(1) The department, county auditor or other agent, or subagent appointed by the director shall assign a new registration year to a vehicle if:
(a) The registered ownership of the vehicle is being transferred, except as provided in subsection (4) of this section. The renewed vehicle registration is valid for a full twelve-month period unless: (i) The vehicle changes ownership during the twelve-month period, in which case the registration expires; or (ii) a specific expiration date is required by law, rule, or program; or
(b) The Washington vehicle registration has expired and the registered owner:
(i) Is a member of the United States armed forces;
(ii) Was stationed outside of Washington under military orders during the prior vehicle registration year; and
(iii) Provides the department a copy of the military orders.
(2) Each registration year may be divided into twelve registration months. Each registration month begins at 12:01 a.m. on a day of the month assigned by the department and ends at 12:00 a.m. on the same day the following month.
(3) A registration period extends through the end of the next business day when the final day of a registration year or month falls on a Saturday, Sunday, or legal holiday.
(4) A vehicle registration does not expire when a change in vehicle ownership is the result of one or more of the following circumstances:
(a) When adding a lien holder to the certificate of title or removing a lien holder from the certificate of title;
(b) When a vehicle is transferred from one spouse or registered domestic partner to another;
(c) When removing a deceased spouse or registered domestic partner from the certificate of title;
(d) When a vehicle is transferred by gift or inheritance to one or more members of the registered owner's immediate family;
(e) When a vehicle is transferred into or out of a trust in which the registered owner or one or more immediate family members of the registered owner is the beneficiary;
(f) When a leaseholder buys out the leased vehicle; or
(g) When a person changes his or her name.
[2014 c 80 § 2; 2010 c 161 § 402; 2009 c 159 § 1; 1992 c 222 § 1; 1983 c 27 § 1; 1981 c 214 § 1; 1975 1st ex.s. c 118 § 1. Formerly RCW 46.16.006
Application—2014 c 80:
See note following RCW 46.16A.200
Effective date—Intent—Legislation to reconcile chapter 161, Laws of 2010 and other amendments made during the 2010 legislative session—2010 c 161:
See notes following RCW 46.04.013
Effective date—1975 1st ex.s. c 118: "This 1975 amendatory act shall take effect on January 1, 1977: PROVIDED, That the director of the department of motor vehicles may, prior to such effective date, undertake and perform duties and conduct activities necessary for the timely implementation of this 1975 amendatory act on such date." [1975 1st ex.s. c 118 § 19.]
Severability—1975 1st ex.s. c 118: "If any provision of this 1975 amendatory act is declared unconstitutional, or the applicability thereof to any person or circumstances is held invalid, the constitutionality of the remainder of this 1975 amendatory act and the applicability thereof to persons and circumstances shall not be affected thereby." [1975 1st ex.s. c 118 § 18.]