How Long Can I Drive a Car with ACT Rego in NSW?


I purchased a car a few days from ACT and drove it back to NSW.

I have the completed transfer papers and I know the next step is to get a blue slip.

The car is still currently registered in ACT and has plates on it. (Checking on the ACT rego check site)

How long can I still drive the car on NSW roads before it's considered unregistered?

I've been searching the internet and have found things saying it's already unregistered, 14 days, 30 days and until the old rego lapses.

Some clarification with a link to a source would be appreciated.

Poll Options

  • 5
    It's already illegal
  • 5
    14 days from the date of sale
  • 2
    30 days from date of sale
  • 9
    Until old rego has been cancelled or expires



    Wonder who'll be the first to ask "Have you called RMS?"…

    • +3 votes

      They weren't too helpful on the phone - they told me to review their website or go into a branch which I'm trying to avoid due to covid.

  • +3 votes

    It won't be deregistered automatically after a fixed period. Be careful if you get into an accident as I don't know if you will be covered by the ACT third party insurance. Just transfer over as soon as practicable.


      I took out an insurance policy on it already.


        Do you mean third party injury which is part of registration? How have you done that if not registered in your name yet?


          No, comprehensive. I think your talking about CTP or liability insurance. Not sure about that one.


            @Blatros: I think it is worth following up asap just for this - if you get in an accident and you're not registered you could be in serious hot water.

            I'm not one to talk though as I bought an act registered vehicle and rode it for about 4 months until the rego ran out (I had been into the rta who told me the fees were going to cancel out any refund I was owed for the rego so I thought screw that I want the 4 months I paid for). I'm glad nothing happened in those 4 months!


            @Blatros: I was talking about CTP, not comprehensive.


    Depends on residency.

    You say you are in Newcastle on your profile here.

    But you say you completed the transfer papers. But did you submit them to the ACT. I guess not. Plus if it still shows as registered then the previous owner may not have done that yet, or it’s being done.

    Soon as the ACT gets notified, you could find the rego is cancelled, because you are outside their territory. Bingo your car isn’t registered.

    So you are relying on the previous owner notifying the transfer. If it is in the same state then the transfer is automatic because you live there, but since it can’t be transferred when they are told it can be cancelled and a refund gets given. Someone generally applies for this, you technically but could be the previous owner if you don’t object. Ask for the refund thats the Ozbargain way. You can call ACT and find out how.

    You like gambling? Is the current situation worth the risk? And while the system won’t flag you as unregistered while driving - No camera recognition issues, if you have an accident then you will just complicate your life and all sorts of insurance issues arise.

  • +2 votes

    have the completed transfer papers

    I am assuming that you have/had an ACT address that you used to transfer the car into your name? How much time do you spend in ACT?

    If that's the case, none of those polls are correct. 3 months if you intend to garage it in NSW if you are the "registered owner" (transfer of ownership completed in ACT). If not, it's 14 days if the transfer of ownership requirements have not been/can't be done yet.

    If you did not/can not transfer it in ACT to your name (ie: not an ACT resident) you have 14 days to transfer it to your name. If you can only do that in NSW, then 14 days is your time frame.

    Edit: And wow, that poll. Ya'll looking to get OP in the shit? Can't wait for OP's next post… "Got booked for unregistered and uninsured because I didn't transfer the rego on my interstate car into my name in NSW 7 months ago… How do I make Oz bargain pay because they said just use it until rego was due…"


      Never had an ACT address. The complete transfer paper was done for proof of purchase only. Poll has me even more confused than before but won't be blaming ozbargain should I get fined.


        So care to explain what you perceive the benefit to you is for not transferring the rego. As you say its NOT transferred, its READY to be transferred.

        As they say. You have to do it, so just do it.


          I purchased it 2 days ago and the mechanic has me booked in for a blueslip on Monday. I need that before I can change it over to a NSW rego. Just wanting to know if I have to catch a bus to work or not.

          • +1 vote

            @Blatros: Ah the details - helps.

            Having booked it in for blue slip, shows your intent, which would be pretty unreasonable to expect you to get into trouble. But keep in mind who you are insured with. Cheapies have to cut costs somewhere and are more likely (although not always) looking for outs. They are more likely to understand the legalities. Maybe call them and ask what they think, thats more the issue than the police.

            Doing something like the dingbat below can leave you very exposed.

            If you are cautious, catch the bus.

            Happy motoring and good luck with your blue slip

      • +2 votes

        Ok. Well, in that case, I would say it falls into the 14 days.

        Any transfer of ownership in ACT needs to be done within 14 days. If you cannot transfer it because you don't live in ACT, then it would need to be transferred out to a NSW registration within that time.

        Or, you know, just run the gauntlet and pray for the best and hope you don't get caught just letting the rego run its course. You could always come back and post about rEvEnUe rAiSiNg if you get caught…


    The cops don't care as long as it doesn't get picked up by ANPR as being unregistered. Keep driving.

    • +1 vote

      Spot on, regarding ANPR, but get pulled over for something else, and have an accident or other offence and it can all go pear shaped.

      And until we know that there is some real benefit to the OP for not doing it, why find out the hard way.

      Next OzB post is … I didn't… help me!


    For NSW you should've arranged a temporary rego just to drive it back. Personally I think it's over the top and you should have some time to do the transfer but you don't. It's essentially unregistered and uninsured currently.

    • +1 vote

      I did read this. But the websites assumed the plates were taken off and handed back to the ACT RTA. Any website links would be helpful.


    Looks like a long wait at Service NSW. If at all worried, wear a facemask, and do it before CV spreads out of Sydney (If you are in Newcastle, and hopefully it doesn't).


      Already in Sydney but not in the eastern suburbs.

  • -1 vote

    Realistically it doesnt actually matter. I drove for 5 years with a car registered in another state so I could save on registration fees. Also have a drivers license from that state which I never transferred over and its never been an issue.

    Of course in niche scenarios like being pulled over a few times or similar you actually can get in trouble if they care but most won't.


      Correct, but OP hasnt said they have these extra things, like ACT license and address so unlike you they havent even a plausible excuse.

    • +3 votes

      Whilst Dingo may have done it for 5 years it doesnt mean its legal. He had a licence from the same State that the car was registered in, & obviously somebody living at the address he had on his licence.

      Whilst carrying ACT plates & being garaged in NSW your car is effectively uninsured.

      Do you hold a NSW drivers licence?
      Is the car garaged in NSW?
      What is the address you used to insure the car, Im guessing NSW?

  • +1 vote

    Legally or realistically?

    If I was the seller, I'd have cancelled it already.


      I don't think they can cancel it without handing back the plates


        Easy, they were stolen.

        They wouldnt have gone with the car. Wonder how many fines the previous owner will get sent if he hasnt submitted the paperwork to transfer and/or cancel.


        ACT the plates don't need to be returned.