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Vehicle Registration - Texas from Cali


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Question: Out truck is due for registration in California and wondered if it would make sense to go ahead and register it while we are here in Texas now? We are FT as if January.
Its $133 in Cali and would be about 154$ here I figure (with the first time fee).
What red tape would I be looking at? Have to get DL too I suppose.

Thanks in advance.

-Kim

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Do you have a Texas address to use for the registration? That is the first step. Then there is the risk involved since CA has a program to encourage citizens to report people who register vehicles in another state while living in CA. I don't know what the penalties are but am sure that there are some so you might want to check on that before you change your registration. If you could leave it stored here in TX until January when you leave CA that would clearly be a financial advantage, but if you take them back to CA and park theme for the next 9 months there is a good possibility that you will get caught. That would mean paying the CA registration on top of what you paid in TX and possible fines as well. While you might be able to get away with doing that, I don't think that I would do so.

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You may want to read this article about leaving California. It's not as easy as it sometimes sounds.

http://www.avvo.com/legal-guides/ugc/trying-to-leave-california-maybe-not-an-overview-of-california-residency-rules

We're going to be leaving soon and we're taking the steps to ensure we don't get caught up in the web.

BnB

 

We also are leaving soon and taking every precaution to make certain we are not caught in the California trap. Trish retires December 31, but we are not leaving until January 31 just so we can file a partial year return. Then we're leaving the state and heading for SD to make a very clean break, and have no plans of returning, even for a visit, for at least 2 years. We'll be keeping very detailed records of where we spend each night and how much we spend so that there can be no question of what our intentions are.

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Be very careful. I have been going around and around with the California FTB for quite some time now. I have an employee who resides in California. We are a internet based company that sells a service and not a product. They can not wrap their head around how I can have a employee who lives in the state but the company does not have a physical presence/attachment in the state.

 

Bottom line is you are guilty until proven innocent. Even when you can prove your innocence they may still say you are guilty if they do not fully comprehend the circumstances. They will place liens on your assets in the state if you do not confess your sins to them in a time frame they find reasonable or to their satisfaction. It got to this point between the state and myself. They were very confused when I was threatened with a lean and said go for it. My only asset in the state was my employees laptop. It was due for replacement/recycling anyways. She really got confused when I offered to ship some old servers taken out of service to them if it would make them feel better. I said I bet it would be cheaper to give to them then to recycle them. They were not amused but if finally got my point across and they were finally willing to accept reality once their edge was taken away.

 

Good luck but make sure your i's are dotted and your t's crossed.

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When did California leave the union? Sorry being a foreigner I find it hard to get my head around this variation between countries. Oooops I mean states.

 

Do state laws override federal laws and rights?

In general, federal laws hold priority over state laws, but not in every case. To understand the US system you must remember that the country was founded as a union between independent nation/states. The US civil war removed the right that states had to choose to leave the union, but they still retained a lot of individual power. Over the years that has slowly eroded as more things seem to have become interstate and so be ruled by federal laws with apply when commerce or activities take place between or inside of more than one state. But there is also another kicker in that over the years the federal government as shared larger and larger amounts of money with the states so that has allowed the federal government to use the withholding of those funds as a hammer to force states to do what the congress wants them to by using that threat.

 

Taxes and fees vary widely from the highest cost state to the lowest. In general, the states with larger populations tend to have more services and aid programs and so also higher taxes and fees. Also, states that have a very large mineral industry tend to have lower taxes due to the income derived from taxes on the extraction of those resources. Alaska alone stands as the top example of that since they pay the citizens a per-capita amount just for being a citizen there because the income from that source is high and the population low.

 

In general, state laws hold sway over all issues that are completely within the boundaries of that state and federal rules apply beyond that point.

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You may want to read this article about leaving California. It's not as easy as it sometimes sounds.

http://www.avvo.com/legal-guides/ugc/trying-to-leave-california-maybe-not-an-overview-of-california-residency-rules

We're going to be leaving soon and we're taking the steps to ensure we don't get caught up in the web.

BnB

 

 

 

Good article thanks for posting. The numbered list is a good reference for any state:

 

  1. The amount of time you spend in California versus the amount of time you spend outside of California.
  2. The state where your spouse and children are located
  3. the state where your principle residence is located
  4. The state that issued your driver's license
  5. The state where your vehicles are registered
  6. The state where you maintain your professional licenses
  7. The state where you are registered to vote
  8. The location of the banks where you maintain accounts
  9. The origination point of your financial transactions
  10. The location of your medical professional and other healthcare providers, accountants and attorneys
  11. The location of your social ties, such as your place of worship, professional associations, social clubs and country clubs where you are a members.
  12. Location of your real property and investments
  13. Permanence of your work assignments in California.
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Am I not correct that they can have the vehicles registered and even titled in Texas but then could have a serious issue taking them back into California. I think the same holds true for TX residents registering vehicles in another state. S. Dakota too. It sounds to me like the safest way to do it now is play it safe until you can sever all ties to California and only go back as a tourist that is a full resident of another state.

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I recall some paperwork we had to fill out about not returning to CA for a time after teh purchase when we were SD residents but bought a trailer in CA and we had to take delivery in NV or pay CA sales tax.

 

Good hand written records of your travels are a good idea, something on your computer that could have been typed in anytime isn't so good. Keeping fuel receipts and/or camping ones is another option.

 

Doing everything right and wasting a bit of effort is far cheaper than skipping something that lets the tax man think he has a chance of getting something from you. Once they have invested the effort to try to collect from you they have incentive to continue while all you have is the expense of defending yourself.

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