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Vehicle Registration Rules Victoria

Vehicle Registration Rules Victoria

Quick answer: There is no need for an annual inspection for a vehicle registered in Victoria; however, you might have to complete an RWC (Roadworthy Certificate) before you sell your car or register a car you just purchased.

It’s easy to get overwhelmed when you’re researching Victoria (VIC) rego check rules and regulations – but we’re here to help! We’ve gathered all of the most important points about Victorian licence and vehicle registration rules here – so you can get a quick overview of what’s relevant to you.

Vehicle Registration Rules & Roadworthy Certificate (RWC) in Victoria

Here’s a summary of the key Vehicle Registration Rules in Victoria:

  • Registration Requirement: All vehicles driven on Victorian roads must be registered, with exceptions for temporary permits, towed unregistered vehicles, or vehicles being moved with an unregistered vehicle permit.
  • Eligibility: Individuals over 16 years old or bodies corporate (companies) can register vehicles.
  • New Vehicle Registration: You typically have 30 days to register a new car in your name. Proof of purchase, an identity check, and a Roadworthy Certificate (RWC) are required.
  • Used Vehicle Registration: When buying a used car already registered in Victoria, you have 14 days to transfer the registration to your name. No RWC is required for the transfer itself, but it might be needed if the car is sold to a licensed motor vehicle trader or if there’s a defect notice.
  • Moving to Victoria (Registration Transfer): If moving to Victoria from another state or territory and bringing your registered car, you have three months to transfer registration to Victoria. An RWC inspection might be required.
  • Registration Period: You can choose to have vehicles registered for periods of 3, 6, or 12 months.
  • Fees: Registration fees depend on vehicle type, emissions, chosen registration period, and any concessions you might be eligible for (e.g., electric vehicles).

Roadworthy Certificate (RWC) Victoria, Australia:

Motor vehicle duty and an RWC is mandatory in several situations:

  • Selling a registered vehicle in Victoria (unless sold to a spouse or licensed motor vehicle trader).
  • Re-registering a vehicle after it’s been unregistered.
  • Clearing a vehicle defect notice issued by VicRoads.
  • Required for some specific vehicle types (e.g., taxis, buses) as part of regular inspections.
  • An RWC is valid for 30 days from the date of issue for registration purposes.

What’s Checked During an RWC Inspection:

A licensed vehicle tester inspects the vehicle to ensure it meets safety standards set by VicRoads.

By understanding these requirements and what’s involved in an RWC, you can ensure a smooth process when registering your vehicle in Victoria.

During a vehicle registration RWC (Roadworthy Certificate) inspection in Victoria, a licensed tester will assess the vehicle’s condition to ensure it meets specific safety standards set by VicRoads. Here’s a breakdown of the key areas typically checked:

Essential Safety Components:

  • Brakes: The inspector will verify the functionality of the braking system, including pedal feel, responsiveness, and stopping power. They’ll also check for wear and tear on brake pads, discs/drums, and any leaks in the hydraulic system.
  • Steering and Suspension: The condition of steering components, proper alignment, and any leaks will be examined. They’ll ensure the steering feels responsive and the vehicle tracks straight without pulling to one side.
  • Tyres: Tread depth will be measured to ensure it meets the minimum legal requirement. The inspector will also check for any damage, bulges, or uneven wear on the tyres, along with proper inflation pressure.
  • Lights and Indicators: Operation of all lights, including headlights, taillights, brake lights, car battery, turn signals, hazard lights, and reverse lights, will be verified.
  • Windscreen and Windows: Cracks, chips, and any other damage that could significantly obstruct the driver’s vision will be assessed.
  • Seatbelts: Functionality and proper operation of all seatbelts will be checked, including retractors and buckles.

Additional Checks:

    • Body and Chassis: The inspector will look for any signs of rust, excessive damage, or modifications that could compromise the vehicle’s structural integrity or affect safety.
    • Fluid Levels: Levels and condition of engine oil, brake fluid, and coolant will be checked for leaks or other issues.
    • Vehicle Identification Number (VIN): The VIN on the car will be verified to match the one on the registration documents. (This might not be part of every inspection)
ORGANISE your Vehicle INSPECTION in Victoria .
It’s recommended to have your car serviced and in good working order before any registration inspection to avoid potential issues.

Helpful Resources:


  • The RWC is valid for 30 days from the date of issue for registration purposes.
  • It’s recommended to have your car serviced and in good working order before an RWC inspection.
  • You can find a list of VicRoads-approved testers to get an RWC on their website.

If you’re unsure about any of the vehicle registration rules in Victoria – it’s a good idea to give the VicRoads customer service centre a call. They’ll be able to walk you through exactly what you need. Don’t be tempted to drive an unregistered vehicle – it can lead to hefty fines and possible prosecution.


  • Make sure your car is in good working order before any rego check with a car service. 
  • If buying a second-hand car, make sure you get a Pre-purchase Inspection to make sure the car is accident-free and not in need of major mechanical work.

Written By

Matt Banks

Matt is the founder of Autohero.com.au and has been hooked on cars and repairs ever since childhood.

A veteran in automotive since leaving school, Matt has completed his trade as a panel beater and is across all things with wheels.

His first car was a 1967 FORD XR Wagon followed by a string of collectable Holden’s.

Have a question for Matt? leave a comment below.

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