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  • License Plates & Placards in Michigan

    Michigan License Plates & Placards

    You can't cruise Michigan's roadways without first getting a license plate. And to get a plate, you need to register your vehicle.

    Once that's taken care of, you can select either the classic Great Lakes blue-and-white plate, or for an additional annual fee of $5, a Great Lakes Splendor plate.

    That is, unless you want to wander over to the Secretary of State's online License Plate Store, where you can choose from one of the designs the state offers.

    Surrendering License Plates in Michigan

    The state does not require residents to return their license plates after relocating to another state or selling a vehicle.

    After selling a vehicle, the Michigan Secretary of State (SOS) allows owners on the registration to transfer old license plates to a different vehicle in their name.

    Variety Is the Spice of Life

    Plain vanilla may be fine for your ice cream, but you've got more choices than ever at the License Plate Store.

    In addition to the registration cost for your vehicle, the fundraising plates―for universities and special causes―$35 the first year, with $25 going to your selected cause or university. In subsequent years, the plates are $10 in addition to the registration renewal fee. The $10 goes to the university or cause each year.

    University Logo Plates

    Want to let everyone know that you're a grad, supporter, or fan of the University of Michigan? That's easy. Available university plates include:

    • Central Michigan University
    • Eastern Michigan University
    • Ferris State University
    • Grand Valley State University
    • Lake Superior State University
    • Michigan State University
    • Michigan Technological University
    • Northern Michigan University
    • Oakland University
    • Saginaw Valley State University
    • University of Michigan
    • University of Michigan, Dearborn
    • University of Michigan, Flint
    • Wayne State University
    • Western Michigan University

    Special-cause Plates

    • Agricultural Heritage
    • Children's Trust Fund
    • Lighthouse Preservation
    • Veteran's Memorial
    • Water Quality
    • Wildlife Habitat
    • Patriotic Plate
    • Olympic Education ($25)

    Veteran/Military Service Plates

    These plates are only available to veterans who were honorably discharged. There is an initial $5 service fee. You'll need to fill out an Application for Veteran License Plate (Form BDVR-87) for these plates and turn it in at a Secretary of State branch office.

    • Air Force Veteran
    • Army Veteran
    • Coast Guard Veteran
    • Combat Wounded Veteran (Purple Heart)
    • Cuban Missile Crisis
    • Disabled Veteran
    • Dominican Republic Veteran
    • Ex-Prisoner of War (Ex-POW)
    • Grenada Conflict Veteran
    • Korean War Veteran
    • Laos Conflict Veteran
    • Lebanon Conflict Veteran
    • Marine Corps Veteran
    • Medal of Honor
    • Military Reserve Member
    • National Guard Member
    • Navy Veteran
    • Panama Conflict Veteran
    • Pearl Harbor Survivor
    • Persian Gulf (Desert Storm) Veteran
    • Somalia Conflict Veteran
    • Vietnam War Veteran
    • World War I Veteran
    • World War II Veteran

    Personalize Your Plates

    Perhaps you'd like to make your wheels stand out a little from all the other road warriors you commute with every day. Maybe send a message to that turkey who seems to tailgate you all the way into Detroit from Ann Arbor? Or maybe you just want the world to know who you are?

    Michigan's Secretary of State makes it easy to personalize your license plates with an interactive service called Plate It Your Way that allows you to try out number and letter combinations on one of the many license plate styles available to you.

    The service automatically blocks most rude or offensive words, and Secretary of State employees review vanity plate requests for good taste before a plate is issued.

    In addition to your registration fee, you can personalize the standard blue-and-white plate for $30 (with $15 renewals). You can also personalize any graphic or fundraising plate for $30 plus the cost of the graphic plate.

    All personalized license plates must be applied for at a Secretary of State branch office.

    Disability Plates and Placards

    If you have a disability that restricts your mobility, you may request a disability placard or license plate that allows you to park in specially reserved parking spaces close to building entrances.

    Disability License Plates

    Your disability must be deemed permanent by a medical professional. You may qualify for a plate if you:

    • Are legally blind.
    • Cannot walk more than 200 feet without having to stop and rest.
    • Use a wheelchair, walker, crutch, or brace.
    • Suffer from a lung disease.
    • Are diagnosed with a cardiovascular condition.
    • Have severe arthritis.
    • Need a portable oxygen supply.

    Apply at any Secretary of State branch office or mail in the Application for a Disability License Plate (MV-110) found online.
    Your disability will need to be certified by a physician, chiropractor, or vision specialist.

    Disability Placards

    There are two types of disabled placards. Blue placards are issued to individuals when there is little hope a qualifying condition will improve. They're valid for four years, expiring on the individual's birthday. Red placards are valid from one to six months and may not be renewed. There is no fee for either placard.

    To obtain one, submit an application at a Secretary of State branch office. Your physician will need to certify your condition on the application.

    Antique (Historical or Authentic) License Plates

    Historical Plates

    You can apply for historical plates if your prized vehicle is 26 years old or older, owned as a collector's item and used only in parades, exhibitions or car club activities. You cannot use a designated historical vehicle for everyday functions such as driving to and from work or running errands.

    Visit any Secretary of State branch office to submit an Application and Certification (Form BDVR-96). Be sure to bring the vehicle's title, proof of Michigan no-fault insurance, and a check for $30. If you're missing the title, bring the vehicle's last registration certificate.

    The plates are good for 10 years.

    Authentic Plates

    Michigan also allows you to register your antique vehicle with a same-year general use Michigan license plate. The plate must be authentic and feature the correct colors for the plate year.

    To register, you must submit:

    Authentic plates cannot be registered in person. Mail is your only option. Send to the address specified on the application form.

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