Received a Motor Vehicle renewal bill, but the vehicle has been sold, totaled or junked

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If you recently received a renewal tax bill for a vehicle that has been sold, totaled, junked, or ownership has been transferred to a different party, the account can be closed once the license plate has been turned in to the South Carolina Department of Motor Vehicles (DMV). Plate returns can be done either in person with their office, the plate can be mailed in, or it can be reported “turned in” through their online website. Plate return information can be found here: License Plate Return

If the plate is mailed in or turned in in person, you should receive a Form 5051. If the plate is reported “turned in” online, you should reach a confirmation page. Once the license plate has been successfully inactivated, please forward our office documents reflecting the change of ownership (such as a bill of sale, dealership trade-in paperwork, the front and back of the signed-over title, a total loss statement from the insurance company, etc.), and we can work on having your vehicle account inactivated. Documents can be submitted through the request ticket form linked below.

For any questions or issues regarding license plate returns, DMV can be reached at either 803-896-5000 (Columbia), 843-379-8822 (Beaufort) or 843-815-6981 (Bluffton).

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