Everything You Need to Know About Trailer and Small Carriage Laws

When the trunk of the car becomes too small, a practical solution is to use trailers. However, what many people don’t know is that there are laws governing the use of trailers and carriages, regulating their use in traffic.

Understanding the laws that govern the use of these devices is essential to avoid fines and complications.

This is because, when attaching a trailer, our passenger vehicle is considered a larger vehicle. In other words, it becomes subject to specific regulations.

Therefore, before using one of these devices, familiarize yourself with everything you need to know about the laws for trailers and carriages!

The essentials about trailers and carriages

The first important point about this subject, as mentioned earlier, is that the law for trailers and carriages requires a regular vehicle to comply with regulations for larger vehicles.

Additionally, it’s crucial to be careful with the proper choice of trailers. Consumers should consider not only the volume, dimensions, and the possibility of attaching trailer boxes but also the type of hitch used.

Many drivers face traffic fines due to the use of hitches that do not comply with established regulations.

Therefore, to avoid unpleasant surprises and ensure compliance with production standards, it’s essential to choose equipment that has INMETRO licenses.

Furthermore, by selecting equipment with INMETRO licenses, you not only avoid fines but also ensure that the equipment is safe and reliable for use.

The law for trailers and small trailers.

Let’s talk a bit about what the legislation states regarding the use of these devices.

Traffic laws concerning trailers and small trailers are subject to frequent changes.

For example, in 2022, CONTRAN introduced the requirement for the manufacturer’s registration in INMETRO, as stipulated in Resolution 937. This resolution also sets specific requirements for trailer hitches on light vehicles weighing up to 3.5 tons.

A crucial aspect is the need to tow trailers, meaning the vehicle must demonstrate its ability to move and support them, with this capacity declared by the manufacturer.

Resolution 937 also mandates that the hitch must have its own tamper-evident plate containing information about the type of vehicle it is intended for, its maximum towing capacity, and a reference to the resolution itself.

Manufacturer information, such as the CNPJ (National Register of Legal Entities), must also be included on the plate, allowing verification of the registration in INMETRO and the CMT (Maximum Towed Mass) of the hitch. Trailers and small trailers that do not meet these specifications cannot be used in traffic.

Trailers and small carts are different from vehicles?

Although many people consider trailers and small carts as “non-vehicles” due to the lack of an engine, the law classifies them as motor vehicles.

In other words, they need to be registered with their own license plates, following Article 120 of the Brazilian Traffic Code (CTB).

The registration is done at the state traffic authority, in the municipality of the owner’s domicile or residence, and results in the issuance of the Vehicle Registration Certificate (CRV), with specifications and models established by CONTRAN.

Trailers and small carts must be equipped with bumpers, mudguards, taillights, turn signals, reflective signaling stripes, parking brakes, and their own documentation.

You can also attach a trailer box, which functions as a larger-scale motorcycle box. It is ideal for those who work with their trailer and need to transport items.

As for the driver’s license, a category B driver’s license is required, provided that the gross weight of the vehicle with the trailer does not exceed 3,500kg. Otherwise, the driver must have a category C license.

The only mandatory fee for trailers and small carts is the licensing fee, and having a spare tire is optional for the driver.

It is also important to observe the allowed dimensions for small carts: a maximum width of 2.6 meters, height of 4.4 meters, length between the vehicle and trailer of 19.8 meters, and a rear overhang of 3.5 meters.

How to register a trailer?

According to the law, trailers and tow dollies need to be registered like any other vehicle. In this regard, to register it, follow these steps:

  1. Have the invoice provided by the manufacturer or dealer, or an equivalent document issued by the competent authority, on hand (original and copy).
  2. Present personal identification documents and CPF (original and copy).
  3. Provide a proof of address from the last 3 months (original and copy).
  4. Bring the chassis number imprint (original).
  5. Present a proof of payment for debts, including taxes, fines, and charges (original and copy).
  6. Fill out two original copies of the Renavam Form.

With these documents in hand, you can assign the vehicle’s license plate number, issue and pay for the licensing, schedule the vehicle registration, and collect the Vehicle Certificate of Registration (CRV) and the Vehicle License Certificate (CRLV) for the trailer.

It’s important to note that the deadline to complete these procedures is within 30 days from the issuance of the invoice.

Traffic without complications

Brazil has an extensive and detailed traffic legislation. Therefore, knowing the characteristics of the law regarding trailers and tow dollies is essential to ensure your safety and peace of mind.

By following these guidelines and complying with the regulations, you can use trailers and tow dollies within the current laws.

In this way, you avoid fines and ensure that your transportation activities comply with the established rules of Brazilian traffic laws.