date: Dec 2014
Location: Bandera, Texas
Trailer: 2015 5.0TA
Posts: 139
I too am from Texas so the information below might, or might not, pertain to New Mexico. However, the point of Fridaynext's blurb above is: go to your local state license plate place and speak with someone who actually does, or has done, international/out of state transactions before. I went to the local office here in Bandera, Texas. One clerk started to bluff me but then decided she didn't really know much. She asked for the assistance of another lady who actually does this frequently. She looked at my papers from ETI, said this is terrific, then proceeded to tell me what else I needed. The ETI papers were 'right on', she said. Additionally, if i wanted hard metal plates, I needed the following: state inspection of my 5.0TA (which I couldn't do until I returned back to Texas after the trip), official weight (go to one of the Pilot or CAT weighing stations and get an official document which will cost you about $12 or so), and the Anti Theft Task Force Inpection document (which necessitated a trip down to San Antonio since not just everyone does this type of inspection - only specific places in Texas which is in large cities. So, with those four things in hand (ETI papers, Anti Theft document, official weight document, and State of Texas Inspection) she gave me the hard metal license plates.
Prior to leaving Texas and going up to ETI for pick-up I went on-line and was able to print out temporary tags. I think they were for 30 days but might have been for 60 - can't remember. Regardless, the paper tags worked fine for recrossing back into Canada after we took possession of the 5.0TA. After all, tags are tags whether they are paper or metal. Since our maiden trip was so long I had to re-up the paper tags once and get another 30/60 temp tag.
When I got back home to Bandera I thought I would wait a couple months to actually go get the metal tags figuring the longer I waited the longer the next 12 month renewal would be. My mistake: I went into the license office after a couple months and got hit with a penalty for waiting longer than 30 after the paper tags expired. Lesson: once you get home, go get your metal tags. As I recall, the penalty was hefty. The longer you wait the higher the penalty.
Hope this helps.
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Old 01-28-2016, 02:20 PM   #7
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Dave Walter's Avatar
Join Date: Apr 2012
Location: Edmonton, Alberta
Trailer: 2013 19' & 2013 15B
Posts: 2,259
Wow, some of you have got to move to Canada. Before leaving to pick up my trailer, I took the paperwork mailed to me from Escape to my local registries office, paid my $110 fee and 5 min later had my plates and was on my way. Was less painful than a visit to the dentist.
2013 19' \ 2013 15B, 2011 Toyota FJ Cruiser

"It is better to remain silent at the risk of being thought a fool, than to talk and remove all doubt of it." - 1907, Maurice Switzer
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Old 01-28-2016, 02:45 PM   #8
Join Date: Nov 2012
Location: Westcliffe, Colorado
Trailer: 21, June 8, 2016, "The Final Frontier"
Posts: 76

The horror stories are just that! Escape tells me folks take their new Escape to Lyden , WA to get it registered. Being Coloradans without a WA state address, this doesn't make sense to me, but I will call and ask. Thinking about taking the Colorado license off our utility trailer and putting that on the Escape! Maybe no one would notice and call the authorities!
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Old 01-28-2016, 02:56 PM   #9
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Join Date: Oct 2013
Location: Phoenix, Arizona
Trailer: 2015 Escape 19 "Seventy Degrees"
Posts: 2,798
As long as you have your papers from ETI and export paperwork with you, really shouldn't need a tag. We had no issues staying out for 7 days and pulling home past countless state troopers with no tag. If you're stopped you just show them the paperwork and that your in-transit home.
Now if you're going to run around for 60 days without going home and registering then it could become a problem.
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Old 01-28-2016, 03:26 PM   #10
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Join Date: Mar 2013
Location: North of Hertel, Wisconsin
Trailer: TBD
Posts: 2,065
We picked up our trailer and immediately went on a 3 week trip.
When we returned to our home state we went to the DMV to license /register our trailer . One of the first questions we were asked at the DMV was "On what date did the trailer enter Wisconsin". I inquired why that was important and was told that the sales tax on the trailer has to be paid within 10 days of the trailer entering the state . If you delay registering /licensing / transferring title beyond the 10 day grace period , you are guilty of tax avoidance . I don't know what the penalty is nor do I want to find out! The $15 trailer license was not the issue ,the $1100 in sales tax was the State's biggest concern.

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