Difference Between DMV and RMV

In almost every country worldwide, it is compulsory to register for a motor vehicle and driver’s license for legal purposes.


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________ is an unconscious ignorance or forgetfulness of the existence or non-existence of a fact, past pr present, material to the contract.

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What type of law governs the regulation of trade and commerce?

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A promise made without intention to perform is

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A sells, by auction, to B a horse that A knows to be unsound. A says nothing to B about the horse's unsoundness. A does

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_______ is a rule of conduct, just, obligatory, and laid down by a legitimate power.

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What is not included in the expression 'court' under Evidence Act?

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What is meant by the term "penalty" in law?

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What is the role of the police in law enforcement?

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DMV and RMV are used in the United States and in some other countries as well to administer the registration and other issues related to the procedure and renewal of the motor vehicle and driver’s license.


The difference between DMV and RMV is that DMV is a quite popular term which is used worldwide and major responsibilities of this government agency include tackling related to driver license and renewals in the various states of the United States. On the other hand, RMV is a government agency that is involved in the registration process of driver and motor vehicle license and specifically administered in the state of Massachusetts only.


DMV stands for ‘Department of Motor Vehicle. The primary work of this agency is handling and administering the vehicle registration and issues associated with it.

Although states of the United States have different names for this agency. In some parts, it is regulated as a private agency as well.

RMV stands for “Registry of Motor Vehicle’. As the name suggests, this agency is regulating the driver’s license and motor vehicle registration processes.

Now the agency is operated by the Massachusetts Department of Transportation, and it is responsible for performing the functions and responsibilities of RMV.

Comparison Table

Parameters of ComparisonDMVRMV
Stands forDMV stands for Department of Motor VehicleRMV stands for Registry of Motor Vehicle
WorkingDMV administered the registration of the motor vehicle and driver license, and this term is quite common in various states of United States and operated with this name onlyRMV is also concerned with the registration process of the motor vehicle and driver’s license, but it is operated only in Massachusetts.
OperationThe term ‘DMV’ is used in different United States states for their official transport registration agency.RMV is regulated and administered by the Massachusetts department of transportation only.
AreasDMV was administered in Virginia, California, Nevada, New York, and many more.It is operated in the state of Massachusetts only.
Other nameMVD, MDS, MVC, etc., are other names of DMV in different states.RMS is also called as Massachusetts Registry of Motor Vehicle.

What is DMV?

DMV stands for ‘Department of Motor vehicle’. As the name suggests, this department or agency is formed to deal with motor vehicle and driver license.

In the United States, DMV is administered as a government agency that works on various issues associated with driver and vehicle licenses. 

There is a wide range of responsibilities that are administered by this agency, and this includes

  1. Issuing the driver manuals so that the driver should be aware of the rules while giving their driver’s license test. 
  2. This agency is also responsible for providing registration plates to the vehicle, either permanent or temporary.
  3. Vehicle ownership is also handled by the department of motor vehicles.

Registering the motor vehicle and issuing the driver’s license is being done in various countries as well, and they also have their registration offices and agency. The name could be the difference, but the roles and responsibilities are quite similar.

All of them deal with providing valid identity to the vehicle and driver. Motor vehicle commission (MVC), motor vehicle division (MVD), Division of motor vehicle, Motor vehicle Bureau (MVB) are the other name of DMV in different states of United States.

What is RMV?

RMV stands for ‘Registry of motor vehicle’, and this agency is also concerned with the registration procedure of the vehicle and driver’s license.

In the United States, every state has its regulating authority or government agency that administers the same responsibilities, but they have different names. 

For instance, RMV is the department or the government agency which is related to registration of the motor vehicle and driver license by it is administered and regulated by the Massachusetts department of transportation, and due to this reason, this term ‘RMV’ is used in the state of Massachusetts and also called Massachusetts registry of motor vehicles.

All the responsibilities associated with this agency are related to the motor vehicle and driver’s license. Some of them are described below:

  1. RMV is responsible for providing a valid driver’s license.
  2. It can also issue special license plates based on medical affairs for people with disabilities.
  3. Commercial driver licenses are also issued by the registry of motor vehicles.

Main Differences Between DMV and RMV

  1. In the United States, DMV and RMV, both of these terms are used for the agency that administered the registration of motor vehicle and driver license. The Department of Motor Vehicle (DMV) is quite popular in various states of the United States, but the RMV is administered only in the state of Massachusetts.
  2. The term ‘DMV’ stands for the Department of the motor vehicle, and on the contrary, ‘RMV’ stands for Registry of the motor vehicle. The agency regulated by these terms has quite similar responsibilities and operations.
  3. Different states called DMV with different names like Motor vehicle bureau (MVB), Driver service program (DSP), Motor vehicle division (MVD), etc. The other name for RMV is the Massachusetts Registry of a motor vehicle.
  4. DMV is administered as Department of motor vehicles (DMV) only in various states, including Virginia, Nevada, California, New York, Vermont, Texas, and more. On the other hand, the Registry of motor vehicle (RMV) is operated in only one state, Massachusetts.
  5. The functioning of DMV may vary from one state to another, or it may be situated differently in different states, and it depends on the state government structure while the RMV was previously considered as a state entity but now operated by the Massachusetts department of transportation.


  1. https://www.tandfonline.com/doi/abs/10.1080/02664768600000021
  2. https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0043135400003365
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