Dealer Licensing in Missouri

If you want to sell cars in Missouri, you’ll need to apply for a dealer license with the Department of Revenue (DOR). On this page, we’ll teach you the ins and outs of applying for a MO dealer license. 

MO Dealer License Classification

The Missouri DOR issues a number of different dealer licenses for people including (but not limited to):

  • New motor vehicle franchise dealers (can sell new and used cars).
  • Used motor vehicle dealers (can only sell used cars).
  • Boat dealers.
  • Motor vehicle brokers.
  • Public motor vehicle auctioneers.
  • Trailer dealers.
  • Wholesale motor vehicle dealers.

Dealer Eligibility Requirements

PRIOR to submitting your application for a new/franchise or used dealer license in Missouri, you must:

  • Register your business with the MO Secretary of State (SOS).
    • Call the SOS at (573) 751-3827 for details.
  • Have your dealership pass an inspection.
  • Complete a dealer educational seminar IF you’re applying for a used motor vehicle dealer license.

MO Dealership Inspections

You’ll need to set up an inspection appointment with a local member or designee of the MO State Highway Patrol troop in your area

The Department of Revenue requires your dealership to meet the following criteria for a bona fide established place of business

  • The main building for conducting business must:
    • Be permanently enclosed.
    • Be owned or leased by you (the dealer license applicant).
    • Have its own working telephone and listing.
  • The display area must:
    • Have room for multiple motor vehicles exclusively displayed for sale.
    • Not be a public road.
    • Be easily viewed from the closest public road.
  • The dealership’s sign must:
    • Display the name of the dealership as it appears in advertisements to the public.
    • Have letters at least 6 inches tall.
    • Be permanent and able to withstand the weather.
  • Your business hours must be posted.
    • Business must be open at least 20 hours per week.
    • Business must be open at least 4 days per week between 6 a.m. and 10 p.m.  

Once your dealership passes inspection, the inspector will complete the applicable section on the Application for Dealer, Auction, or Manufacturer License and Number Plate (Form 4682)—keep track of this form! You’ll need it to apply for your license.

If you have questions about the requirements your business must meet for inspection, call the MO DOR at (573) 526-3669.

Apply for a MO Dealer License

Now that you’re done with the dealership inspection, it’s time to put together an application for your motor vehicle dealer license! This requires a lot of different components—keep the Missouri Dealer Operating Manual (REV 2023) nearby for reference. 

To apply for your Missouri dealer license, submit the following items to the MO Department of Revenue:

  • A completed Application for Dealer, Auction, or Manufacturer License and Number Plate (Form 4682).
    • Remember, an inspector will need to complete certain parts of this application.
  • The criminal records for all owners listed on your dealer license application.
    • Request and print the criminal records using the MO State Highway Patrol’s online record service.
  • A photo of your dealership’s building, display lot, and sign.
    • The photo must be between 5 x 7 inches and 8 x 10 inches.
  • Proof of garage liability insurance.
  • An original corporate surety dealer bond OR original irrevocable letter of credit from a state or federal financial institution in the amount of $50,000.
  • If you’re applying for a:
    • New motor vehicle dealer franchise license: A letter of appointment OR franchise agreement stating:
      • Your dealership’s name and address.
      • The start and end dates of your contract with the franchisor.
      • The make and model of the vehicles you’ll sell.
    • Used motor vehicle dealer license: Certificate of completion of an approved dealer educational seminar.
  • Check or money order made payable to “Missouri Department of Revenue” for the applicable dealer license and plate fees.
    • The amount you owe will depend on the month you submit your application—refer to the fee charts in the Missouri Dealer Operating Manual (REV 2023) for specifics.

Mail all the required items above to: 

Motor Vehicle Bureau
Dealer Licensing Section
P.O. Box 43
Jefferson City, MO 65105

Once the DOR approves your dealer license application, you’ll receive your new/franchise or used motor vehicle dealer license! Your dealer license and plates will expire annually on December 31st.

We know this application is a lot of work—if you need help along the way, don’t hesitate to call the MO Department of Revenue at (573) 526-3669.

DMV.ORG BBB Business Review