Before you take your quad

Off-road registration required

Unregistered riders face fine of up to $5,000, impoundment of vehicles

As of Nov. 1 owners of off-road vehicles have to get them registered, or face big fines.

A new registration system for off-road vehicles became mandatory at the beginning of this month, so if you own a dirt bike, quad, snow mobile or a side-by-side, you are legally required to plate and insure the vehicle if you are riding it any other place than on private land.

Failure to do so will put you at risk of a $5,000 fine and impoundment of your vehicle.

“We’ve already seen a lot of clients in the branches but expect more before the deadline at the end of the month,” said Jodi Meldrum, a manager of insurance services with Island Savings in late October.

The new registration system, introduced by Ministry of Forests, Lands & Resources last November, is designed to catch rogue operators and joyriders who put others in danger. It will also cut down on theft and the re-sale value of stolen units.

“Any operator crossing the highway, riding on crown land, decommissioned and active logging roads or loading and unloading their units in a parking lot will fall under the new rules,” Meldrum said.

The combined cost of registration, plates and insurance decal is $96 plus taxes. Owners who purchased their vehicles prior to 2010 don’t have to pay the taxes.

Owners need to provide their insurance broker a new vehicle information statement or a certificate of origin, a bill of sale and a transfer/tax form signed by the seller. In addition, pre-owned units will also require a statutory declaration to determine the continuity of ownership, which needs to be notarized by Service BC.

“The members we see in the branches are ultimately relieved there will be stricter regulations to improve safety of both riders and property,” said Meldrum. “It may be a little red tape on the front end, but it doesn’t take long to get it done with the proper documentation.”

For more information on unit registration, visit or speak with a qualified insurance professional.


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