Chapter 10 - Vehicle Licensing and Registration

Chapter 10 - Vehicle Licensing and Registration

22.1001 Motor vehicle registration and license required.

No motor vehicle may be operated on any highway in American Samoa without a valid registration and vehicle license tags as required by this chapter.

22.1002 Application for and issuance of license-Fees.

(a) Application for a motor vehicle license shall be made to the Commissioner on forms as the Commissioner may prescribe.

(b) No motor vehicle license may be issued without:

(1) payment of the prescribed motor vehicle license fee;

(2) presentation of a valid inspection certificate issued pursuant to 22.1201 et seq.;

(3) certification of insurance coverage as required by 22.2001 et seq., provided that such coverage will be effective for the period of the license;

(4) issuance of a valid motor vehicle registration.

(c) Upon satisfactory compliance with the provisions of this section the Commissioner shall issue 2 decals to the applicant which decals denominate the period for which registration is effective and are to be placed on the license tags.

(d) The following vehicle license registration fees are established:

(1) motor vehicle, including private vehicles, cargo vehicles, buses, motorcycles, taxis, trailers, tractors and rentals, $32.00; plus per ton of weight, $12.00;

(2) bicycle, $2.00;

(3) renewal for motor vehicle, $32.00;

(4) Legal Ownership Certificates and Titles, $10.00;

(5) Transfers, $10.00;

(6) Shipments, $10.00;

(7) Conversions, $12.00;

(8) Duplicate titles, $10.00;

(9) Late penalties, $9.00.

(e) For the purposes of subsection (d), the definitions in 22.0101 apply.

(f) The Commissioner shall issue 2 license tags to each applicant:

(1) registering a vehicle not registered in the Territory in the preceding 5 years; or

(2) whose tags have been lost or stolen, upon proof of same. The fee for replacing lost or stolen tags or plates shall be $22.00.

(g) For purposes of this section only, a total of $7.00 from each fee paid shall be placed in a revenue fund for the Department of Public Safety for law enforcement costs and maintenance and supplies for production of driver licenses and vehicle registrations.

22.1003 Display of license.

License tags shall be displayed only on the vehicle for which they were issued, and in the following manner:

(1) one firmly attached to the front and the other firmly attached to the rear of the vehicle at all times, which shall at all times be kept clean and plainly visible for a distance of 50 feet;

(2) the license tags shall be properly illuminated in accordance with subsection (e) of 22.1101.

22.1004 Expiration of license.

All motor vehicle licenses issued under this chapter expire annually at times as designated by the Commissioner by rules in the interest of public safety. The Commissioner may allow up to 30 days’ grace period to obtain vehicle inspection certificates.

22.1005 Exemptions.

The following motor vehicles are exempt from the provisions of this chapter:

(1) motor vehicles owned and operated by the Government of American Samoa or the Government of the United States;

(2) motor vehicles validly licensed in any state, except that they are exempt only for a period not to exceed the expiration date of such license or the period specified in 22.1004, whichever comes first, and except that such vehicles must comply with the requirements of paragraphs (b) (2) through (b) (4) of 22.1002, pertaining to inspection, insurance and registration, before such vehicle may be operated on any highway in American Samoa;

(3) motor vehicles owned by or in custody of licensed dealers or importers, while being transported from the point of entry to American Samoa to the premises of the dealer or importer;

(4) motor vehicles being operated to or from vehicle inspection stations for the purposes of obtaining a motor vehicle license as required by this chapter, except that such vehicles must comply with the requirements of paragraph (b)(3) of 22.1002, pertaining to insurance, before such vehicle may be operated on any highway in American Samoa.

(5) Notwithstanding subsection (1), all vehicles owned or operated by the American Samoa Government must be identified with the appropriate government branch or department tags.

22.1006 Offenses.

(a) A person who, with fraudulent intent, does any of the following, is guilty of a class D felony:

(1) alters, forges or counterfeits a registration card, motor vehicle license application, license tag or insurance or inspection certificate;

(2) has possession of or uses a registration card, motor vehicle license application or license tag, or insurance or inspection certificate, knowing it to have been altered, forged or counterfeited;

(3) uses a false or fictitious name or address, makes a material false statement, or fails to disclose or conceal any material fact in an application for registration, motor vehicle license or insurance or inspection certificate.

(b) A person is guilty of a class B misdemeanor who:

(1) with fraudulent intent, permits another, not entitled thereto, to use or have possession of a registration card or license tag;

(2) commits a fraud in any application for a registration, motor vehicle license or insurance or inspection certificate;

(3) attaches to and uses on any vehicle plates, tags, or emblems not furnished in accordance with the law;

(4) fraudulently uses vehicle plates, tags, or emblems upon any vehicle other than the one to which the number, plates, tags or emblems were issued;

(5) violates any other provision of this chapter.

22.1007 Vehicles of servicemen.

(a) A person who is an active member of the United States military services in a jurisdiction that allows the serviceman to operate a motor vehicle with a foreign registration and license plates, may apply for and receive by mail a registration certificate and license plates or tags from the Commissioner.

(b) The Commissioner shall adopt administrative rules pursuant to 4.1001 et seq., to implement this section.