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Special License Plates in West Virginia

SUMMARY: West Virginia Specialty License Plates

If you live in West Virginia, you have your choice of specialty license plates, from personalized tags to special plates for interests, colleges, and other organizations. You can usually apply for special plates in person or by mail.

Read this page to learn all about the special license plates available from the West Virginia Division of Motor Vehicles (DMV).

NOTE: Need disabled parking plates? See our page Disability Placards & Plates for information.

Personalized Plates in West Virginia

In West Virginia, you can personalize your license plate with a custom tag number.

It must have:

  • 2 to 8 characters (letters and numbers only).
  • A minimum of 1 letter.

Your license plate CANNOT replicate an existing plate number or contain anything offensive.

You can check the availability of a letter/number combination on the WV DMV website.

The fee to order a personalized West Virginia license plate varies based on the type of plate you want:

  • Standard personalized plate: $45.
  • Scenic personalized plate: $55.
  • Wildlife personalized plate: $70.

Application details can be found below.

NOTE: Plate fees will be less if you've already paid your registration renewal fees.

Special License Plates

The WV DMV offers several types of special plates. Plates are available for:

  • General interests.
  • Colleges and universities.
  • Groups and organizations.

NOTE: For application details for each of these plate types, please see Apply for WV Special Plates below.

General Interest License Plates

License plates in the “general interest" category span a wide range of topics, from sports to health awareness. For example, you can get plates for:

  • Breast Cancer Awareness.
  • NASCAR.
  • Organ donation.
  • Wildlife.

Some plates have eligibility requirements. For example, you must be a licensed teacher in WV to get an Educator license plate.

Check the specific plate you want for any eligibility guidelines.

College and University Plates

The WV DMV offers several plates for colleges and universities throughout the United States.

Eligibility for some plates is limited to alumni or others associated with the institution.

License plates are available for institutions like:

  • Marshall University (for anyone in WV).
  • Penn State (for Alumni Association members ONLY).
  • Virginia Tech (for alumni, current students, and school boosters).
  • West Virginia University (for Alumni Association members or for non-members who make a donation).

The WV DMV website has a complete list of college and university plates, along with eligibility requirements for each plate.

Group & Organization Tags

Several license plates from the West Virginia DMV are designed for specific organizations and groups, from social groups to professional organizations.

For example, you can get license plates for:

  • The Benevolent Protective Order of Elks.
  • Contractors Association of West Virginia.
  • League of Postmasters.

Many organization plates are restricted to members of the organization. Check the eligibility requirements when you apply for the plate.

For a complete list of organization license plates and requirements, see the WV DMV website.

Fees for WV Special Plates

Fees vary for each special license plate.

Initial application fees are based on the expiration date of your current registration. Your application form will have a list of fees.

Renewal fees differ for each type of license plate—for example:

  • WV 150th Anniversary plate: $30.
  • Penn State license plate: $45.
  • League of Postmasters plate: $45.

Some special license plates can be personalized for an additional fee.

Military Plates in West Virginia

The WV DMV offers many military license plates that recognize veterans, military organizations, and special honors.

Plates are available for:

  • General military service, including:
    • Veterans.
    • Women veterans.
  • Branch-specific service, such as:
    • Army National Guard.
    • Navy retired.
  • Conflicts, for example:
    • War On Terrorism – Afghanistan.
    • Korean War Veteran.
  • Honors and other recognition, including:
    • Distinguished Flying Cross.
    • Former prisoner of war.

To qualify for a military plate, your service experience must reflect the distinction on the license plate.

You'll be required to submit proof of your eligibility for the plate, usually in the form of:

  • Discharge papers.
  • A valid military ID.
  • Certification from the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs.

A plate fee is charged to issue most military plates. You'll ALSO pay standard registration fees and renewal fees.

  • The fee to get a Veteran license plate is $10.
  • The fee for a War on Terrorism - Afghanistan plate is $10.

See the WV Division of Motor Vehicles website for a complete list of military plates, eligibility requirements, and fees. For details on how to apply, keep reading below.

Antique & Classic Vehicle Plates

The WV DMV offers two types of historic vehicle plates:

  • Antique vehicle license plates for vehicles more than 25 years old, used for:
  • Classic car plates for vehicles older than 25 years old, for general transportation. Fees are:
    • $55 to order.
    • $45 to renew.

Antique and classic car tags are considered general interest plates. Application instructions can be found below at Apply for WV Special Plates.

Apply for WV Special Plates

The application process for special plates varies depending on the plate. To apply, you'll need to:

  • Find your plate and the appropriate application instructions in one of the following categories:
  • Provide any required documentation/certification or proof of eligibility for your chosen tag.
    • Many plates, such as military plates, require that you prove eligibility. See your application for eligibility requirements.
  • Provide payment for the fee.
    • The fee will be listed with the plate information. See the appropriate category above to find your plate.

Most applications may be submitted:

  • In person to your local West Virginia DMV office.
    OR
  • By mail to the address listed on the application form.

Be sure to check your form to verify the accepted methods of application.

Renew & Replace WV Special Plates

Special Plate Renewal

Special plate renewal is part of your standard vehicle registration renewal. However, be aware that an additional special plate renewal fee may apply on top of your regular registration renewal fees.

You can find your plate to see the registration terms, as well as the expiration date and renewal fees for that plate.

To learn more about renewing your registration, visit our Registration Renewal in West Virginia page.

Replacement Special Plates

If your custom WV license plate has been lost, stolen, or mutilated, you can order a duplicate online.

To do so, simply visit the West Virginia DMV website and provide the requested information.

Contact your local WV DMV office to obtain a paper application to submit in person or by mail.

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