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CA Number

A CA number refers to a unique identifier assigned to a commercial vehicle by the CHP when it is registered with the Motor Carrier Permit (MCP) program.


The MCP program is a regulatory program administered by the CHP that requires certain commercial vehicles operating in California to obtain a permit and comply with various safety regulations. As part of the MCP program, the CHP assigns each registered commercial vehicle a CA number, which is displayed on the vehicle in a specific format.


The CA number is used by the CHP and other law enforcement agencies to identify commercial vehicles and enforce safety regulations. It can also be used by the public to report safety concerns related to commercial vehicles to the CHP.


If you are a commercial vehicle operator in California, you will need to obtain an MCP and a CA number in order to legally operate your vehicle in the state. The process for obtaining an MCP and CA number involves completing an application, providing required documentation, and meeting certain safety and insurance requirements.

DOT Number - CA Number - MCP Number - EPN

ca number

What’s the difference?

  • DOT Number: A DOT number is a unique identification number issued by the US Department of Transportation (DOT) to commercial motor carriers and certain other organizations engaged in interstate commerce. The DOT number serves as a way to track a company’s safety record, compliance with regulations, and accountability for any accidents or incidents that may occur.
  • CA number: Refers to a unique identifier assigned to a commercial vehicle by the CHP when it is registered with the Motor Carrier Permit (MCP) program.
  • MCP: A motor carrier permit, is a legal document required by the California Department of Motor Vehicles for commercial vehicles operating within the state. It authorizes carriers to transport property for compensation or hire and ensures compliance with state regulations.
  • EPN: An Employer Pull Notice (EPN) is a program established by the California Department of Motor Vehicles (DMV) that allows employers to monitor the driving records of their employees who operate company vehicles. Under the EPN program, the DMV provides automated notifications to the employer regarding any changes or updates to an employee’s driving record, such as license suspensions or revocations.

These are all requested separately, in sequence, but are all interconnected. You cannot get a CA number without a DOT, you cannot get a MCP without a CA.

Display Requirements for CA Numbers

For the most part, it is required to display your CA number (MCP permit number) on both sides of your truck. 

Frequently Asked Questions About CA Numbers

How much does it cost to get a CA Number?

$0 - the CHP does not charge to get this number

Can I just get a CA number and not get an MCP?

The short answer is NO. Many people got away with this before - because the CA number and the MCP are the same number - many people flew under the radar and avoided getting the MCP. The CA number is free, however, the MCP is not.

How long does it take to get a CA number issued?

The CA number is issued by your local CHP office - do not try to send your application to an office outside of your area. That being said, the speed in which they issue this number will depend on each individual office. Sometimes it can get issued same day, and sometimes it will take 2 weeks.

What do I need to get a CA Number?

You must first obtain a DOT number. Furthermore, you must have all of your information available, so your corporation must be formed already, and you must have an EIN number.

Additional Questions Regarding CA Number

permanent fleet registration questions

Contact our team @ 951-409-9091 or email us at leads@quickautotags.com or complete the form below.

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