1. Pasco

Pasco Tax Collector: Avoid problems when registering your trailer

Published Nov. 5, 2018

Florida residents purchasing or selling a trailer for the first time may not be familiar with the laws for registering and titling trailers in the Sunshine State. The Pasco Tax Collector's Office has seen many customers come into our offices without the proper documentation to register or title a trailer.

All trailers must be registered with the Department of Highway Safety and Motor Vehicles. The trailer's empty weight determines whether or not it must be titled, as well. Simply put, an empty trailer that weighs 2,000 pounds or more must be titled as well as registered.

There are four types of trailers that our office can assist you with. In all cases, bring in your state-issued photo ID. You will need to provide additional documents that prove the trailer's chain of ownership.

If you have purchased a used trailer, under 2,000 pounds, that is registered in Florida, you will need to provide a bill of sale or the previous owner's registration. The bill of sale must list the Trailer Identification Number or the trailer's license plate number.

If you have purchased a used trailer, under 2,000 pounds, that is not registered in Florida, you will need to provide a bill of sale or an out-of-state title registration signed by the previous owner. A weight slip must be presented unless the weight is listed on the title or registration. If the trailer comes from a state that does not title or register trailers, the bill of sale must include the year, make, Trailer Identification Number and the state where the trailer came from.

If you have bought a new trailer that is not registered in Florida, you must provide the manufacturer's certificate of origin and the bill of sale.

The owner of a homemade trailer must state the year it was constructed and provide a weight slip. If the trailer is under 2,000 pounds, a Trailer Identification Number will be generated by the state's computer system. If the trailer weighs 2,000 or more pounds, a compliance examiner must inspect the trailer and assign it a Trailer Identification Number. To make an appointment for this inspection, call 813-612-7110.

For any trailer, applicable sales tax, registration and title fees must be paid when you complete the transaction.

It may seem like a burdensome process, but there are reasons for it.

It ensures that safe trailers are used on our community's roads. It gives law enforcement the means to track the trailer if it is stolen. And it provides the owner proof that a trailer belongs to him or her and not to someone else.

Mike Fasano, Pasco Tax Collector