It was a pleasure to answer your question. Let me come to the point
without irrelevant discussion.
Your question is comprised of two parts.
1) Can your client choose either state to license the car in?
2) Which state is cheaper when it comes to vehicle owner tax
Your clarificaion suggests that the owner of the vehicle has an
international driving license and that the client is not a US state
The answer to your first question is Yes. He can choose either state
Actually, A US citizen or a resident alien is required to register the
car based on the resident status i.e. A resident of Florida must
register his car with DMV Florida. Same holds true for a Colorado
resident who will have to register with DMV Colorado.
So what about a foriegn resident. Well! a foriegn resident is usually
encouraged to register a vehicle in the state where his permanent
address for the duration of visit is expected. For example a worker
with an H-1 visa (working visa) will be encouraged to register a
vehicle in a state where he is working. An F-1 (student visa) is
encouraged to register in a state where he is studying and a B-1 Visa
(Business Visa) will be encouraged to register in the state where he
is conducting business.
So what about a visitor who is on a visitor visa? Well! he can
register in any state but it is encouraged that he registers in a
state where he can claim a presence. In your client's case, since he
has homes in Florida and Colorado, he can register in any of those
states because the ownership of his home provides a proof of his
address where he may be contacted by the INS (new name-BCIS) in case
of a question or an emergency. That is precisely why holders of other
visas are encouraged to register vehicle on their respective state of
It is highly recommended that your client register in the state where
most business or personal activity takes place. If he travels to and
fro and doesn't stay in a state for a considerable period, than he may
register in any of the states.
I will suggest, if he plans to reside in US for a long duration than a
state with a longer period of stay is prefered. Although, it is
certainly not a requirement in any way. (emphasis on 'NOT REQUIRED')
Your second question is regarding the state vehicle owner tax. Well!
the tax in Colorado is less than Florida. Also, the tax in Colorado
differes from county to county but there is a very minor or no
difference at all. For a comparison of Florida Tax and Colorado county
Tax for a vehicle, please click on the following links:
COLORADO ADAM's AND BOULDRE COUNTIES
But again, your client might be more concerned about the insurance fee
of the vehicle rather than the vehicle registration fee. As your
client might know that it is compulsary in the US to have a vehicle
insurance policy that can differ greatly from state to state.
IMPORTANT ! Both the Florida and Colorado states require that the
vehicle owner must have the individual state insurance policy i.e. for
a vehicle that is registered in Florida, it must have a Florida motor
vehicle insurance policy. Same holds true for Colorado.
I appologise for the remarks but it is a fact that people in the US
are more concerned about the state vehicle insurance rather than
Registration fee because insurance costs lot more than the
registration. Also, registration fee isn't that high (in any of the
Don't forget to visit the respective Motor Vehicle Departments of each
states for furhter answers.
I will also suggest you to contact these departments by phone.
Although, there lines are busy but you will get a representative after
It, by no means suggests that I am not available to answer your
questions. Please feel free to clarify, if you are not satisfied. And
after all, I personally welcome any comments from a foriegn citizen
who needs my help in the United States. Good luck to your client and
thanks for using Google Answers.