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  • License Plates & Placards in Vermont

    SUMMARY: Vermont License Plates

    Vermont license plates are issued when you register your vehicle with the DMV, so applying for your plates is easy. When you buy a car, you can get temporary tags from your car dealer to operate the vehicle right away. Should your license plates be lost, stolen, or damaged, you can order replacement license plates by mail or in person. You can even transfer your plates to your next vehicle when you sell your car and buy a new one.

    Keep reading for more details about Vermont license plates and tags.

    NOTE: Are you looking for disability plates or placards? See our Disability Placards & Plates page.

    Types of Vermont License Plates

    Any motor vehicle that is operated on any highway is required to display license plates. Plate letters and numbers must always be clearly visible.

    The Vermont Department of Motor Vehicles (DMV) issues license plates either in pairs or alone. You must attach a license plate to the back of your vehicle. If you are issued a second plate, attach it to the front.

    All license plates have a decal showing the month and year your vehicle registration expires.

    Temporary Tags

    Temporary tags allow you to operate your vehicle while waiting for permanent license plates. You will get a temporary tag:

    • When you buy a vehicle from a dealer who handles your paperwork.
    • When you register a vehicle with the VT DMV and you do not have:
      • Your vehicle title.
      • Your car with you at the DMV for vehicle identification number (VIN) verification, if required.
        OR
      • An odometer disclosure statement from the seller.
    • To use while waiting for a vanity plate.

    Temporary tags issued by the Vermont DMV are valid for 60 days and CANNOT be renewed or extended.

    Intransit Permits

    If you buy a car in VT but will register it in another state, you can apply for an Intransit Permit valid ONLY for traveling to the state or province on the application.

    Other License Plates

    The Vermont DMV offers a wide range of specialty license plates, including vanity plates and organizational plates.

    People with disabilities may be eligible for permits to access disabled parking. Our Disability Placards and Plates page has detailed information.

    Apply for a License Plate in VT

    You will receive a Vermont license plate by registering your vehicle with the DMV. You must register within 60 days of moving to the state.

    For complete instructions, see our vehicle registration page.

    Renew Your Vermont License Plate

    You’ll renew your license plate by renewing your vehicle registration.

    When you complete your registration renewal, you’ll get a new sticker for your license plate. Put it on over the old decal to show that your registration is valid.

    For detailed renewal information, see our VT registration renewal page.

    Replace Lost, Stolen, or Damaged Plates

    If your Vermont license plate has been lost, stolen, or damaged, you can request a replacement by submitting:

    Submit your application:

    • By mail to the address on the form.
      OR
    • In person at a DMV office.

    You should receive your replacement plates within 60 days. Keep your copy of the replacement application with you while driving until you receive your replacement plates.

    Transfer/Surrender Your VT License Plates

    When you no longer need your Vermont license plate, you will need to either transfer it to your next vehicle OR surrender it to the VT DMV.

    Transferring VT Tags

    You can transfer your registration and tags to your next car once you have legally transferred ownership of your old car.

    To transfer your registration and tags:

    Take the application to your local VT DMV branch or mail it to the address on the form.

    Surrendering VT License Plates

    You must surrender your license plates to the VT DMV if:

    • You don’t want to transfer plates to your next vehicle.
    • You register your vehicle in another state.

    To cancel your registration and surrender your tags, send the license plates to:

    Vermont Department of Motor Vehicles
    120 State St
    Montpelier, VT 05603

    Fees for Vermont License Plates

    Standard license plate fees (including renewals):

    • Cars:
      • $70 for 1 year.
      • $129 for 2 years.
    • Motorcycles:
      • $44 for 1 year.
      • $88 for 2 years.
    • Trucks up to 6,099 lbs.:
      • $70 for 1 year.
      • $129 for 2 years.
    • Trucks weighing 6,100 lbs. or more: Varies by weight and fuel type.

    NOTE: Vehicles that use fuel other than gasoline have higher registration and renewal fees.

    Replacement license plates:

    • $10 per plate for all plate types.

    Transfer fees:

    • $23 to transfer vehicle registration.
    • $7 to transfer to a surviving spouse.

    License Plate Lookup in VT

    You can look up information about a license plate or vehicle in several ways:

    • You can order a vehicle history report using a car’s VIN.
    • You can report a parking or traffic violation to the police by giving them a vehicle’s license plate number.
      • The police will run the license plate and handle the matter. They CANNOT give you the owner’s information.

    Vermont DOES NOT provide an online license plate search for personalized plate numbers.

    Special License Plates

    You may apply for any personalized license plate within reason. All requests must be limited to letters and numbers and not be offensive. When submitting your application, you will have to pay an additional $45 vanity plate fee per year in addition to your normal registration fees.

    Sometimes processing of vanity plates may take up to 30 days. If needed, the state will issue you temporary plates until your vanity plates arrive in the mail.

    "Building Bright Futures" Plates

    This plate displays your support for Vermont's Building Bright Futures program, which champions the state's child-care facilities. When submitting an application, be sure to include an additional $20 on top of your regular registration fees. This extra fee will apply with each annual renewal.

    Conservation Plates

    This plate allows you to show you are behind Vermont's attempts to support its wildlife population. The $23 annual fee for this plate goes directly to the Fish and Wildlife Department's Non-game and Natural Heritage program. Applications can be downloaded or found at any DMV office.

    Safety Organization Plates

    Vermont allows groups that serve and protect the public to apply for special plates. Firefighters, National Guard members, and FCC-licensed amateur radio operators all fit this category.

    All applicants must provide a note from their superior or group leader granting them permission to own such plates. If at any time you end your affiliation with your respective group, you must immediately forfeit your special plates to the DMV.

    To apply, submit the application form along with a one-time $15 fee.

    Veterans' Plates

    Before submitting your application to the DMV, you must first have it certified by the Office of Veterans' Affairs. There is no fee when applying for these plates.

    These plates are also available for motorcycles.

    VFW Plates

    When submitting a Veterans of Foreign Wars (VFW) application, you must also provide, besides the usual license renewal forms and fees, either a copy of a valid VFW membership card or an authorization signed by your quartermaster. A one-time $15 fee must also be paid. For a Vietnam Veterans plate, submit a copy of a valid Vietnam Veterans of America membership card or a signed authorization from the VVA.

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