New laws for Oregon drivers take effect in 2018

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Dec. 13, 2017
ODOT News Release No. 17-127
News media contact: David House, 503-945-5270,
Customer contact:

New laws for Oregon drivers take effect in 2018

Crash reporting requirements are among changes

In addition to passing a major transportation funding package, the 2017 Oregon Legislature passed a handful of other laws that will affect drivers and vehicle owners. Most will take effect Jan. 1, 2018.

Crash reporting
As of Jan. 1, you will not need to report a fender bender if the damage is under $2,500. This is an increase from the $1,500 threshold that had been in place since 2004.
Senate Bill 35 is raising the threshold to reflect the increase in cost to repair vehicles. In recent years, many reports submitted to DMV because of the $1,500 threshold have been for minor crashes, consuming staff time that would be better used for focusing on more serious incidents.
ODOT uses crash data to make informed decisions on how to prioritize engineering the safety of highway and road facilities, and to help provide focus for traffic enforcement resources. Raising the threshold helps focus crash data on incidents that involve fatalities, injuries and serious property damage.
You must report a vehicle crash to DMV within 72 hours if:
* Damage to any vehicle is over $2,500 ($1,500 through Dec. 31, 2017);
* Any vehicle is towed from the scene;
* Injury or death resulted from this incident; or
* Damages to property other than a vehicle involved in the crash is more than $2,500 ($1,500 through Dec. 31, 2017).

Registration card privacy
Senate Bill 930 allows the owner of a vehicle to black out or obscure the residence address, business address, mailing address or vehicle address shown on the registration card and on proof of insurance or other current proof of compliance carried in the vehicle.

Hardship permits
Senate Bill 252 allows a person with a hardship permit to apply to drive for the purposes of participating in gambling addiction treatment. This bill applies to hardship permits issued on or after Jan. 1, 2018.

Three-wheel vehicle driver testing
As of Jan. 1, a licensed Oregon driver will not need to take a drive test to receive an endorsement on their license to drive some three-wheeled motorcycles.
Under Senate Bill 36, this change applies only to three-wheeled vehicles that operate much like a four-wheeled car. The vehicles affected may be defined as motorcycles under Oregon law but are operated more like a car than a motorcycle – with a steering wheel instead of handlebars, for example.

Ex-POW vehicle plates
House Bill 2149 changes the registration for Ex-POW vehicle plates to permanent registration. New applicants for Ex-POW registration will pay a one-time registration fee of $15, plus the plate manufacturing fee. Persons who have current Ex-POW registration as of Jan. 1, 2018, will not be required to pay a renewal fee.

Crater Lake plate surcharge
House Bill 2922 increases the surcharge for Crater Lake license plates from $10 per plate to $15 per plate as of Jan. 1, 2018. The Crater Lake fee supports the Oregon Community Foundation for use on projects at Crater Lake National Park.

Any time you need to visit a DMV office, first check to find office hours, locations, and current wait times at our larger offices. You also can do some DMV business from home – renew your vehicle registration, file a change of address, or file notice of the sale of your vehicle online without getting in line at an office.