Dealer Licensing in New Jersey

You may need a New Jersey dealer license if you plan to be in the business of transacting car sales. On this page, we’ll go over the requirements to get your credentials so you can get to work as a dealer in The Garden State.

Types of Car Dealer Licenses

You need a NJ dealer license If you’re in the business of buying, selling, or leasing motor vehicles on your own behalf (includes car auctioneers and brokers) OR on behalf of a separate entity. The type of license you need depends on your business.

The New Jersey Motor Vehicle Commission (MVC) Business Licensing Services Bureau issues licenses based on the kind(s) of vehicle(s) you’ll be dealing with:

  • New and used cars.
  • Used cars only.
  • Leased vehicles.
  • Boats.

Going forward, we explain how to:

  • Apply for a new and/or used car dealer license.
    • If your business will offer leasing options, you’ll need to apply for a long-term leasing license, which we’ll cover in our instructions on applying for a new and/or used dealer license.
  • Set up an established place of business per state requirements.

For details on boat dealer licenses, head over to the MVC’s page on boat dealerships.

Apply for a Dealer License in NJ

To apply for a New Jersey new and/or used car dealer license (and/or a long-term leasing license, if applicable), submit:

  • The applicable, completed dealer license application packet for:
  • For each owner, partner, officer, and/or member:
    • A copy of their driver’s license.
    • A passport-sized color photograph (write the name of the person on the back of the photo).
  • For each signatory listed as an employee, include a copy of a document that verifies employment status such as a W-2, W-4, or pay stub.
  • A copy of:
  • Pictures and plans depicting the entire premise and signage for the business.
  • If you’re applying to be a new car dealer, the original manufacturer certificate completed by the vehicle manufacturer.

Mail the above to:

Motor Vehicle Commission
Business Licensing Services Bureau
Dealer Licensing Unit
P.O. Box 171
225 East State Street
Trenton, NJ 08666

Once your application is received, an agent from the NJ Motor Vehicle Commission will come to inspect your business location. We’ll go over the requirements your business must meet to pass the inspection next.

After successful completion of your application and inspection you’ll receive a notification requesting payment for the dealer license and registration fees along with a certificate of insurance and a surety bond for $10,000.

Location Requirements for Car Dealerships

An inspector will check to ensure your dealership meets New Jersey’s definition of an established place of business, meaning you must have:

  • An office with a:
    • Desk and chair.
    • Landline telephone.
    • Safe to store motor vehicle documents.
  • A display space able to showcase at least 2 vehicles.
    • You DO NOT need a display space if you’re only applying for a leasing license.
  • An exterior sign with letters legible from the roadway and permanently affixed to the building or land (in accordance with local laws).
    • You DO NOT need this sign if you’re applying for a leasing license.

Furthermore, your business’ walls may need to meet certain requirements, dependent on whether you’re sharing your premises with other businesses. Refer to the Dealer Certification of Licensed Location Type and Proper Walls (Form BLS-158) in your dealer application packet for details.

New Jersey Dealer License Fees

Dealer license and registration fees include the following:

  • Dealer license: $100.
  • Registration (TOTAL): $257.50.
    • Includes 5 dealer license plates.

Submit your payment by following the instructions on the notification you receive after your application has been approved. When everything’s processed, you’ll have your New Jersey dealer license!

If you need help at any point in the application process, call the MVC’s Business Licensing Services Bureau at (609) 292-6500 extension 5014.

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