Section 40-12-262

Effect of provisions relative to registration and display of tags on nonresidents; international registration plan; temporary trip permit; penalties.

(a) The provisions of the foregoing sections relative to registration and display of registration numbers shall not apply to a motor vehicle owned by a nonresident of this state and not used for hire or used for commercial purposes in this state for a period of 30 days from date of entering the state; provided, that the owner thereof shall have complied with the provisions of the law of the foreign country, state, territory, or federal district of his residence relative to the registration of motor vehicles and the display of registration numbers thereon and shall conspicuously display his registration number as required thereby; provided further, that nothing herein shall be construed to permit the use of motor vehicles for hire, or for commercial purposes, by nonresidents without complying with the provisions of this article. The state Department of Revenue is hereby authorized to make reciprocal agreements with other states for an exchange of rights for the operation of motor vehicles that will be considered as a fair exchange of rights and privileges, the said rights and privileges to be in effect as long as both contracting parties recognize the rights of the other. The above reciprocal agreement can be annulled on a notice issued to either party by the other party thereto within 30 days thereafter.

(b) Each vehicle registered pursuant to the provisions of Section 32-6-56 (International Registration Plan) must have a current and valid Alabama license plate of the correct classification and a current and valid cab card reflecting the proper vehicle identification if based in Alabama. If the vehicle is from another member jurisdiction, it must have a current and valid apportioned registration plate and cab card reflecting the proper vehicle identification, proper weight classification as provided in Section 40-12-248, and listing the State of Alabama as a participating member, or be registered as provided in subsection (c) or (d) below.

(c) Persons who drive or operate vehicles of a weight or type as defined in the International Registration Plan and which are based outside Alabama and elect not to secure a full or apportioned registration or registration pursuant to a reciprocal agreement between Alabama and the vehicle's base state, must secure, prior to entry into this state, a temporary trip permit in lieu of full registration or apportioned registration. This temporary trip permit shall be valid for seven days and may be obtained from the state Department of Revenue or an agent designated by the department, in the form and under the rules and regulations prescribed by the Commissioner of Revenue. The fee for each such permit shall be $20, which upon receipt by the Commissioner of Revenue must be promptly deposited into the State Treasury to the credit of the State Road and Bridge Fund.

(d) An owner-operator of a vehicle of the weight or type as defined in the International Registration Plan not operating as a lessor for a registered motor carrier may operate an unladen vehicle or combination of vehicles without the temporary trip permit, providing the owner-operator possesses and presents upon request, a current and valid temporary registration plate or permit from a member jurisdiction.

(e) The cab card or temporary trip permit provided for herein must be present at all times in the vehicle for which it is issued; and must be presented, on demand, for inspection by revenue enforcement officers or other agents or officers of the state Department of Revenue, or other law enforcement officers.

(f) It shall be unlawful for any person to operate on the public roads and highways of this state, an apportionable vehicle or combination of apportionable vehicles based in a jurisdiction that is a party to the International Registration Plan, that is not validly registered as provided in this section. It shall be unlawful for any person to alter a cab card or temporary trip permit; or to possess or offer an altered cab card or temporary trip permit. Anyone violating any of the provisions of this section shall be guilty of a Class C misdemeanor, and upon conviction thereof, shall be punished as provided by law, except that the minimum fine upon conviction shall be $200 or the maximum fine provided for a Class C misdemeanor, whichever is less.

(g) It shall be unlawful for any person to operate on the public roads and highways of this state, a vehicle or combination of vehicles of a weight or type as defined in the International Registration Plan not based in a jurisdiction that is a party to the International Registration Plan, that is not validly registered in Alabama or registered in accordance with a reciprocal agreement between Alabama and its state of registration. Anyone violating any of the provisions of this paragraph shall be guilty of a Class C misdemeanor, and upon conviction thereof, shall be punished as provided by law, except that the minimum fine upon conviction shall be $200 or the maximum fine provided for a Class C misdemeanor, whichever is less.

(Acts 1935, No. 194, p. 256; Acts 1936, Ex. Sess., No. 177, p. 208; Acts 1939, No. 402, p. 527; Code 1940, T. 51, §707; Acts 1987, No. 87-763, p. 1484.)