Dear Clarke County Citizens,
We are proud to provide you with this webpage. This is our way of introducing our office personnel to the citizens of Clarke County. We have provided information that we hope will be beneficial to you as you conduct business with our office. As you navigate this site, you will find that there are blank forms that can be downloaded to help eliminate return trips to our office. We will continue to strive to better inform the citizens of current laws and changes in our office. Please feel free to call us at 251-275-4141 if we can assist you in any way. “Better knowledge and communication are the keys to an efficient office.”
114 Court Street
Post Office Box 369
Grove Hill, Alabama 36451
Brandi Chapman- Chief Clerk
Valencia Coats- Clerk
Alma Williamson- Clerk
Beth Chavous- Clerk
Laterian Dunning- Clerk
Vehicle Registration: The Alabama Department of Revenue in Montgomery sets all vehicle values, all title regulations and all other regulations regarding motor vehicle laws. All vehicles in Alabama are personal property. The tax on this property is paid in advance from time of registration until your renewal month. These laws and regulations get their basis from the laws passed by the Alabama Legislature.
Must be a resident of Clarke County to have vehicles registered here. You have 20 calendar days from the date of purchase to register your vehicle, failure to do so will result in a $15.00 penalty plus interest. Registrants are required to provide *proof of insurance and a valid Alabama Driver’s License or Alabama Non- Driver’s ID (Valid Out of State Driver’s License-accepted). Motor Vehicle Department accepts the following forms of payment only: Cash, Check (No Out of State), Cashiers Check, Money Order and Debit/Credit card. If using a Credit/Debit card there will be a 2 ½% processing fee (American Express-not accepted).
*Must have current proof of Insurance (id cards are required for all motor vehicle transactions), it is the customers responsibility to provide this information, our system does not automatically load insurance information. Failure to provide current insurance, will result in the customer having to retrieve the required information.
**Due to the high volume of customers, the staff is not responsible for calling insurance companies or dealerships for information. Again, this is the customers responsibility. Also, no tag prices will be given over the phone, or tax information.
Vehicles with gross weight over 12,000 lbs., or used for commercial use, the registrant is required to provide the GVW in order to be issued the proper tag. To register a vehicle with a gross weight of 55,000 lbs., or more, a completed Schedule 2290 form (obtainable from the Internal Revenue Service) must be presented at the Motor Vehicle Department.
Alabama requires that all trailers be tagged and registered. Titling is also required for trailers with GVW 12,000 lbs or more.
Alabama Residents First Time Registration Documentation Requirements: (this will cover vehicles purchased from a dealer and/or private party)
-Title or Alabama Title Application
-Bill of Sale- date of purchase, amount *(State requires no less than $100.00), buyer/seller signature, description of vehicle (year, make, model and vehicle identification number/VIN) and 1 witness signature or notarized. *$0.00 (Gift- change of ownership between husband or wife, or immediate family only)
-Proof of Insurance- provisions of Act 2000-554 requiring minimum liability insurance coverage for motor vehicles became effective June 1, 2000. Of the 51 jurisdictions in the United States , 48 of them have minimum insurance requirements. Coverage must be in effect and proof provided in order to register vehicle. *MLI- email: email@example.com or fax# (334)-353-8105
-Valid Driver’s License or Non-Driver’s ID- Owner must provide a driver’s license number or non-driver’s identification number (including M/D/YR exp) or FEIN (Federal Employer Identification Number) if the owner is a company. Failure to provide the proper identification will result in registration incompletion.
*If you sold or traded your vehicle and would like to transfer your tag, make sure you bring a copy of the bill of sale where the vehicle was sold or make sure that the vehicle is listed as a trade-in on your paper work.
Out of State- New Alabama Resident- First Time Registration Requirements: To avoid late fees or citations, new Alabama residents are allowed a 30 day grace period to register their vehicle(s) with their local county office. Please have the following documentation:
-Out of State Title or Copy of Out of State Title (copies of titles are only accepted when there is a lien holder listed on the title and vehicle is still financed- you may send in for a request through your lien holder for the copy of the title. Some financial institutions require a request letter from your local DMV).
*Request Letter Requirements- Make sure you have the owner name, as listed on your financing agreement; account number; Make, Model, Year, VIN of vehicle financed; fax number and department of financial institution. Once request has been submitted, allow 10-15 business days before expecting response from the finance company.
Military Members & Vehicle Registration: Laws are different for members of the military registering their vehicles in Alabama depending on whether you are from out of state and stationed in AL, an Alabama resident currently in the state, or resident stationed somewhere else.
- Non-Resident Military Registration: Members of any of the Armed Forces branches stationed in Alabama are not required to register their vehicle(s) with the Alabama Motor Vehicles Division as long as you have a current registration in your home state and valid insurance. If you would like to register your vehicle in Alabama, you can do so by following the process outlined above for new Alabama residents.
- Resident Military Registration: Alabama residents have the same registration process as civilians.
- AL Military Residents Stationed Out of State: You can contact your local county office about registering by mail or other possible options you may want to consider.
Titles: Every motor vehicle not more than 35 model years old which is domiciled in Alabama and is required to be registered in Alabama is required to have an Alabama certificate of title. Travel trailers and folding and collapsible camping trailers not more than 20 model years old also are required to have an Alabama certificate of title. Manufactured homes not more than 20 model years old are also required to be titled.
Exclusions for Alabama certificate of title- motor vehicle more than 35 model years old or trailer more than 20 model years old; Mobile homes, travel trailers, and mobile trailers designated 1989 year models and prior year models; folding or collapsible camping trailer more than 20 model years old.
“Certificate of Title Exemptions”- Section 32-8-31(4), Code of Alabama 1975, has been amended so that no certificate of title shall be issued for a vehicle for which the Alabama license plate issuing official has verified that the current owner or operator is recorded as the owner or operator on a currently effective certificate of title issued by another state and the certificate of title is being held by a recorded lienholder. Accordingly, a vehicle normally subject to the Alabama title law can be registered without obtaining an Alabama title first if all of the following requirements are met:
1) The registrant is listed as the owner or operator on the out of state certificate of title.
2) There is a lien recorded on the out of state certificate of title.
3) The title is being physically held by the lienholder and the title was not issued by one of the states listed below.
*The following is a list of states that sends the valid original title to the owner and not to the lienholder. Applicants from these states must surrender the out-of-state title to the license plate issuing official and their vehicles will be required to be titled in the State of Alabama:
- Michigan (unless owner authorizes title to be mailed to lienholder)
- Montana (unless owner authorizes the mailing with signature)
- New Jersey
- New York
- South Dakota (unless owner indicates that title is to be mailed to lienholder)
- Wyoming (title may be mailed to either the owner or lienholder as requested)
Title Application fees- $18.00 for all motor vehicles and trailers; $23.00 for manufactured homes.
No strike-outs or alterations are permitted in assignments. All signatures must be identical to names on the supporting documents. White-out will void the title completely resulting in application for a replacement title.
Title Documents Required:
-Original title properly executed by the seller to the new owner (new owner must be present) with bill of sale or;
-Manufacturer’s Certificate of Origin (new owner must be present) with bill of sale or;
-Abandon Motor Vehicle completed Bill of Sale (Original with Signatures of Buyer and Seller)
*Odometer Reading- required for vehicles less than 10 years old and less than 16,000 lbs
When transferring ownership on a title, the purchaser(s) must be present to sign the title application or a MVT 5-13 Power of Attorney (properly signed and notarized) has been completed and presented with the Documentation provided.
Vehicle Inspection– first time applications for Alabama certificate of title are required to have a VIN inspection completed before processing. Vehicle must be present for licensing official to complete inspection or a MVT 5-10 Motor Vehicle Inspection by a Government Official (properly completed) must be presented. Inspections will not be completed after 4:30 pm. Inspections will not be completed during severe weather (rain, snow, sleet, etc).
Liens on Titles- owner must provide the lien holder information (lien holder, mailing address).
If the previous owner of the vehicle is deceased, the following applies:
-If will was probated, buyer will present a “Letters of Testamentary”, Title and Bill of Sale
-If will was not probated, buyer will present a copy of the death certificate and a MVT 5-6 Deceased Owner Affidavit (must be typed, signed), title and bill of sale
All documents must have the name and signature of the individual that has been assigned to the estate.
Replacement Title fee- $18.00; Please note that if the previously issued title had a lienholder listed, the replacement title will be mailed back to the lienholder unless the vehicle’s owner provides a lien release stating the lienholder’s interest in the vehicle has been paid in full. In cases where the vehicle is less than 12 model years old, a lien release will be required in order to remove the lienholder’s name from the title. However, in cases where the vehicle is 12 model years old or older, a lien can automatically be removed from the title if 4 years or more have passed from the recorded lien date. The liens for travel trailers and vehicles with a gross weight of 12,000 (including manufactured homes and motor homes) or more are not covered under the 12 year rule, and must generally have a lien release.
Name Changes/Corrections and Variances- Section 32-8-30, Code of Alabama 1975, requires that if the owner’s legal name has changed from the name recorded on the certificate of title, an application for a corrected certificate of title must be made to reflect the owner’s current legal name. Registrations cannot be renewed until an application for a corrected certificate of title has been made. The title, supportive documentation, and a valid driver’s license/ non driver’s id must be provided.
Examples of Supportive Documentation:
- Copy of marriage certificate
- Copy of divorce decree granting name change
- Other legal documentation granting name change(s) for other reasons.
Reporting Involuntary Transfers due to Court Order- Section 32-8-46, Code of Alabama 1975, was amended to require a person or entity initiating an involuntary transfer by operation of law to give notice of action to the Department at least 35 calendar days prior to the date of the transfer. The person or entity shall utilize the Department’s Involuntary Transfer portal to report the transfer of ownership. The notice provisions shall not apply to a motor vehicle transferred pursuant to a divorce decree, or to a motor vehicle transferred pursuant to documents creating a lien or other security interest in the motor vehicle. An application for certificate of title may not be issued for a motor vehicle subject to these provisions until the notice requirements are satisfied.
ETAPS will not allow the creation of a title application for an involuntary transfer due to a court order until the transfer has been reported to the Department and the 35 day notification period has expired. The Department will reject applications for certificates of title for failure to comply with the notification requirements.
Abandon/Unclaimed Motor Vehicle- A motor vehicle as defined in Section 32-8-2, that has been unclaimed as provided in Section 32-8-84 for not less than 30 calendar days from the date the notice was sent to the owner and lienholder of record, or if no owner or lienholder of record could be determined, has been unclaimed for not less than 30 calendar days. The term “abandoned motor vehicle” also includes any attached aftermarket equipment installed on the motor vehicle that replaced factory installed equipment. If you have a vehicle that meets these qualifications then please visit this link for further assistance and information on further action: https://unclaimed.mvtrip.alabama.gov/.
Tags and Tag Fees:
Tag Renewals: Motor Vehicle renewal months in Alabama are based upon the first letter of the registrant’s last name. After a vehicle has been registered, the annual renewal month for your tag is as follows:
FIRST LETTER OF
A & D
C & E
F, G & N
H & O
M & I
P & L
J, K & R
Q, S & T
U, V, W, X, Y & Z
National Guard, Commercial & Fleet Vehicles
Leased, commercial and fleet vehicles are subject to renewal in the months of October and November and the registrations for these type vehicles expire on November 30; provided, vehicles registered pursuant to the International Registration Plan (IRP) are assigned renewal registration months by the Department of Revenue in Montgomery.
Registration Renewal Notice– courtesy notice, generally mailed around the first of the month. Again, this is a courtesy notice (reminder) and not a bill. Failing to receive a notice does not waive your obligation to renew before your plates expire. This office will mail over 25,000 notices a year and cannot be responsible for every registrant receiving his/her notice. These notices are based on last years registrations, therefore you may receive a notice on a vehicle you no longer own. Alabama counties are not required to send renewal notices.
Tag Fees: Registration fees depend on a number of factors. Fees for first time registration are calculated according to:
- Vehicle type (car, truck, motorcycle, etc)
- Vehicle weight
- Registration renewal month
- County taxes and surcharges
Base Tag Fees: For most vehicles, ad valorem (property) tax and local issuance fees will also apply. Prorated tag fees (1 month–11 months) are not allowed for most vehicle REREGISTRATIONS (renewals). EXCEPTIONS: Alabama law allows prorated registration fees for self-propelled campers, farm trucks, and farm tractors that are to be REREGISTERED (or registered for the first time). Alabama law also allows prorated fees for newly acquired vehicles and vehicles initially brought into Alabama. The fees below DO NOT include service fees, taxes, or fees for other transactions, such as titling a vehicle, that may be required for vehicle registration.
- Standard Plate- $24.25 (annual); may be prorated for first time registration
- Plate Issuance- $5.00 additional; distinctive plates are subject to this additional fee but only when a metal plate is issued
Difference in the cost of tag renewal from year to year may result from:
-normally, a vehicle’s value will depreciate, reducing the assessed value of the vehicle
-you may have moved into a new jurisdiction with a different tax rate
-the tag you bought last year may have been prorated for a partial year. If so, your assessment this year will be higher since it will reflect a full year
-occasionally, the company which provides market values to the Department of Revenue assigns the same or higher values if a vehicle is a popular used vehicle
Late fee and Penalty– applied in addition to the current fees.
-Failure to renew your tag in your renewal month results in $15.00 plus interest penalty. There is no grace period, beginning the first day of the following month, penalty is applied.
-Failure to transfer a purchased vehicle within 20 calendar days results in a $15.00 penalty.
-Failure to register a vehicle within 30 days of an individual moving into the State with a valid out-of state license results in a $15.00 penalty.
There are two options for renewing your tag:
1) In office tag renewal by registered owner must bring tag renewal notice, tag number or VIN of the vehicle they are wanting to renew, valid driver’s license or non driver’s identification, valid proof of insurance and correct form of payment. If the registered owner is unable to come into the office they may give permission for an individual to come in the office for them with the tag renewal notice, tag number or VIN, copy of owner’s valid driver’s license, valid proof of insurance and correct form of payment (if paying with personal check, make sure the check is properly completed, signed and the driver’s license number of the account holder is provided)
Commercial Heavy Duty Truck Tag Renewal: (X5-X9 tag renewal) Renewal of vehicles with a gross vehicle weight of 55,000 lbs or greater, must bring their processed (completed and processed form for the current renewal year) 2290 Form Heavy Highway Vehicle Use Tax, in order to complete tag renewal. IRP Fleet Renewal: The apportioned market value for Alabama registered IRP trucks is to be determined by using the apportionment factor (fleet mileage traveled inside the State of Alabama as a percentage of total fleet mileage traveled in all jurisdictions during the previous reporting period) as reported to the Alabama Department of Revenue Motor Vehicle Division in the previous year. At the time of renewal, Owner is responsible for providing either the IRP Billing Invoice or the mileage data detail he/she reported for proof of the apportionment factor.
Dealer Tag Renewal: Licensed Dealers must provide a copy of current Regulatory License before tags will be renewed. Regulatory Licenses for Dealers, Wholesalers, Rebuilders and Reconditioners may visit https://dealerlicense.mvtrip.alabama.gov for instructions for new regulatory license and renewals.
2) Registered owners may renew their tag by mail. There is an additional $2.00 mail fee added. Renewing your registration by mail is subject to take a little extra time in processing completion. To avoid a penalty, your renewal must be postmarked no later than the last day of the month your tag expires. Make sure include the following: tag renewal notice, copy of proof of insurance, copy of driver’s license of registered owner, a contact phone number, note of any changes (address, phone, etc) and correct form of payment. If you do not have the renewal notice you may send tag number or VIN number of the vehicle, along with the other information requested. If you are military, college student or working out of state, please enclose the mailing address you would like your registration sent to. Please include a valid phone number that you may be contacted, in case the mail clerk has any further questions or needs anymore information.
Renew Registration of a Non-Operational Vehicle- If you need to renew the expired plates of a vehicle that has been non-operational and/or in storage for an extended period of time, you will need to bring proof of insurance, valid driver’s license and one of the following:
-Complete a Motor Vehicle Affidavit (Form MV IRP-15) certifying that at no time did you operate your vehicle on public roads while your registration was expired.
-Parts Bills (must be motor, transmission related) or receipt from an automotive mechanic shop (receipt should have the business letterhead, description of the vehicle, description of repairs, date or duration the vehicle was inoperable as well as the signature of the business owner).
Failure to provide one of the two forms of documentation, will result in the registrant being required to pay all past due registration fees and penalties.
Replacement Registration, Sticker and/or License Plate: If your Alabama license plate or decals are damaged, lost or stolen, you can request replacements. Registrant will need the following documents to apply for replacement credentials: Application For Replacement Credentials (Form MV 40-12-265-1), proof of insurance and valid driver’s license or non-driver’s identification. Vehicles that have stolen credentials will also need to provide proof of police report. If you find your lost credentials after applying for replacements, you must surrender them to the office. The fee for a replacement plate or sticker is $2.00.
Transfering and/or Surrendering Tags: When you sell, trade, donate or otherwise no longer use your vehicle, you’ll need to remove the license plate and either transfer it or surrender it over to the office.
Surrender Tag- You DO NOT have to surrender your tag if you move to another state. You may be required to surrender your tag to the office for the following:
-if you have a lapse of coverage or cancellation in your car insurance
-upgrade your license plate
-recovered lost, stolen, or damaged plates
Transfer Tag– In order to transfer a tag the vehicle must be sold, traded or declared a total loss. If the vehicle has been sold or traded a bill of sale is required in order to transfer your previous tag to the newly acquired vehicle. If the vehicle is a total loss a statement from the insurance company verifying that the vehicle has been totaled is required in order to transfer the tag from the previous vehicle to the new vehicle. Previous tag owner must also be listed as an owner on the new vehicle in order to be able to complete transfer. Transfer fee $1.25 along with other applicable fees that may apply.
License Plates: Alabama Residents will receive license plates and registration stickers when they complete their Alabama vehicle registration. There are more than 120 different types of license plates available in Alabama. The state’s standard license plate design changes every 5 years.
Types of Special License Plates: The following plates are all subject to charge additional fees. The fees are charged in addition to your regular registration fees annually. Some of the plates may require proof of documentation before being eligible for issuance. This link will you provide you with all of the plates that Alabama has to offer as well the eligibility/requirements and additional fees http://www.revenue.alabama.gov/motorvehicle/specialty.cfm
Personalized Plates: Personalized plates must be ordered through the Alabama Department of Revenue (PROS). Plate selection must be available and approved by PROS. Once the selection has been approved, the plate will be ordered. You will be given proof of your plate order. The plates are mailed directly to the address provided by the registrant within 4-6 weeks upon placing the order. A 60- day temporary tag will be issued when your tag is ordered. You will be given proof the tag has been ordered along with your registration stickers for the tag when it arrives. There is no additional fee for personalization. ***Please note: Once a tag order has been placed you are not allowed to change the tag or personalization***
Special Interest Plates: These are plates that support different activities, organizations, causes and professions. 2 Types: 1)Specialty-unique design 2) Generic-have a small logo or image on a white background. Some group or organization plates require proof of eligibility before issuance.
Collegiate Plates: These plates consist of colleges and universities. The plates are available to anyone and the additional fees are used to fund scholarship programs.
Racing Plates: If you are a fan of motor vehicle racing, there are generic racing plates for different drivers to show your love and support for the sport. The additional fees for the race plates help fund the International Motorsports Hall of Fame.
Military Plates: Alabama offers military plates for different branches of the military, service medals, particular campaigns, and even specific battles. Some of the plates are eligible for personalization. Tag fees vary from plate selection and qualifications of documents provided.
- Military Branch Plates- You must be an active, retired or honorably discharged member of the U.S. military.
- Plates related to specific battles, wars, or campaigns- You must have proof of your participation, such as military discharge papers.
- Award Plates- You must have discharge papers or other official correspondence from the U. S. Department of Veterans Affairs showing you received the award.
- Disable Veteran Plates- Must provide proof of the percentage of disability issued by the U.S Department of Veterans Affairs.
Antique Plates: Antique and vintage plates are available for cars, trucks and motorcycles that meet specific criteria. Must be one of the following: A car, truck or tractor that weighs no more than 26,000 lbs gross weight; A motorcycle or fire truck. The vehicle must be more than 30 years old and owned as a collector’s item; have original or true to original parts and design including: body, chassis, engine, and transmission. Vehicles eligible for vintage plates can also have original AL license plates issued in the same year as the vehicle was made. You must acquire the vintage plate yourself and apply to use it as you would for any other specialty plate. These are a permanent plate so if you sale the vehicle then the plate stays with the vehicle not the previous owner.
Temporary Tag: 2 Types
- 60 Day Temporary- a laser printed, weather resistant material that will allow the tag to be attached to the license plate bolt holes on the rear of the vehicle; issued by licensing officials to allow Alabama residents to operate their vehicles until a distinctive and/or personalized metal license is manufactured.
- 20 Day Temporary- a laser printed, weather resistant material that will allow the tag to be attached to the license plate bolt holes on the rear of the vehicle; issued by licensing officials and designated agents (ie automobile dealers) of the Department to allow a vehicle to be operated without a registration or operator permit (ie Alabama title application). Required documents for applicant issuance are a bill of sale (must meet Alabama law), title or title application, proof of insurance and driver’s license. Issuance Fee $2.25.
Handicap Plates and Placards- Alabama residents who have a disability may qualify for handicap plates and/ or placards. Licensing officials require a MVR 32-6-230 form (*Refer to link below) completed and signed by the applicants doctor. Applicants should also present a valid driver’s license or non- driver’s id along with the completed form.
Handicap Application- http://revenue.alabama.gov/motorvehicle/mvforms/MVR326230.pdf
3 Types of Handicap Issuances:
- Handicap Plates- Alabama residents with a qualified disability who are owners of private passenger automobiles to include pickup trucks and recreational vehicles with a gross vehicle weight of 12,000 pounds or less. Any private agency, nursing home, church, or charitable institution that submits to the licensing authority proof satisfactory to the commissioner that it operates a motor vehicle for the primary purpose of transporting one or more individuals with disabilities may apply for the distinctive plates.
- Permanent Handicap Placards- valid for a period not to exceed five (5) years; Placards are not vehicle specific. The individual with the qualifying disability may be issued two (2) placards; provided, if the individual is issued a disability access license plate, only one placard shall be issued. Placards are designed to hang from the rearview mirror so that they may easily be inspected by law enforcement, when necessary. If a vehicle does not have a rearview mirror, the placard must be placed on the dashboard of the vehicle so that it visible and can easily be inspected by law enforcement, when necessary. *Check with licensing official about renewals.
- Temporary Handicap Placards- valid for a period not to exceed six (6) months; same design as permanent placards. Placards are distinguished by color: blue (permanent) red (temporary). Once the placard expires you will be required to have another application completed by your doctor in order to be issued additional placards.
Mandatory Liability Insurance: The Alabama Mandatory Liability Insurance Law provides that no person shall operate, register, or maintain registration of a motor vehicle designed to be used on a public road or highway unless it is covered by a liability insurance policy. The law was passed to protect consumers when they are involved in an accident. Liability insurance policies must issued by insurers licensed to do business in Alabama for no less than:
- $25,000 for death or bodily injury to one person
- $50,000 for death or bodily injury to two or more persons; and
- $25,000 for damage or destruction of property.
Minimum liability insurance is required on all self propelled motor vehicles. Some vehicles that are exempt from the law include trailers, government owned vehicles and vehicles covered under a commercial automobile liability insurance policy. Section 32-7A-5, Code of Alabama 1975, provides a list of other vehicles that are specifically exempt from the law.
Complying With the Law:
Beginning January 1, 2013, license plate issuing officials will attempt to verify liability insurance utilizing the State of Alabama Online Insurance Verification System, which will allow license plate issuing officials to immediately verify the insurance status of a vehicle at any point in time.
If insurance cannot be verified through the Online Insurance Verification System, vehicle owners must provide evidence of insurance to the license plate issuing official. The insurance card is the most common evidence of current insurance. To be acceptable, the proof of insurance must display the current effective date, insurer’s NAIC number, vehicle identification number (VIN) and policy number.
In addition to providing evidence of insurance, a valid state issued driver license, non driver identification card, or national driver license must be provided for each owner reflected on the vehicle title. If the vehicle owner is a company, the federal employer identification number (FEIN) is required.
*Please Note: If you have made any changes: insurance company, insurance policy, purchase of a new vehicle, you must bring your proof of insurance. Due to system maintenance and possible other factors, registrants must provide proof of insurance. Our system does not allow licensing officials to search for insurance coverage.
The mandatory liability insurance law is enforced by the following methods:
- Verification of insurance by law enforcement during traffic stops or accidents.
- Verification of insurance by county license plate issuing officials prior to vehicle registration or renewal.
- Verification of insurance by the Department of Revenue by sending requests for insurance information to vehicle owners:
- A) whose registrations have been suspended;
- B) who have been convicted of mandatory liability insurance violations; or
- C) whose driving privileges have been suspended or revoked.
Vehicle operators must provide evidence of insurance upon request to any law enforcement officer. Beginning January 1, 2013, law enforcement officers will attempt to verify liability insurance utilizing the State of Alabama Online Insurance Verification System, which will allow law enforcement officers to immediately verify the insurance status of a vehicle.
Penalties for Violations:
An owner or operator convicted of a mandatory liability insurance violation may be fined up to $500 for the first violation and up to $1,000 for the second or subsequent violation and/or a six month driver’s license suspension.
In addition to the above violation, if a vehicle is registered or operated without liability insurance, the vehicle registration will be suspended and the vehicle owner will be subject to the following:
- First Violation- $200 reinstatement fee
- Second or Subsequent Violation- $400 reinstatement fee
Evidence of current insurance along with the reinstatement fee may be submitted to the county license plate issuing official in the vehicle owner’s county of residence. *The reinstatement fee must be paid before a tag is issued. The fee must also be paid in CASH ONLY or CERTIFIED FUNDS ONLY.
In cases where a vehicle owner affirms that the vehicle, for which the registration has been suspended, had insurance with an Alabama licensed insurance company on the ADOR specified insurance verification date, the owner must provide evidence of said insurance coverage for the insurance verification date along with the current proof of insurance coverage that includes:
- The insurance company name;
- The insurance company NAIC number;
- The insurance company telephone number and address, including city, state, and zip code;
- The policy holder’s insurance policy/binder number and policy effective and expiration dates
Once the licensing official has submitted the information and has received confirmation, the registration may be reinstated. In this there is no reinstatement fee required.
Insurance Unconfirmed: status code for situations where the insurance information submitted could not be confirmed and the registration is going to be resuspended. It is the registrants responsibility to go to their insurance company and have the insurance company send proof of coverage for the referenced verification date directly to our office (fax or email) or State of Alabama Department of Revenue MLI Division (may be sent by fax 334-353-8105 or email: firstname.lastname@example.org)
Revoked Registration: registration is revoked because the registrant submitted that the vehicle was stored, sold, or inoperable on the ADOR specified insurance verification date. The suspension may then be removed without the payment of the reinstatement fee; however, the registration will be revoked for the remainder of the registration period and the plate should be turned in to the licensing official. In the event the vehicle is no longer stored, inoperable or unused, a new license plate/registration must be obtained prior to operating the vehicle. In order to obtain a new license plate/registration, in accordance with administrative rule 810-5-1-244, the registrant must provide evidence of the vehicle’s non use to the licensing official prior to reregistering the vehicle along with current valid proof of insurance. The Motor Vehicle Affidavit (form MV IRP-15) may be utilized to satisfy this requirement or any documentation the official’s office deems appropriate. Failure to provide acceptable evidence of non use will result in the suspension of the vehicle registration.
Reinstatement: will be on a form and in the format prescribed by ADOR and shall contain the following information:
- The reinstatement issue and expiration date
- Vehicle registrant’s name, address, and driver license number
- Vehicle’s VIN, year, make, and model
- Vehicle’s current Alabama license plate number
- Insurance policy holder’s binder number or policy number
- Identification of issuing clerk
A reinstatement is valid up to sixty days from the date it is issued pending confirmation of liability insurance coverage on the insurance verification date, provided, that if ADOR does not receive verification of insurance coverage for the specified date from the insurance company reported by the motor vehicle owner, the reinstatement shall be revoked by ADOR. A notice of suspension will be issued to owners of vehicles for which a reinstatement has been revoked. Vehicle operators that operate the vehicle with a suspension will be subject to the penalties addressed by Section Code 32-7A-21.
Pending for confirmation of vehicle liability insurance coverage, the reinstatement shall be retained within the motor vehicle operating with the reinstated registration. A reinstatement cannot be transferred to another vehicle or vehicle owner.
The reinstatement shall be presented, on demand, by the vehicle operator, for inspection by law enforcement officers. A copy of the reinstatement is acceptable as evidence of the registration reinstatement for law enforcement purposes, if the information contained on the document is legible, unaltered, and has not been revoked by ADOR. Any erasures or other alterations of the information required on a reinstatement will render it void, and of no value to the person or vehicle described thereon.
The reinstatement is not acceptable as a substitute for a valid Alabama Motor Vehicle Registration Tag and Tax Receipt. The reinstatement is valid only for indicating that a motor vehicle MLI registration suspension has been reinstated, pending confirmation of vehicle liability insurance coverage in accordance with the MLI law.
Our office offers duplicates and renewals of Alabama driver’s license and Alabama non-driver identification. For first time issuances, out of state transfers, STAR IDs and other inquiries please call our local examiner office:
Clarke County State Examiner Office
Days & Hours of Operation- Thursdays & Fridays (8:00-4:00)
Phone- (251) 275-4351
For additional Alabama driver’s license information, Please visit:
Every Alabama resident who operates any motor vehicle (except a farm tractor or implement of husbandry temporarily upon any street or highway) must have a driver license. All applicants who have not been licensed in Alabama or whose Alabama license has been expired for over three years must pass the required drivers examination. A holder of an out of state license which has not been expired over one year does not have to pass a driver examination.
Visit a local driver license office.
An Alabama driver license will not be issued to an individual unless-and until all driver licenses in the person’s possession are surrendered to ALEA.
The following persons may drive a motor vehicle upon the streets or highways in Alabama without an Alabama driver license:
- Any person in the employ or service of the United States Federal Government while driving or operating a motor vehicle owned or leased by the United States Federal Government.
- Any person while driving any farm tractor or implement of husbandry temporarily operated or moved on the highway.
- A non-resident at least 16 years old who has in his immediate possession a valid driver license issued to him in his home state or country. This includes military personnel from other states and their families stationed in Alabama, even though their assignment in Alabama may be of long duration.
- A non-resident at least 16 years old whose home country does not require licensing of drivers may operate a motor vehicle as a driver of not more than 90 days in any calendar year, if the vehicle operated is duly registered for the current year in the home country of the non-resident.
- A non-resident who has a valid driver license from the state of previous residence may drive without an Alabama license for 30 days after becoming a resident of the state.
- Any non-resident fulltime student, properly enrolled and registered in a school, college, university, or trade school in this state, who holds a valid license from his home state or country.
An Alabama driver license shall not be issued to:
- Persons under 16 years of age. (See Pages 2-4 for exceptions)
- Any person who’s driving rights or privilege is suspended or revoked in any state.
- Any person afflicted with or suffering from a physical or mental impairment which, in the opinion of the Director of Public Safety or examining officer, will prevent such person from exercising reasonable and ordinary control over a motor vehicle.
- Any person failing to pass the examination when required.
- Any person who is a habitual drunkard or addicted to the use of narcotic drugs.
- Any person who is under the age of 19, not in compliance with Alabama Act 93-368, which requires secondary school graduation or current attendance, with limited exclusions.
The Learner’s License and Restricted License
The minimum driving age in Alabama is 16. However, there are certain exceptions and restrictions:
Learner’s License – Fifteen year olds may obtain a restricted Learner’s License for the purpose of learning to safely and effectively operate a motor vehicle. The examination for the license is taken from information in the Alabama Driver’s Manual. Upon satisfactory completion of the required examination, the applicant will be issued a regular Alabama driver license with a “Y” restriction. The “Y” restriction indicates that the holder may operate a motor vehicle while accompanied by a person who is 21 years of age or older and, who is duly licensed in this state or a licensed or certified driving instructor occupying the seat beside the operator. This Learner’s License is valid for four years.
Learner’s license – Sixteen Year Olds – Any person 16 years of age or older who, except for his lack of Instruction In operating a motor vehicle, would otherwise be qualified to obtain a driver license, may obtain a Learner’s License upon satisfactory completion of the required examination. The examination for this license is taken from Information in the Alabama Driver’s Manual. After satisfactory completion of the required examination, the applicant will be issued a regular Alabama driver license with a “Y” restriction. The “Y” restriction indicates that the holder may only operate a motor vehicle with a licensed driver occupying the seat beside the driver. This license is valid for four years. Both Learner’s Licenses may be suspended or revoked in the same manner and for the same cause as a driver license and may also be revoked for any violations of the terms and conditions on which it was issued.
Veteran License Designation
Since May 1, 2013, Alabama veterans have had the option of displaying proof of military service on their driver licenses.
To establish proof of service, a veteran must visit one of the Alabama Law Enforcement Agency’s Driver License examining offices, a license commissioner’s office or probate office, and present a DD-214 form from the U.S. Department of Defense that shows an “honorable” or “general under honorable conditions” status.
Other acceptable documents to obtain a veteran designation:
NGB Form 22 (Report of Separation and Record of Service) showing “honorable” or “general under honorable conditions”
DD Form 2 (green Active Duty ID card)
Retired ID Card (blue and pink in color)
There is no additional charge for the veteran designation for a first-time driver license applicant or for an individual seeking to renew his or her license. A veteran who chooses to add the designation before his or her renewal date, however, must pay the standard fee for a duplicate license.
Driver or Learner License (age 16 and older)
Two forms of identification, at least one of which contains a photograph (one form must be from the “primary” list, in addition to the Social Security card) or three forms of non-photo identification (one form must be from the “primary” list, in addition to the Social Security card)
Social Security card
Acceptable school enrollment form or proof of graduation (if younger than 19 and applying for the first time)
2 Proofs of Principal Residence
$5 test fee (no checks)
Applicants 18 or older who wish to complete all testing for a license must have a licensed driver, proof of car insurance and a vehicle that will pass inspection
$36.25 to purchase license (no checks)
Learner License (age 15)
U.S. birth certificate (certified and issued by the Bureau of Vital Statistics – NO PHOTOCOPIES)
Social Security card
Acceptable proof of school enrollment or graduation
2 Proofs of Principal Residence
$5 testing fee (no checks)
$36.25 to purchase license (no checks)
Out of State License Transfers
- Must be at an ALEA Office
- Out-of-state driver license
- Social Security card
- One item from primary list, in addition to the Social Security card
- Proof of school enrollment or graduation (if younger than 19)
- 2 Proofs of Principal Residence
- $5 transfer fee (no checks)
- $36.25 to purchase license (no checks)
Driver’s License and non-Driver Identification Cost:
- Renewal- $36.25
- Replacement- $31.25
CDL or CDL Learner License Applicants:
- Current driver license
- Social Security card
- 2 Proofs of Principal Residence
- If transferring from out of state, applicant must present one document from the “primary” list (in addition to the Social Security number document)
- Current Department of Transportation long medical form (unless medically exempt)
- $25 testing fee (no checks)
- Transportation Security Administration background check if transferring or obtaining a hazardous materials endorsement
- If not a U.S. citizen, applicant must legally be in permanent status in the United States and domiciled in Alabama
- Skills test if upgrading a license or first-time applicant (test by appointment only; $20 skills test fee)
- Proof of insurance
$66.25 to purchase class “A” license
$56.25 to purchase class “B” license
$36.25 to purchase class “C” license
$36.25 to purchase commercial learner license
The U.S. Department of Homeland Security, at the direction of President Trump, is extending the deadline for the REAL ID (called STAR ID in Alabama) to Oct. 1, 2021, in response to COVID-19.
In order to comply with the Federal REAL ID Act, the Alabama Law Enforcement Agency developed the STAR ID program. STAR ID is a step beyond an ordinary Alabama driver license or non-driver identification card and it meets all the requirements of federal law.
Effective October 1, 2021, every air traveler will need a REAL ID compliant license/ID (STAR ID) or another form of identification for domestic air travel. (See TSA’s website for a full list acceptable identification for domestic air travel.)
STAR IDs are issued originally to qualified individuals only at Alabama Law Enforcement Agency Driver License exam offices. County operated license offices will continue to provide renewals/duplicates for license, ID cards, and STAR ID.
Once the provision of the REAL ID Act (STAR ID) goes into effect, individuals who do not have an unexpired U.S. passport will need an Alabama STAR ID to board commercial aircraft for domestic flights or to enter certain regulated federal facilities.
In order to be issued a STAR ID, applicants must present four documents to verify identity/date of birth, Social Security number and address of principal residence. Below is a list of accepted documents in each category. Please read carefully.
Applicants must verify their identity and date of birth by providing one of the following documents:
- Valid, unexpired United States Passport
- Certified Birth Certificate
- Consular Report of Birth Abroad (Form FS-240, DS-1350, or FS-545
- Valid, unexpired Permanent Resident Card (Form I-551) issued by Department of Homeland Security (DHS) or Immigration and Naturalization Service (INS)
- Unexpired employment authorization document (EAD) issued by DHS (Form I-766 or Form I-688B)
- Unexpired Foreign Passport with a valid, unexpired U.S. Visa affixed, accompanied by the approved I-94 form documenting the applicant’s most recent admittance into the United States.
- Certificate of Naturalization issued by DHS (Form N-550 or N-570)
- Certificate of Citizenship issued by DHS (Form N-560 or N-561)
*If the applicant’s name has changed from that displayed on the document produced (marriage, adoption, court order, etc), official documents verifying this change will be required.
Applicants must verify their Social Security Numbers by providing one of the following documents:
- Social Security card
- United States Military Form DD 214
- Medicare/Medicaid Identification Card (if Social Security Number is followed by the letter A)
- W-2 Tax Form
- Applicants must verify their address of principal residence by providing any two of the following documents:
- Valid Alabama Driver License or Identification Card displaying applicant’s current address
- Voter Registration Card
- Residential Mortgage Contract
- Current Lease or Rental agreement for housing
- Proof of payment of residential property tax (Homestead)
- Previous year tax returns bearing applicants address
- Vehicle registration bearing applicants name and address
- Utility bill (Water, Gas, or Electric) less than 90 days old
- Any State or Federal Court documents indicating residence address
- School enrollment documentation
- Defense Department Form 214 (Report of Separation)
- Sex offender registration documents
- Current Homeowners insurance policy with name and address
- Social Security benefits statements/summary mailed to physical address
- S. or State Government check or other document mailed to applicants physical address
- Military Orders documenting duty station and place of residence.
*If utility bills or other similar documents feature the name of the applicant’s spouse or parent, the applicant must produce a marriage certificate or birth certificate verifying residence address.
Mandatory Liability Insurance:
The Alabama Mandatory Liability Insurance Law provides that no person shall operate, register, or maintain registration of a motor vehicle designed to be used on a public road or highway unless it is covered by a liability insurance policy. §32-7A-3, Code of Alabama 1975.
Pursuant to Act 2016-361 if a person involved in a motor vehicle incident was in violation of the mandatory liability insurance law and did not receive a citation at the time of the incident, they are subject to a civil penalty. A motor vehicle incident is defined as “an incident involving the driver of a motor vehicle when a traffic citation was issued by a law enforcement officer or the driver of a motor vehicle was involved in an accident and an accident report was filed”.
View Mandatory Liability Insurance Law Covering §41-27-40 – §41-27-48
What this means to you: You are subject to a civil penalty if:
You were involved in a motor vehicle incident and
The vehicle you were driving was not insured with the required liability insurance and
You were not issued a citation for no insurance at the time of the incident.
Boat Registration- Alabama registers all mechanically propelled vessels (including electric and battery powered), sailboats, and vessels for hire.
ALABAMA DOES NOT REQUIRE BOAT TRAILERS TO BE LICENSED AND DOES NOT HAVE A TITLE LAW ON BOATS AT THIS TIME.
Certification of Length for Vessels & Fees- Boats are divided into 4 classes as follows:
- Class I- Less than 16 ft; first time issuance and renewal fee $20
- Class II- 16 ft to less than 26 ft; first time issuance and renewal fee $25
- Class III- 26 ft to less than 40 ft; first time issuance and renewal fee $75
- Class IV- 40 ft and above; first time issuance and renewal fee $100
- Class V- (Dealer)- first time issuance fee $26; each additional dealer tag fee $4
Transfer- Applies to vessels with a current year registration but needs to be transferred into new owner’s name); Transfer fee $5
Transfer/ Renewal- Applies to vessels with no current registration that needs to be transferred into the new owner’s name; Transfer fee $5 and the correct class fee.
NOTE: If your vessel is brought into Alabama from another state, there will be no transfer charged, a new Alabama number will be issued. Also, if previously registered in another state, please surrender last state registration.
Duplicate- certificate has either been lost or destroyed; duplicate fee $5
Apply for Registration/ Renewal:
New Purchase- There is a 72 hour grace period for the registration a new boat. Whether you purchased your vessel in state or out of state you will be required to provide the following information for registration:
- Bill of Sale/ Buyers Order/ Purchase Agreement- must include price and show whether sales tax was collected for in state and out of state purchases.
- Valid Driver’s License or Non Driver’s Identification
- Other information about the vessel may be required if it is not included on the bill of sale
The Alabama boat registration system is on a staggered basis. The first letter of an individual’s last name determines the month of renewal. The renewal months in which a vessel owner shall register his vessel(s) indicated below:
- January- A, D
- February – B
- March- C, E
- April- F, G, N
- May- H, O
- June- M, I
- July- P, L
- August- J, K R
- September- Q, S, T
- October- U, V, W, X, Y, Z and all registered under company names. All dealers and liveries.
Your permanent Alabama registration number appears on the right hand side of the certificate preceded by the letters AL. The number contains 1 to 4 digits plus the 2 letter suffix following the number. This number remains with the boat regardless of change of ownership within the state. Registration number must be placed on each side of the bow of the vessel for which it was purchased, in such a position as will make it clearly visible at all times. The number must be displayed in three parts with a hyphen or space separating each part, ie AL-1234-AA and be of a color that contrasts with the background of the boat—dark on light or light on dark. Numbers shall be BLOCK proportion. Characters of varying thickness, slanted characters and scroll type characters are not acceptable. No number other than the number issued shall be displayed on either side of the bow. The validation decal must be affixed within 6 inches before or after and in line with the registration number on port and starboard bow.
Used Vessel Purchase- If you buy a used boat that is currently registered with this state, you must make application for transfer within 15 days. If you buy a used boat with an expired registration, you must currently register the boat before it is used. There is no grace period for a used boat. The following documentation is required to complete registration:
- Bill of Sale- must include price and with the description of the vessel and motor. (Vessels purchased from individuals must have a bill of sale including price, vessel and motor description, buyer and seller information/ signatures and one witness or notarized.
- Previous or Current Registration (includes in state and out of state registration)
In state used vessel purchase will also fall under the transfer category, please refer to the transfer for further information.
Homemade Vessels- required to have a hull serial number; Boat owners registering a homemade vessel shall apply with the Marine Police Division for a hull serial number to affixed to the transform of their boat. It is necessary to give the date construction was completed. There will be a $25 inspection fee for any homemade vessel requiring a hull identification number.
Hull Identification Number for Manufactured Vessels- All vessels manufactured after 1972 are required by Federal Law to have a hull identification number affixed to the vessel by the manufacturer. This 12 digit number is normally located on the outside stern of the vessel on the right side, below the gunwale. This number must be included on the registration certificate and application for registration.
Boat owners registering a homemade vessel shall apply with the Marine Patrol Division for a hull serial number which will be affixed to the transom of their boat.
Boating Education and Operator Certification/ License- No one under the age of 12 years may operate any motorized vessel (includes personal watercraft, such as a Sea Doo, waverunner etc) on Alabama’s waterways.
Certification/ License Requirements for Alabama Residents:
- Must be 12 years old or older to be eligible for a vessel operator’s license, but cannot operate alone until the age of 14.
- Operators 12 or 13 years old, after obtaining the vessel operator’s license, can only operate if there is someone 21 years old or older on board, who also has a vessel if necessary.
- Operators 14 years old or older, after obtaining the vessel operator’s license, my legally operate without supervision.
NOTE: The operator certification/license must be in possession at time of operation.
Certification/ License Requirements for Non Residents:
- Non residents 12 years old and older, may operate on Alabama waters up to 45 days per calendar year without having to obtain a vessel operator’s license. If operating a vessel for more than 45 days per calendar year, the non resident must get an Alabama Non Resident Vessel Operator’s License. Non residents who have obtained a vessel certification or license from their home state, may use that in lieu of the Alabama Non Resident Vessel Operator’s License.
HOWEVER: Non resident vessel operators 12 or 13 years old, can only operate if there is someone 21 years or older on board, who either has a valid vessel operator’s license in possession or fails under the 45 day exemption period because of non residency status, and who is seared in a position to take immediate control of the vessel if necessary.
For further information on vessel information, forms and certification/ licensing please continue with the link provided: http://www.outdooralabama.com/boat-registration
Residency, by law, is determined by your driver’s license. It is a violation of state law to willfully or knowingly make a false statement when purchasing an Alabama resident license.
Resident licensed drivers or non-drivers with identification card applying for hunting and fishing license must:
- Present a valid Alabama’s driver’s license or non-driver’s identification card (with the exception of qualified active duty military, spouse and dependents stationed in Alabama or college students)
- Reside continuously in Alabama for 90 days
- Cannot possess a valid driver’s license in any other state
Resident non-drivers without a valid identification card (Bona fide residents, not holding a valid driver’s license from Alabama or any other state) applying for hunting and fishing license must go to the Probate or License Commissioner and present at least two of the following documents:
- School registration (required for 5-16 years old)
- Previous year tax return (mailing address only)
- Voter registration card
- Home property tax
- Health insurance forms with address
- The last three months of a utility bill with address
- Certificate of employment, if containing proof of permanent residency
- Other legal documents that may establish residency after approval by the Conservation Department
In no instance will a resident of another state (except qualified military personnel and college students) be issued an Alabama resident license even if the person is able to produce these items.
Note: Applicants with multiple driver’s license are not considered Alabama residents and must use their out-of-state driver’s license to purchase non-resident licenses. An Alabama Driver’s License alone does not prove residency. Exceptions indicating that an Alabama driver’s license holder will be considered non-residents:
- Possessing a valid driver’s license from another state
- Posssessing a valid AL Foreign National driver’s license
- Social Security Number (required)
- Birth Certificate (required for all lifetime licenses age 11 and below)
- Attach copy of parent’s driver’s license. If guardian other than parent, paperwork showing custody and copy of their driver’s license. (required)
- If enrolled in day care or school, attach a copy of current report card or enrollment, or
- If not enrolled in day care or school, 2 additional proofs of residency are required:
- Copy of parent’s previous year Alabama tax return – showing child as a dependent and mailing address.
- Current certification of employment, if containing proof of permanent residency (parent or child)
- Current health insurance forms with child’s name and address
- Current doctor bill or other statement with child’s name and address
Residents 64 years of age purchase special lifetime licenses for the price of an annual license.
Residents 65 years of age and over are exempt from purchasing the following licenses (MUST have Alabama driver’s license or proof of permanent residence and age. Does not include non-resident landowners.):
- Freshwater Fishing
- Saltwater Fishing
- State Duck Stamp
- Wildlife Management Area
Exempt from Purchasing Licenses
- Residents under 16 years of age
- Residents 65 and over
- Resident Landowners
Residents that are exempt from purchasing licenses, may obtain your H.E.L.P # through your local office or online sales system http://www.outdooralabama.com/.
Resident Active Duty Military Home on Leave are exempt from purchasing a hunting and/or fishing license during their visit. They must:
- Have proof of residency (either an Alabama driver’s license or document stating Alabama is their home of residence)
- Have proof of leave in their possession
Resident FUR CATCHER, SEAFOOD, FRESHWATER COMMERCIAL FISHING AND MUSSEL CATCHERS.
Reside continuously in Alabama for the following period:
- Fur Catchers – 90 days
- Seafood – 12 months
- Freshwater Commercial Fishing – 12 months
- Mussel Catchers – 12 months
License officials may require more than two of these items in order to prove bona fide residency.
Game Check- All hunters are now required to report their deer and turkey harvests through the Game Check system.
Beginning August 22, 2016, hunters and anglers will be able to obtain the New Conservation ID#. This 6-digit permanent Conservation ID# can be used to report your deer or turkey harvest in the Game Check System.
Resident Documentation required:
- Valid Alabama driver’s license
- Conservation form/application completed and signed
- Must have a letter from the Social Security Administration (letter must be a current year letter, and letter must state receives benefits based on disability)
Licenses are re quired to be renewed every year.
Hunter Education: All individuals born on or after August 1,1977 purchasing a hunting, freshwater fishing or wildlife heritage license must show proof of completion of an approved hunter education course or:
- Be on active military duty with the appropriate documents indicating such; or
- Be an Alabama resident who is an active member of the Alabama National Guard of the United States; or
- Be a law enforcement officer certified by the Alabama Peace Officers Standards and Training Commission (APOSTC); or
- Hunt under the “supervision required” status
Individuals purchasing a license under the “supervision required” status must be under normal voice control, not to exceed 30 feet, of a properly licensed hunter 21 years of age or older. Under no circumstances shall the supervising person be the holder of a supervision required license.
State Business License expire on September 30th every year. Businesses have the month of October to renew. After October a penalty is applied plus interest (.05 interest is added per day). ***Businesses will no longer receive a courtesy notice/renewal reminder***
Please visit the link below for additional information: