9.3 – California Vehicle Codes

The California Vehicle Code contains the laws and regulations governing the licensing process, the expiration and renewal of a driver license and the suspension and revocation of a driver license. Special certifications or endorsements are required to:

  • Operate a tow truck
  • Operate a farm labor vehicle
  • Transport hazardous materials
  • Drive fire fighting vehicles
  • Drive ambulances
  • Transport passengers
  • Drive a school or youth bus
  • Drive a commercial vehicle
  • Pull large trailers
  • Ride a motorcycle.

The California Vehicle Code specifies what types of trailers and vehicles can be towed, what types of vehicles are necessary for towing different trailers and vehicles and what licenses, certifications or endorsements are necessary to tow these trailers and vehicles.

The California Vehicle Code specifies the types of hazardous materials that can be transported, under what conditions and the licensing or certification of persons necessary for operating the vehicle.

The California Vehicle Code addresses:

  • The definition of words and phrases related to motor vehicles
  • Licensing and registration administration issues
  • Registration of vehicles and certificates of title
  • Registration and transfer of vessels
  • Vehicle sales
  • Special antitheft laws
  • Occupational and business regulations
  • Driver licenses
  • Motor vehicle transactions with minors
  • Financial responsibility laws
  • Civil liability
  • Accidents and accident reports
  • Rules of the road
  • Sentencing for driving under the influence
  • Vehicle equipment
  • Transportation of explosives
  • Hazardous materials, inhalation hazards and flammable materials
  • Safety regulations
  • Motor carriers of property
  • Motor vehicle damage control
  • The size, weight, and types of loads that may be transported
  • Implements of husbandry
  • Off- highway vehicles
  • Registration and licensing of bicycles
  • Offenses and prosecution
  • Penalties and disposition of fees, fines, and forfeitures

The California Vehicle Code provides for:

  • Pollution control (smog) check at the time of every second renewal of registration
  • The notification of DMV if an engine is changed
  • Rules regarding damaged or lost license plates
  • Collection of parking fines
  • The display of plates
  • Registration fees which vary with the type and weight of a vehicle
  • The collection of sales tax on change of ownership
  • Other regulations associated with vehicle registration and ownership
  • Regulations governing the advertisement of a vehicle for sale
  • Regulations concerning the consignment of a vehicle for sale
  • Regulations for private parties selling a vehicle involving the notification of DMV
  • A lemon law for California

The California Vehicle Code specifies the type of equipment, which must and must not be installed on a vehicle and the responsibilities of dealers and private parties in connection with types of equipment and their condition.

The California Vehicle Code specifies the width, height, weight and load characteristics of vehicles including the distance loads may protrude from a vehicle.

The California Vehicle Code defines misdemeanors and felonies that can arise in connection with improper driving and vehicle ownership including:

  • Parking citations
  • Transfer of vehicles
  • Equipment violations
  • Violations of the rules of the road
  • Improper licensing or certification

The California Vehicle Code addresses issues associated with the owner responsibilities, ownership and operation of off-the-road vehicles.

  • Keeping it properly registered
  • Maintaining insurance or other evidence of financial responsibility
  • Keeping it in good mechanical condition
  • Being sure those who drive it are properly licensed.

The California Vehicle Code also dictates:

  • That there is no cooling-off period once you have signed a contract for the purchase or lease of a vehicle, meaning that you cannot return the vehicle expecting a refund.
  • When you purchase a vehicle, you will receive a Certificate of Title, which is evidence of ownership and a Registration Card which shows that the vehicle is registered with the DMV.

Related Courses