License Plates

New Hampshire

The DMV shall design and issue to every person whose vehicle is registered a license plate or plates.

Every vehicle driven on any road, if required to be registered, shall have one or more reflectorized number plates displayed with any current validation sticker issued by the DMV or an authorized agent.

Registration plates for passenger vehicles shall display the state motto “Live Free or Die.”  Plates are required to be kept clean.

Special license plates or hanging placards for disabled drivers are available by application to DMV. Letter from physician attesting to disability and possession of New Hampshire driver’s license or non-driver ID is required.  All applicants must prove residency.


New Hampshire

The new owner of a vehicle may be issued the same registration number as previously given to the vehicle if the owner applies to the DMV or municipal agent for registration and submits a written statement indicating the release of the plates to the new owner regardless of the plate type.

The owner of a vehicle may transfer the registration number between vehicles if the owner registers the new vehicle and is the primary owner on the registration.


New Jersey

Issuance of license plates may be denied without presentation of a certificate of ownership.

Two plates are issued.

The color scheme for license plates is black on goldfinch & pale yellow.

Special license plates and windshield placards for disabled drivers are available at no fee by application to the MVC.


New Jersey

License plates may be transferred to another vehicle owned by the same person.


New Mexico

One reflectorized plate must be attached to the rear of the vehicle not less than 12 inches from the ground.

After the initial registration, license plates are validated by a sticker when the required registration renewal fees have been paid.

The color scheme for license plates is red on yellow

Disabled license plate available by submitting application, accompanied by medical statement from licensed physician attesting to disability to Vehicle Services Bureau. Disabled placards movable from vehicle to vehicle are also available at local field offices with appropriate medical form completed by physician.


New Mexico

The owner must remove the registration plate from the vehicle within 30 days from the date of the transfer and forward the registration plates to the MVD to be destroyed, or the owner may apply to have the plate and registration number assigned to another vehicle upon payment of all applicable fees. All foreign plates must be delivered to the MVD.


New York

Upon registration, the DMV will issue 2 reflectorized, numbered plates to the owner of any motor vehicle and 1 numbered plate to the owner of any trailer or motorcycle. The plates shall have a distinct number that corresponds with the registration number on the registration certificate.

The plates shall be securely fastened on the vehicle, 1 on the front and 1 on the rear, at a height not more than 48 inches and not less than 12 inches from the ground.

The plates shall be kept in a clean condition so as to be easily readable and shall not be covered by glass or any plastic material.

The DMV shall assign to such motor vehicle used for transporting persons with disabilities distinctive numbered plates, called disabled person plates.

The DMV may issue special number plates to applicants in the same manner that regular plates are issued but with the payment of an increased fee.

Numerous distinctive license plates are available. Please check with the DMV or online at dmv.ny.gov to view the selection of plates available.

Disabled license plates available upon application to DMV. Doctor’s statement attesting to disability must accompany application.

The color scheme for license plates is white, blue on white, or blue on gold.

Plates are validated by windshield sticker.


New York

When a vehicle is sold, the owner must remove the license plates from the vehicle.

The owner, however, may register another vehicle and use the plates previously issued to him for another vehicle, after registering the new vehicle and paying the applicable transfer of tags fee.

Special number plates assigned to a vehicle may, in the discretion of the DMV be transferred to any person 1 year after the expiration date of the registration, or to any person within 1 year after the expiration date of the registration with the permission of the prior registrant or his estate.

Disabled license plates available upon application to the DMV. Doctor’s statement attesting to disability must accompany application.


North Carolina

Upon registration, the DMV shall issue 1 reflectorized registration plate for a motorcycle, trailer, semitrailer, and every other motor vehicle.

Every license plate shall have the registration number assigned to the vehicle, the name of the state of North Carolina, and year number for which it is issued or for the expiration date.

The color scheme for license plates is red and blue on white.

License plates are validated by stickers.

Commercial plates must also bear the word “commercial,” unless it is a trailer or is licensed for 6,000 lbs. or less.

Vehicle owners may pay a prorated fee for license plates issued for less than a year. If the plate is issued between April 1 and June 30, the owner will pay 75% of the fee. Between July 1 and September 30, he or she owes 50% of the fee, and from October 1 to December 31, 25% of the fee.

Handicapped plates are available at DMV branch offices throughout the state.


North Carolina

License plates shall be retained by the owner following the transfer of a vehicle. They may be assigned to another vehicle in the same vehicle class belonging to the owner, upon proper application to the DMV and payment of a transfer fee and any additional fees that may be due because the new vehicle has a greater registration fee. Owner may use the plates on the other vehicle for no more than 20 days while in the process of completing the transfer.

The vehicle for which the plate is being transferred to must have a current inspection before the plate can be transferred.

If the new vehicle is of a different vehicle class, the owner shall return the plates to the DMV.


North Dakota

Two reflectorized number plates are issued by the DOT for each registered motor vehicle, and 1 number plate for each registered motorcycle, trailer, or housetrailer.

License plates that are marked to indicate the mobility impaired are available without additional charge upon application and payment of the regular license fee.

The color scheme for license plates is black on blue and gold.

Personalized plates with not more than 7 numerals, letters, ampersands, or combination thereof are available upon application. Personalized motorcycle plates may not contain more than 6 characters.

An annual registration tab or sticker for the current registration year must be displayed on each plate.

License plates are issued upon payment of registration fees.

Mobility impaired placard or license plates are issued by the Motor Vehicle Division upon completion of Form SFN 2886.


North Dakota

License plates must be retained by the owner and may be transferred to a replacement motor vehicle.


Ohio

Plates must be displayed on both the front and the rear for all motor vehicles, and on the rear only for motorcycles and trailers. All license plates shall be securely fastened so as not to swing, and shall not be covered by any material that obstructs their visibility.

The color scheme for license plates is red with sunburst in white and blue background

License plates are validated by a sticker.

Disability license plates or disability parking placards are available by application with documentation of disability and prescription for disability placard from physician or chiropractor to BMV or local deputy registrars.


Ohio

Upon the transfer of ownership of a motor vehicle, the registration of the motor vehicle expires and the original owner immediately shall remove the license plates from the motor vehicle, except that if the original owner or surviving spouse of the owner of a motor vehicle that has been transferred makes application for the registration of another motor vehicle at any time during the remainder of the registration period for which the transferred motor vehicle was registered, the owner may file an application for transfer of the registration and, where applicable, the license plates. This application must be made within 30 days of the transfer.


Oklahoma

The license plate shall be affixed to the rear of the vehicle.

The yearly decal will validate the license plate for each registration period.

The license plate and decal shall be of such size, color, design, and numbering as the Tax Commission directs. Each license plate shall have a space for the placement of the yearly decals.

Temporary license plates placed on newly purchased vehicles are valid for up to 30 days.

Personalized license plates will be issued with a maximum of 7 letters or numbers, or a combination of 4 letters and 3 numbers. No punctuation marks or symbols are allowed.

Personalized license plates for motorcycles will be issued with a maximum of 6 letters or numbers, or a combination of 4 letters and 2 numbers.

Disabled license plates issued upon application to Oklahoma Tax Commission – no additional charge.


Oklahoma

The holder of a license plate may transfer that plate to a new vehicle, unless it is to a new vehicle owner.

The vehicle owner, after transferring the plate from 1 vehicle to the next, must also obtain a replacement plate for the 1st vehicle by payment of an additional fee. If the new vehicle was previously registered, the owner shall return the plate from the new vehicle and place the replacement plate on the old vehicle.

A registration listing the tag as being transferred will be issued, along with a new decal showing the expiration of the registration, following the payment of all required fees.


Oregon

Upon filing of an application for registration and payment of the appropriate fees, the DMV will issue 1 license plate for a moped, motorcycle, travel trailer, camper, antique vehicle, or vehicle of special interest. Two reflectorized license plates are issued for all other vehicles.

In lieu of new plates, the DMV issues stickers upon renewal of registration.

Special plates are available for special groups and vehicles including veterans’ organizations, institutions of higher education, nonprofit groups, amateur radio operators and special vehicles. Personalized plates are also available.

Disabled person parking placards issued upon application to DMV, with certification by licensed physician attesting to permanent or temporary disability.

License plates have a graphic background.


Oregon

In some circumstances, plates may be transferred to another vehicle upon completion of an application for transfer of plates and payment of the appropriate fee.


Pennsylvania

PennDOT will issue 1 registration plate when a car is registered in Pennsylvania.

Registration plates and motorcycle decals are available to persons with disabilities and severely disabled veterans by application to the Bureau by completing Form MV145 or Form MV145V for veterans with a reduced fee of $11.00. Notarization is required.

No fee required for severely disabled veterans motorcycle decal.

Disabled parking placards are available by application to the Bureau of Motor Vehicles. No fee is required. Notarization and Form MV145A.

The color scheme for registration plates is blue, white, and yellow, with blue letters and numbers.

It is unlawful to display on any vehicle a registration plate which is otherwise illegible at a reasonable distance or is obscured in any manner.


Pennsylvania

Registration and registration plates can be transferred to another vehicle owned or leased by the registrant, or to a vehicle owned or leased by the spouse, parent, or child of the registrant.

If the transfer is within the same vehicle type, the transferee can keep the previously issued registration and registration plate, unless lost, stolen, or destroyed.

If the transfer is not within the same vehicle type, the transferee must return the registration  plate to PennDOT.

In order to transfer the registration plate, the transferee must apply for a temporary vehicle registration card and a transfer of registration.


Rhode Island

Plates are provided upon vehicle registration, 1 fully reflective plate for each motorcycle or trailer and 2 fully reflective plates for every other motor vehicle.

A temporary plate may be issued that allows the operation of a vehicle on the public highways for a period of 5 days from the date of issue.

On a motor vehicle, plates must be attached 1 in the front and 1 in the rear. On a motorcycle or trailer, plates must be attached at the rear of the vehicle.

Handicapped parking placards or stickers may be issued upon application and proof of a disability. The placard or sticker shall be renewed every 3 years for individuals with a long-term or permanent disability.

The color scheme for license plates is grey-blue on off white.

License plates are validated by stickers.


Rhode Island

Plates, along with registration, may be transferred to a new vehicle as long as the name on the registration remains the same.  After the transfer is done, the number of days the plates can be used prior to registration is as follows:

  • In-State Dealer: 20 calendar days from date on bill of sale
  • Out-of-State Dealer: 72 hours from date on bill of sale
  • Private Party: 48 hours from date on bill of sale

If plates are not transferred to another vehicle after selling a vehicle the plates must be forwarded to the Division.


South Carolina

The Department upon registering and licensing a vehicle must issue to the owner 1 license plate. This license plate must be attached to the outside rear of the vehicle, except that on truck tractors and road tractors the license plate must be attached to the outside front of the vehicle. New replacement plates are issued every 10 years.

License plates are revalidated by stickers.

The license plate color scheme is blue, orange and white with black characters.

A disabled license plate or placard is available from DMV by completion of RG-007. $1 fee for each placard. Only one placard may be issued to each applicant.


South Carolina

Whenever the owner of a registered and licensed vehicle transfers his or her ownership, he or she must immediately notify the Department in writing, giving the name and address of the new owner and the date of transfer. The license plate issued for the vehicle must remain with the prior owner. Within 30 days of the transfer, the prior owner must either apply to transfer the plates to another vehicle or return the plates to the Department. In either event, the registration card must be concurrently returned to the Department.

The Department, upon application and payment of a fee, must transfer the license plate previously assigned to an owner or lessee for 1 vehicle to another vehicle of the same general type owned or leased by the same person.

If the transferred plate is within three months of expiring, the plate should be renewed before transferring.


South Dakota

Once a vehicle has been properly registered, the county treasurer will issue the vehicle’s owner reflectorized 2 license plates to be placed on the front and rear of the vehicle. The county treasurer will mail the license plates to an applicant upon request if that applicant pays the appropriate fees. Motorcycles are only required to display one plate.

Disabled license plates available upon application to the department.

The color scheme for license plates is red, white and blue on white background.

License plates are validated by a sticker.


South Dakota

Upon sale or transfer of a vehicle the plates shall remain with the owner and may be transferred to another like vehicle, upon approval by the Department.


Tennessee

The county clerk issues 1 reflectorized plate per motor vehicle upon successful application for registration.

The license plate issued for passenger cars, including trucks with a manufacturer’s ton rating not exceeding 1/2 ton and having a pickup body style, motorcycles, trailers, and also those issued for motor homes, must be attached to the rear of the vehicle. License plates issued for all other vehicles must be attached to the front of the vehicle.

The color scheme for license plates is black on white.

License plates are validated with stickers.

Disabled license plates are available by application through the county clerk’s office with physician’s statement attesting to disability. Placards are available through county clerk or Department of Safety.

No tinted materials may be placed over a license plate even if the information on the license plate is not concealed.  On motor vehicles factory-equipped to illuminate license plates, the plates must be illuminated at all times that headlights are on.


Tennessee

Whenever the owner of a vehicle transfers the vehicle, the registration expires and the plates must be removed from the vehicle.

The transferor of a vehicle may apply for reassignment of the plates to another vehicle owned by the transferor.

If the transferor of a vehicle applies for registration reassignment to a new vehicle of a different weight or classification which requires payment of a higher fee, the applicant must surrender both the certificate of registration and the plate or plates to the county clerk.


Texas

Two license plates are issued for a 5-year period. Validation stickers are issued each year after the 1st year when a license plate or set of plates was issued.

The validation stickers must be attached to the inside of the vehicle’s windshield within 6 inches of the place where the motor vehicle inspection sticker is required to be placed. If the vehicle does not have a windshield, the DMV will issue a sticker for attachment to the rear license plate.

Numerous specialty license plates are available.

Permanently disabled drivers have the option of applying for specially designated plates or placards designed to hang from the rearview mirror. An applicant may receive 2 disabled person plates or 1 placard and/or 1 set of plates. An additional set of plates may be obtained for specially equipped vehicles for persons who have lost the use of 1 or both legs.

The license plate color scheme is red and blue on white.


Texas

License plates may not be transferred to another owner.


Utah

The DMV upon registering a vehicle shall issue to the owner 1 license plate for a motorcycle, trailer, or semitrailer and 2 identical reflectorized license plates for every other vehicle. Each license plate shall have displayed on it: the registration number assigned to the vehicle for which it is issued; the name of the state; a designation of the county in which the vehicle is registered; and a registration decal showing the date of expiration.

Each original license plate that is not a special issuance plate shall be a statehood centennial license plate or a “Ski Utah” license plate. The color scheme for license plates is blue on orange and blue.

A person who is the registered owner of a vehicle may, upon payment of a fee, apply to the DMV for personalized license plates.

The owner of a motor vehicle that is a model year 1973 or older may apply to the DMV for permission to display an original issue license plate of a format and type issued by the state in the same year as the model year of the vehicle.

Every license plate shall at all times be securely fastened in a horizontal position at a height not less than 12 inches from the ground and maintained free from foreign materials and clearly legible from a distance of at least 100 feet during daylight. License plates may be reasonably obscured by a trailer hitch, a wheelchair lift or wheelchair carrier, a trailer being towed by the vehicle, a bicycle rack, ski rack, or luggage rack, or a similar cargo carrying device.

Disabled plates and placards are available by application to Customer Service Division. Affidavit by owner and disability certification by physician are required to accompany application.


Utah

If the owner of a registered vehicle transfers his title or interest to the vehicle, the vehicle registration expires. The owner shall remove the license plates from the transferred vehicle. Within 20 days from the date of transfer the owner shall forward the plates to the DMV to be destroyed or may have the plates and the registration number assigned to another vehicle.


Vermont

The DMV shall issue to each motor vehicle a distinctive number that shall be displayed on plates.

All number plates shall be the property of the state.

A motor vehicle operated on any highway in this state shall have displayed in a conspicuous and un-obscured place either 1 or 2 plates. If 1 plate is issued, the plate shall be attached securely to the rear of the vehicle. If 2 plates are furnished, 1 shall be secured to the rear and 1 shall be secured to the front of the vehicle.

A person shall not operate a motor vehicle unless number plates and a validation sticker are displayed. A registration validation sticker shall be unobstructed.  For vehicles issued registration plates with dimensions of approximately 12 × 6 inches, in the lower right corner of the rear registration plate; and for vehicles issued a registration plate with a dimension of approximately 7 × 4 inches, in the upper right corner of the rear registration plate.

Specialized plates are available.

Disabled cards and license plates are available by application to DMV.

The color scheme for license plates is white on green.


Vermont

Upon the transfer of ownership of a vehicle, the registration number plates may be attached to another vehicle that is being leased or purchased by the registrant for a period greater than 30 days.

Upon the termination of a lease of a vehicle, the registration number plates may be attached to another vehicle that is owned, being leased, or being purchased by the lessee. Full registration fees are due.

Plates do not have to be turned back into the DMV when the registration is cancelled following total loss of the vehicle if the registration will not be used again.


Virginia

Two reflectorized plates must be attached to both the front and the rear of the motor vehicle.

The color scheme for license plates is blue on white.

License plates are validated by stickers.

For a motorcycle, moped, or trailer, the plate must be attached to the rear of the vehicle.

Handicapped license plates are available by application to DMV or Customer Service Center.

The use of any bracket, holder, mounting, or frame that obscures the alpha-numeric license number, the name or abbreviated name of the state, or any decal, stamp, or other device indicating the month or year in which registration expires is prohibited.


Virginia

An owner who sells or transfers a registered motor vehicle may have the license plates and the registration number transferred to another vehicle titled in the owner’s name.

An application for transfer of plates must be made to the DMV accompanied by a fee or, if the other vehicle requires a greater registration fee than that for which the license plates were assigned, on the payment of a fee plus the amount of the difference in registration fees between the 2 vehicles.


Washington

All motor vehicles, except trailers, campers, collector vehicles, and motorcycles, are issued 2 license plates. Trailers, campers, collector vehicles, and motorcycles are issued 1 plate.

If a vehicle is issued 2 plates, 1 plate must be displayed on the front of the vehicle, and 1 plate must be displayed on the rear. If 1 plate is issued, that plate must be displayed on the rear of the vehicle. Each vehicle license plate must be placed or hung in a horizontal position at a distance of not less than 1 foot or more than 4 feet from the ground and must be kept clean so as to be plainly seen and read at all times. Any holders, frames, or any materials that in any manner change, alter, or make the vehicle license plate illegible are prohibited.

Current registration tabs are affixed to the rear license plate as indicated on the license plate to identify the registration expiration month or year for a specific vehicle.

The color scheme for license plates is red and blue on white.

Numerous specialty license plates are available.

Disabled license plates or placards are available by application to the DOL or authorized agents located throughout the state. Proof of disability must be provided by the DOL and signed by both the disabled person and his or her physician.


Washington

The owner of a vehicle licensed with standard issue license plates has the option of retaining the vehicle license plates and using them on a replacement vehicle and paying a $10 license plate transfer fee. Retained license plates must be transferred to a vehicle requiring the same type of plate.

When any person who has been issued personalized license plates sells, trades, or otherwise releases ownership of the vehicle upon which the personalized license plates have been displayed, he or she must immediately report the transfer of the plates to a new vehicle or camper eligible for the plates, or he or she must surrender such plates to the DOL and release his or her rights to the letters or numbers displayed on the plates.

A person may not purchase a vehicle bearing foreign license plates without removing and destroying the plates unless the out-of-state vehicle is sold to a Washington resident by a resident of a jurisdiction where the license plates follow the owner. The buyer may also return the plates to the jurisdiction of issuance.


West Virginia

The DMV shall issue to the owner 1 registration plate for a motorcycle, trailer, semitrailer, or other motor vehicle upon registration.

Registration plates must be of a reflective material and display the registration number for the vehicle, the state (which may be abbreviated), and the year when the plate expires.

The registration plate must be legible from a distance of 150 feet during daylight.

The registration number for plates shall begin with the number 2.

Registration plates must be attached to the rear of the vehicle, except for truck tractors and road tractors designed and constructed to pull trailer and semitrailers when plates on the rear would not be visible. In that case, plates must be on the front.

The registration plate must be securely fastened in a horizontal position and must be at a height of not less than 12 inches from the ground.

Disabled license plates and placards are available by application to DMV, accompanied by statement of disability from physician or prescribed form.

The color scheme for license plates is blue and gold on white.


West Virginia

If the owner of a vehicle has made an application within 60 days from the date of purchase of a vehicle to have the registration plate transferred to another vehicle owned by him or her, then he or she may operate the vehicle for a period of 60 days while application is pending.

Upon the transfer of a vehicle, the original owner must retain the plates and notify the DMV of the transfer and deliver the certificate of registration. The DMV shall issue a new registration certificate that indicates the use for the plates. The owner may then use the plate on another vehicle as indicated by the registration certificate.

The registered owner of a vehicle may surrender its plate to the DMV along with the registration card and receive pro-rated fees for a different vehicle of a different class.


Wisconsin

The DOT issues 2 plates, both of which must be displayed.

The plates must be attached to the front and rear.

License plates are validated by stickers sold by the DOT or other authorized providers.

Special plates are issued for persons with disabilities, veterans, amateur radio station licensees, and various special groups.

Personalized plates may also be issued upon application.

The color scheme for license plates is blue on white, red on white, and black on white.


Wisconsin

If a vehicle being transferred is a motorcycle, a motor home, a motor truck, or a dual purpose motor home or dual purpose farm truck with a GVW of not more than 8,000 lbs., the owner must remove the license plate and keep it for use on another vehicle. If the vehicle being transferred is any other type of vehicle, the plate remains with the vehicle.


Wyoming

Upon receipt of an approved application and payment of fees the county treasurer will issue to the applicant 1 reflectorized license plate or validation sticker for motorcycles, and trailers, including house trailers, and 2 reflectorized license plates or proper validation stickers for any other vehicle.

License plates must be conspicuously displayed and securely fastened to be plainly visible, secured to prevent swinging, attached in a horizontal position no less than 12 inches from the ground, and maintained free from foreign materials and in a condition to be clearly legible. Motorcycles and trailers must display 1 license plate on the rear of the vehicle, and all other vehicles must display 1 license plate on the front of the vehicle and 1 license plate on the rear of the vehicle.

License plates and stickers may be delivered by mail if the applicant so desires, but the mailing cost may be required to be paid by the applicant.

Any person who registers 2 or more vehicles may select 1 currently existing registration month for all of those vehicles.

The color scheme for license plates is dark blue on light blue with a graphic background. License plates are also available for amateur radio operators, antique motor vehicles, disabled veterans, former prisoners of war, Pearl Harbor survivors, National Guard members, and Purple Heart recipients.

Applications for a specific license plate number must be made to the county treasurer by the last day of the annual registration month.

WYDOT will issue a special tamper-resistant removable windshield placard to an applicant submitting a letter from his or her physician stating that the applicant has a disability that is expected to last a minimum of 12 months that limits or impairs the ability to walk. The placard is also available to any person responsible for the transportation of eligible persons. An eligible person may also apply for special license plates.


Wyoming

Unless otherwise provided, upon transfer of ownership of a vehicle the registration of the vehicle expires and the original owner must immediately remove the license plates from the vehicle. Within 30 days (45 days for transfer executed by auctioneer) after acquiring another vehicle, the original owner may apply to transfer the license registration number to the new vehicle. The owner must pay the fees based on the amount that would be due on the new vehicle less any credit for the unused portion of the original registration fees.

If a vehicle held in joint ownership between 2 or more joint owners is transferred to 1 or more of the owners, or by a person to the person’s spouse, child, brother, sister, or parent, the same license plates may be kept on the vehicle. The transferee must file an application and pay the proper fee to the county treasurer.

Upon application and payment of the proper fee, license plates may also be transferred from leased vehicle to a replacement leased vehicle and from a vehicle when sold by the owner to a replacement leased vehicle.


Puerto Rico

License plates are issued by TPW only after vehicle is recorded in motor vehicle registry.

New plates are required when use of vehicle chanes and different identification number is required or when individual acquiring vehicle does not possess plates.

Plates must be displayed with illuminated light at night.


Puerto Rico

Plates issued to individual for vehicle may be used in the future when another vehicle is acquired.


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