Do you need to register a horse trailer in Wisconsin?

In today’s article, we will discuss: Do you need to register a horse trailer in Wisconsin? We will explain who needs to register a horse trailer in Wisconsin and how to do it. 

Do you need to register a horse trailer in Wisconsin?

You need to register and title a horse trailer in Wisconsin only if it has over 3,000 lbs. If your horse trailer doesn’t meet the weight criteria you do not have to register it unless it is used for hire or rental purposes. 

The registration process is quite simple and it costs $50. To apply  send a mail application to the following address:

Wisconsin Department of Transportation

P.O. Box 7949

Madison, WI 53707-7949

This is a list of the documents you need to send in order to register your horse trailer in Wisconsin:

  1. The  Certificate of Title or Manufacturer’s Statement of Origin (MSO), in original and signed by the previous owner of the trailer. If the horse trailer is new, then the certificate must be signed by the dealer. 
  2. The Wisconsin Title & License Plate Application form MV1, completed and signed.
  3. Title fee
  4. License plate fees
  5. Sales tax
  6. Local sales tax (if applicable)
  7. Check or money order made payable to Registration Fee Trust.

Basic requirements for registering a horse trailer or utility trailer in Wisconsin

We understand that the process of registering a horse trailer, livestock trailer or utility trailer can seem complicated for some of you. This is why, in this section of the article, we did our best to explain and simplify every step of the process.

  • First, what you need to do in order to register a trailer, is to do your research by contacting the department of motor vehicles (DVM) of the city where you live, simply do it through their official website.
  • Before heading to the department of motor vehicles, have your driver’s license and other acceptable identification with you, such as a valid photo ID card.
  • As a basic requirement, you must present proof that you are the owner of the horse trailer, such as the official date of purchase, since the invoice will include the year, brand, body, weight and identification number in addition to the buyer’s information. and seller.
  • When registering the trailer you must provide the title and in the event that you do not have it despite having recently purchased it, you must follow the procedures established by the department of motor vehicles so that you can obtain it.
  • You will even have to have the trailer examined and subject it to a safety inspection. To do this, you must go to one of the inspection stations of the motor vehicle department.
  • If the trailer requires a safety inspection, they can provide you with a temporary record, the duration and rate of which is determined by the department of motor vehicles in your region.
  • You will need to complete the application form to register the trailer and pay the required taxes. Regarding fees, these can vary depending on the location and include a registration fee, title fee, security fee, administrative fees and sales tax if your region charges it.
  • Keep in mind that the duration of the trailer registration will vary depending on the laws and regulations established by the department of motor vehicles in your region, although it generally does not extend for more than two years.
  • Make sure you provide adequate trailer insurance based on what you want to tow and drive on the road, as you must provide protection for both the trailer and what you plan to tow.

After you have completed the application process and registered the trailer, you will correctly attach the license plate.

Considerations for registering a horse trailer 

Keep in mind to register a horse trailer that you bought through a dealer you must present the original manufacturer’s certificate of origin duly assigned by the selling dealer, as copies are not accepted.

If you bought the used trailer from a private individual or dealer, you must present the original title duly signed by the seller.

In the event that the state does not title trailers, you must present the most recent registration along with the original bill of sale as copies are not accepted.

If you bought the trailer from a dealer you will need to present the seller’s invoice, accompanied by a legible copy of the application.

You will also present a legible copy of each owner’s driver’s license, otherwise they will be returned as they are not legible.

Even the owner and applicant identification must be completed accurately with the full name, address, date of birth and owner’s or renter’s driver’s license number if applicable.

Description of the horse trailer

The description of the horse trailer must be completed in its entirety with all the required information, since the weight of the trailer is necessary since if its space is empty in the title, an estimated weight will be required.

In this case, there will be a lien if it is 3,000 pounds or more. In turn, the state and use of the trailer must be completed indicating what you will use it for. You will also complete the information about the owner of the property with the name, address and date of attachment if applicable.

If the trailer was previously registered in another state with an empty weight of 2,000 pounds or more, an agent must personally verify the trailer’s identification number for any tears, erasures, or alterations.

The identification number must be identical to the number you enter on the form.

The officer verifying the vehicle identification number will fill in the date, printed name, badge or identification number and sign.

In the event that you use the trailer for work as a farmer, you are required to show a registration card for an agricultural operation issued by the minister of agriculture and food.

Remember that the way you purchased the trailer will determine which forms you need to fill out for registration.

Notarized property title for horse trailers

Therefore, if you have bought it from a private individual, you will present the title signed by a notary, the release of the guarantee, the application for the title, the disclosure of damages and the declaration of risk. 

But if you bought it from a dealer, you will file the title application, the damage disclosure statement, and the hazard statement.

If the trailer was titled in the name of the registered owner and you have the title, you will present: the title with the notary’s signature, the application for the title and the risk statement.

In the event that the title is in the possession of a registered creditor, you will present: the registration card, the title application, the risk statement and the trailer taxes.

Note that the property taxes on the trailer you wish to register must be paid by going to the county tax assessor, as this process is not handled by the fundraising agency or the DMV.

Final thoughts

Here is a summary of the steps that you need to follow in order to register a horse trailer in Wisconsin:

  1. You must only register a horse trailer that weighs 3,000 lbs or more. If your horse trailer doesn’t weigh 3,000 lbs but you are using it for rental services, you must register it anyway.
  1. You can send an envelope with all the necessary documents to the Wisconsin Department of Transportation. See the list with all necessary documents at the beginning of this article. 
  1. You can also visit your local DMV department for guidance, information, or to actually register your horse trailer.

Please feel free to contact us if you have any questions, comments or suggestions on the above content. 

FAQ on Do you need to register a horse trailer in Wisconsin?

What is the trailer “title”?

The “title” of a trailer is a legal document issued by the Department of Motor Vehicles (DMV) that indicates who has owned the vehicle, the main accident reports and the current condition of the vehicle. Titles also include the car’s VIN, make and model, year of manufacture, and any financing information. 

What does it mean to erase a trailer title?

Title laundering is a form of fraud that aims to hide title markings. Criminals who want to sell cars without revealing the title markings use title washing to scam buyers. To be clear, this is an illegal procedure.

Do you need to insure a horse trailer?

It is advisable to take out liability insurance for a horse trailer, especially since the insurance premium is quite reasonable. In most cases, the horse trailer is secured through the towing vehicle if the trailer is connected to the vehicle or is detached from the towing vehicle and is still moving.


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