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  #1  
Old 01-09-2006, 10:24 AM
batsto batsto is offline
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getting a car inspected after its due date

I have a small problem....my car was out of commission for several weeks, because it had engine trouble I could not afford to fix. During that time period, the due date for inspection came and went. I finally go it fixed, but now I can't legally drive the vehicle, even to the inspection station.
While I'm willing to risk that short drive, what happens if, for some reason, I fail inspection? You are ordinarily (in NJ) given 45 days to get it fixed, during which time it is OK to drive with the 'rejected' sticker. Will they give me a hard time about leaving the inspection site because my vehicle is now illegal? Do I not get the 45 days to get it fixed?

(This is in NJ where we have mandatory inspection, provided free of charge by the state---I'm aware I could go to a private inspection facility, but I'd rather not pay for something I can get for free. )


Just curious if anyone has ever been in this situation and knows what the rules are.
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  #2  
Old 01-09-2006, 10:35 AM
bordelond bordelond is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by batsto
Just curious if anyone has ever been in this situation and knows what the rules are.
Speaking only for Lousiana and Mississippi:

-- I was caught with expired inspection sticker (aka "brake tag") in Mississippi. No ticket was written. I was told to rectify the situation within 60 days.

-- I got a ticket once in Lousiana for an expired brake tag (what can I say? I'm a flake ). It's around a $50-100 fine (can't remember the exact amount, as this ticket was piggybacked upon another one).

To me ... you're situation is not so bad. You say you "can't legally drive the vehicle" as if you expect to be in huge legal trouble if caught. Ask around locally for New Jersey-specific info, but down here, it's a really, really minimal thing. Much less trouble than speeding, for comparison ... maybe on par with an expensive parking ticket.

IANAL ... and do get info specific for your state.
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  #3  
Old 01-09-2006, 10:43 AM
batsto batsto is offline
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I'm not really concerned about driving the vehicle illegally a short distance to the inspection station. I'm more curious about the inspection station, and whether or not they allow a clearly illegal vehicle to leave. Ordinarily the vehicle isn't illegal if it fails, since you have 45 days or 60 or whatever to fix it. But in my case, if I fail, I'm wondering if my vehicle will still be illegal to drive, since it is so far past its inspection date (it should have been done in September).
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Old 01-09-2006, 10:49 AM
bordelond bordelond is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by batsto
I'm not really concerned about driving the vehicle illegally a short distance to the inspection station. I'm more curious about the inspection station, and whether or not they allow a clearly illegal vehicle to leave.
In both Lousiana and Mississippi, the inspection stations (always a gas station, mechanic's shop, or something like that) have absolutely no enforcement power. They can't stop an tagless car from leaving even if they wanted to.

As for state-run inspection stations in New Jersey ... I can't say. It would be quite surprising to me if they'd stop you from leaving, but I am totally ignorant to what goes on up there. A few well-placed phone calls should get you the info you seek.
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  #5  
Old 01-09-2006, 10:50 AM
CookingWithGas CookingWithGas is offline
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This should be easily answered with a call to your local DMV. Don't worry, if you tell them you have an uninspected vehicle they are not going to come and arrest you. They will tell you exactly what to do.
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  #6  
Old 01-09-2006, 10:57 AM
CookingWithGas CookingWithGas is offline
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You can probably try the number below. I didn't see anything on the site about what happens if you miss your deadline.

http://www.state.nj.us/mvc/cleanair/appointment.html

Quote:
Making an Appointment to have Your Vehicle Inspected

The following seven stations perform inspections by appointment only:

Bridgeton Salem
Cape May Washington (Warren County)
Montclair Westfield
Ridgewood

Appointments can be made by using an online scheduling feature or by calling 888.NJMOTOR (in-state) or 609.895.6886 (from out of state).
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  #7  
Old 01-09-2006, 10:59 AM
batsto batsto is offline
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I thought of calling the DMV (or whatever-- NJ changed the name of that department a few years ago, to I-don't-remember-what). But my experience with dealing with them is that they give the 'official' answer as regards what is supposed to happen, while the reality of how lenient the people at the station itself are can be very different.

The station must have the ability to stop some cars from leaving, right? If I drive in with flames coming out my engine, or the brakes stop working entirely, would they still let you drive off?
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  #8  
Old 01-09-2006, 10:59 AM
UncleRojelio UncleRojelio is offline
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Speaking from Texas, I've driven vehicles for up to two years out of inspection. My own little act of civil disobedience. During the time my vehicles ( yes, plural) are out of inspection I take them in and out of repair shops. ( You might want to point out the lack of inspection to the repairman if there is going to be a test drive involved, they tend to get a little upset about getting pulled over). I only get vehicles inspected when and if I get a ticket. After the inspection and mailing of proof, the ticket is dropped.

Of course, Your Mileage May Vary -- literally.
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  #9  
Old 01-09-2006, 11:09 AM
Enola Straight Enola Straight is offline
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Same thing happened to me.

(I live in NJ, too)

With stickers 5 months out of date, I simply drove to the station, got inspected, and was checked out ok.

No fuss, no muss, no ratting out to the secret police or nothing.
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  #10  
Old 01-09-2006, 11:28 AM
CBCD CBCD is offline
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I got my car inspected in NJ this November, when it should have been inspected in September. The people at the DMV do not care about the due date on your inspection sticker. My car passed inspection, as I expected it to. They slapped on another 'Sept' sticker for the next reinspection date.

I don't know about how they handle setting the date if your car fails. I do know that the folks at the DMV have never said a thing to me about bringing in my car late for inspection, which I have done (cough, cough) one or two times before.
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  #11  
Old 01-09-2006, 12:25 PM
batsto batsto is offline
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I spoke with someone at the Motor Vehicle Commission (which is what the DMV calls itself here in NJ now). She said pretty much the same thing--just bring it in, if it fails, get it fixed in 45 days to avoid going through the whole inspection again.

A few times in the past I had failed, and been pulled over within the 45 days and was not issued a ticket. I assumed therefore that it was actually legal to drive for those 45 days until I got it fixed, but the MVC said you can be ticketed for driving with the rejected sticker, from the day that you fail. I guess in theory a cop could sit down the road from the inspection center and pull people over all day as they leave the station (not that that's a realistic scenario, more like something the folks at Reno 911 would attempt).
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  #12  
Old 01-09-2006, 12:34 PM
SmackFu SmackFu is offline
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In Connecticut, you have 30 days after the due date before there's any penalty at all (and it's just double the nominal fee, $40 instead of $20). I am very amused by that policy.
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  #13  
Old 01-09-2006, 01:03 PM
Philster Philster is offline
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I went a year past the date in NJ. I got the vehicle inspected at the state insp station, it flunked, and I drove off. Was fairly new vehicle, but I had a center brake light out, and didn't know (and was a beyatch to change later).

I was pulled over later that day for the sticker...I showed receipt of just being there, and el copo said that if it were any other day (than the date on the inspection 'failure' paperwork) that he'd ticket me.

Driving back to the insp station the next weekend was pretty much at my own risk.
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