All trailers must be registered when used on-road. Additionally, if the trailer weighs over 2,500 lbs. (empty weight), it must be titled as well. All trailer coaches (e.g., pop-up camper, travel trailer, fifth wheel camper, etc.) are titled and registered regardless of weight.
If you purchased a used titled trailer, bring the assigned title to a Secretary of State office to have the title transferred into your name. A new trailer plate may be purchased at that time.
If you purchased a new or used trailer weighing less than 2,500 lbs., bring one of the following to a Secretary of State branch office to register it:
a) For a new trailer, the Manufacturer's Certificate of Origin or the retailer's bill of sale.
c) For an assembled or homemade trailer, please review this link as well: Assembled Vehicles.
The empty weight of the trailer will be needed for registration purposes. The empty weight (shipping weight) will show on a Manufacturer's Certificate of Origin, or, in the case of a used trailer, on the seller's Michigan registration.
If the weight is not available from either of these documents, you will need to have the trailer weighed at a certified scale. By law, a trailer may be towed without a license plate, using the most direct route, to a certified scale to have it weighed (MCL 257.216). Certified scales are typically found at truck stops, grain elevators, scrap metal recyclers, and junk yards. Bring the scale weight receipt when you visit a Secretary of State office.
When titling or registering a trailer, 6% use tax is due on the purchase price or retail dollar value, whichever is higher. The 6% use tax is not due if you purchased the trailer from a retailer and paid 6% sales tax with your purchase. Bring your bill of sale with you showing 6% tax was paid to the retailer.
Trailer plates are permanent (non-expiring) and remain valid until ownership transfers. Trailer and Trailer Coach plate fees are:
|Empty Weight||Plate Fee|
|0 - 2,499 lbs.||$75|
|2,500 - 9,999 lbs.||$200|
|10,000 lbs. and over||$300|