Trailer rego dead end

Submitted: Wednesday, Jan 14, 2009 at 17:50
ThreadID: 65121 Views:5661 Replies:13 FollowUps:9
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Hi all. We have been travelling around for some 10 months or so with a camper trailer and we decided to upgrade, and have one ordered in Melbourne. We live in WA. We are currently in Tassie and were going to go over to Vic to pick it up. The problem is I can't register it in WA without having it inspected there and the only way to do that is to get a permit and drive all the way to WA just to get the thing registered. Another way is to get it shipped to Tassie and get it inspected and registered here. Once again permits and inspection fees. The other way is to be living in Victoria and have a Victorian license, or something that says we are a permanant resident there, or have it registered in a friends name who lives there. We don't know anyone in Victoria that could do this. All rediculous, costly and a big hassle. There must be an easier way. Anyone encountered this problem and know the answer please help. Thanks.
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Reply By: Rangiephil - Wednesday, Jan 14, 2009 at 18:00

Wednesday, Jan 14, 2009 at 18:00
won't the dealer let you use his address and forward the docs on to you? I bet he will!
Regards Philip A
AnswerID: 344301

Reply By: Willem - Wednesday, Jan 14, 2009 at 18:02

Wednesday, Jan 14, 2009 at 18:02

Had exactly the same hassle last year in Queensland. Had to move some gear to South Australia. No, can't even buy it without a Queensland licence. OK.... Yes, can buy it but now need a transport permit through 3 States....yikes! imaging standing in all the queues.

ExplorOz Member Footloose came to the rescue as he is a resident of Queensland and helped us out. We paid for the trailer and Member Footloose registered it in his name. Then we gave him a receipt for purchase of the trailer from him. Once back in South Australia we transferred the ownership. Yes, it cost double in fees but it was a means to an end.

If the seller in Victoria could register the trailer in their name and then sell it to you as a Used Trailer then there are no problems. You can then transfer ownership to your name legally when you get to WA. This idiot regulation only relates to new vehicles.

Maybe a kindly ExplorOz Member will help you out.

AnswerID: 344302

Reply By: Notso - Wednesday, Jan 14, 2009 at 18:03

Wednesday, Jan 14, 2009 at 18:03
Another good reason to get rid of these State Governments and have a single national government that makes all the laws.

It must be a nightmare to own a company in Aus and have to comply with all the different legislation etc.

I know of a lot of people who register their caravans at a Victorian Address to get the lower fees. All you need apparently is a victorian address.
AnswerID: 344303

Follow Up By: Member - Jack - Wednesday, Jan 14, 2009 at 20:14

Wednesday, Jan 14, 2009 at 20:14
"Another good reason to get rid of these State Governments and have a single national government that makes all the laws".

Could not agree more ... the only reason we have States was so that they could get Federation through way back when ...

It could be abolished with a referendum, but would have little chance of getting the okay, unfortunately.

Apologies to Kirk and Jeanette for the thread hijack.

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Follow Up By: Member - Mike DID - Monday, Jan 19, 2009 at 17:00

Monday, Jan 19, 2009 at 17:00
Three Tiers of government are a huge cost and waste of money.
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Reply By: Member - Ian W (NSW) - Wednesday, Jan 14, 2009 at 18:05

Wednesday, Jan 14, 2009 at 18:05
Have you had a talk to your Melbourne manufacturer? We purchased a Camper/Trailer from Victoria which came with a "permit" which allowed us to drag it around and holiday befor taking it back to NSW where we had it registered.

We have recently ordered a caravan from a Vic. manufacturer which again comes with the necessary "permit".

I do confess however that I have no idea as to any time limitations that may be involved. On the last occasion I made a conscious decision not to look at my watch.

AnswerID: 344304

Follow Up By: Kirk and Jeanette - Wednesday, Jan 14, 2009 at 18:56

Wednesday, Jan 14, 2009 at 18:56
The problem here is we are travelling around Aus indefinitel so we don't plan to be back home for ages so that would i presume involve continually renewing the permit.
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Reply By: Member - Fred B (NT) - Wednesday, Jan 14, 2009 at 18:27

Wednesday, Jan 14, 2009 at 18:27
this is a real tough one. The problem is 1) the law is different in each state and territory. 2) you have to deal with "officialdom" in each state you pass through.... including the police. Our camper was manufactured in SA, so we had it shipped to Darwin before rego. We had the same problem when we purchased a trailer in Canberra to carry extra gear back to Darwin.

It is possible to get permits to travel (one direction only - direct route) within each state.... BUT... cross a state line.. you need a new permit.

The easiest way is: Have the seller rego the trailer PRIOR to purchase. They give you the signed "transfer" of ownership documents and you "transfer" ownership when you get home.

The problem with this system is 1) Legally you are supposed to transfer within 14 days, 2) the seller will probably hit you up for the rego, stamp duty etc.., and 3) you still have to pay the stamp duty and charges at home when you transfer ownership. Same if you get a friend to rego in VIC. And of course these vary in each state. It is well worth looking into though as VIC used to be fairly cheap for rego of trailers/campers, don't know if they still are. Again, it all depends on how long you are going to take to get back to WA.

All up, it's probably cheaper to get a permit in Vic, take the ferry back to Tas and rego there. I don't know of anyone who has beat the system yet (except illegally). I sympathize with you - been there done that!
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AnswerID: 344308

Reply By: austastar - Wednesday, Jan 14, 2009 at 19:43

Wednesday, Jan 14, 2009 at 19:43
Some years ago, but may still work.
My father bought a new vehicle in Victoria, had the dealer ring the Tasmanian Transport department and register it with them to his name and Hobart address.
Didn't seem to be a problem, same thing happened in Hobart when we bought a new car, dealers rang (what ever they are now called) and registered it in my name.

New vehicles don't need to be inspected.

AnswerID: 344323

Follow Up By: Simon C - Thursday, Jan 15, 2009 at 09:22

Thursday, Jan 15, 2009 at 09:22
Austastar.....In NSW to register a trailer (NEW) you need to have an inspection certificate to take to the RTA.
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Reply By: DCTriton - Wednesday, Jan 14, 2009 at 20:23

Wednesday, Jan 14, 2009 at 20:23
Where abouts in Melbourne - I'm in Ferntree gully (East), happy to reg it for you to get you on your way...
AnswerID: 344330

Reply By: bgreeni - Wednesday, Jan 14, 2009 at 20:32

Wednesday, Jan 14, 2009 at 20:32
Had the same problem a couple of years ago. I had a boat and trailer stored in NSW while I worked overseas. Unfortunately I let rego expire. Returned to live in WA. Got quotes to transport the boat to WA but they were for more than the boat was worth so decided to drive to NSW to pick up boat and tow back.

WA was OK and would issue permit.

SA told me that if I had WA permit then I could travel across SA.

NSW wanted me to take for some slip, then register in NSW, and "Oh, you must have NSW licence and address"

Decided to take risk and left Sydney early in morning, was over the border in SA that night.

I was happy to do the right thing if possible, but they just made it all too hard. Crazy state laws.
AnswerID: 344331

Reply By: cito - Wednesday, Jan 14, 2009 at 20:59

Wednesday, Jan 14, 2009 at 20:59
We had intended to buy a c/t from a Vic manufacturer who, because we live in TAS, offered to use his address for rego purposes. We decided that would be the way to go but then bought one in WA. That manufacturer also allowed us to use their address. I would be very much surprised if a lot of them don't offer this to buyers.
One benefit is that WA, Vic and SA all have very low or nil stamp duty on c/ts. When we transfer it TAS rego, the c/t is then used and stamp duty is reduced.
The only way you would need to get permits all the way is if you get it unregistered. Use the manufacturer/dealer address if you have no other option.
The biggest problem we faced, once we had actually paid for the thing, was getting insurance for the trip back using our TAS address. Out of all the yellow pages the only one prepared to cover us was CIL. Once we got it home all the companies, including those we rang in Perth were happy to cover it.

AnswerID: 344334

Reply By: Motherhen - Thursday, Jan 15, 2009 at 00:03

Thursday, Jan 15, 2009 at 00:03
Hi Kirk and Jeanette

When we purchased our caravan in Qld second hand a few years ago, the previous owner was given the run-around about what to do - and was told nonsense including "they could take it home without rego, but there won't be any third party insurance".

Eventually she got higher up the pecking order. She was told to get us to use her address as our residential address, but use our home postal address in postal address. That worked.

Inspected and licenced in WA after we got home. Then the fight started, with me in the middle as the two transport departments would not talk to each other about what happened to the Qld lic plates (shredded in WA and recorded as such on the Australia wide database). Qld would did not understand the word 'shredded' and kept demanding i send the plates back.

I really don't know how overseas visitors who purchase instead of hire for their tour of Australia get a vehicle registered in their name.

As suggested, talk to the dealer - they must have encountered this before. If he wants the sale, ask if you can use his address as your residential address, licence in Victoria and leave it that way until you get back to WA.

I sometimes see people towing caravans with WA plates on the tug, and Qld on the caravan. They must have used a Qld address when they got the van and left it that way.

Good luck and i hope you find something that works. Why the transport departments in each state treat each other as foreign enemies, i cannot understand.


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Follow Up By: Geoff (Newcastle, NSW) - Thursday, Jan 15, 2009 at 00:27

Thursday, Jan 15, 2009 at 00:27
"Why the transport departments in each state treat each other as foreign enemies, i cannot understand."

To be honest MH, I think it is a size competition.

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Reply By: Kirk and Jeanette - Thursday, Jan 15, 2009 at 08:17

Thursday, Jan 15, 2009 at 08:17
Thanks heaps for the info everyone. Usually there is an easy answer to most things. In this case not! I will get back to the supplier abd see if I can sort something out.
AnswerID: 344371

Follow Up By: patrolmann - Thursday, Jan 15, 2009 at 15:40

Thursday, Jan 15, 2009 at 15:40
Hi Kirk and Jeanette,
I bought my c/t second hand from NSW. The rego had just expired and they would not let me reg it here in SA and then come get it and bring it home.
I could not get a permit from NSW because i didn't have a NSW Licence. So the old owner had to organise a permit for me tow the van from NSW to SA and it also had to have a roadworthy cert. from NSW to get a permit.
When i arrived to collect the c/t the plates were off it and the old owner said he had to surrender them to get the permit.
I drove from Newcastle to Adelaide with no number plate on the c/t and did not get stopped once by the police.
Had to book it into SA rego for a identity inspection and then it was given the all clear and rego papers handed over.
They want National Road Rules yet we have to deal with this sort of rubbish from each individual state.
FollowupID: 612401

Follow Up By: HappyCamper - Thursday, Jan 15, 2009 at 18:48

Thursday, Jan 15, 2009 at 18:48
G'day Kirk & Jeanette

As has been suggested, the dealer should allow you to use their address as your residential address (has been done 'heaps' of times) and use your home address as your mailing address, this way any mail will still find you. 'If' they won't accept your WA mailing address, then leave it a week or three and notify VicRoads that you have a 'new' mailing WA! They will then add it to your records.

There is 'no' CTP on trailers so those comments are irrelevant (trailers are covered by the tow vehicle).

If this dealer won't allow the use of their address, then tell him 'thanks, but no thanks'...I'm sure that will change his mind in a big hurry. If he's too concerned tell him to phone whoever is redirecting your mail to confirm your story and show him your camping/fuel/etc receipts, you have enough proof you are travelling right there.

I don't recommend getting the trailer registered in someone else's name, this 'can' lead to all kinds of ownership problems, no need to makes things worse than they are at present. I'm also unsure of Stamp Duty rates in WA, but if you registered in someone else's name then you would be liable to stamp duty 'again' to put it in your own names.

Another will be (nudge, nudge, wink, wink) moving to Victoria to live and will get a Vic drivers licence in the next three months, legally you have 3 months to transfer licence and registrations so your WA drivers licence is still acceptable for ID purposes. But...heck you changed your mind and decided to continue travelling for a bit longer so you WA drivers licence is still OK.

The permit that was mentioned only allows you to travel from point A to point B...not do a round Aus trip! A permit issued in one state 'will' allow you to cross borders and continue to your home state. Unfortunately you'll get the runaround because it's easier to tell you a new permit is needed in each state. I don't recommend a permit either, they are meant for short term usage and would end up costing too much anyway.

All this intrastate BS is just that....BS! Hope this helps and just remember this 'has' been done a zillion times in the past, just stand your ground (nicely and while smiling) as they 'can' do it!!

Do NOT even suggest you will drive back to WA for registration 'can' be worked out without going to such drastic measures. LOL

Bronwyn ;-)

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Follow Up By: Kirk and Jeanette - Monday, Jan 19, 2009 at 11:08

Monday, Jan 19, 2009 at 11:08
Thanks Bronwyn. I have managed to talk the manufacturer into registering in there name. They say they are not supposed to do that so I won't mention any names. Also got some feedback from member Nick in Tassie who has spoken to the authorities there and I can use the address of where I am staying to register in Tassie.

I have also written to my local MP for what its worth to explain the situation. I am sure they know about it but if we all jump up and down then just maybe we have a chance of getting something done. Cheers
FollowupID: 613038

Follow Up By: HappyCamper - Monday, Jan 19, 2009 at 15:48

Monday, Jan 19, 2009 at 15:48
Good that it's worked out Jeanette. There's always a way around things like this, it just needs someone to bend a little without breaking any rules! LOL

Good idea about writing to your MP, just have to hope he/she will do something. Over many years I used to raise this very question you posed originally but could never get anywhere. Some day (don't hold our breath) when we get a totally federal system this will be solved, but until then the heirarchy in their ivory towers seem to think everyone works in the city, 9-5!!

Hope you continue having a great trip and that we meet on the track somewhere, someday!
Bronwyn ;-)
FollowupID: 613066

Reply By: Peter McG (Member, Melbourne) - Thursday, Jan 15, 2009 at 09:40

Thursday, Jan 15, 2009 at 09:40

Call VicRoads and check but I think they will allow you to register it in Vic and use your WA address for renewal. Canberra friends have done this for many years. Vic is also cheaper than many other States.

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Reply By: The Landy - Thursday, Jan 15, 2009 at 10:35

Thursday, Jan 15, 2009 at 10:35
Kirk and Jeanette

The other issue to consider here is the insurance implications. You might want to check the insurance provider to make sure they are happy that you are registering a vehicle to an address you don't live at. Many insurers would look at that in the event of a claim and possibly suggest they did not get full disclosure and reject a claim.....

Just a thought!

Good luck
AnswerID: 344394

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