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What to Do With License Plates When Selling a Car?

When selling a car license plates—also referred to as vehicle registration plates. These license plates are necessary for all vehicles and are mandated by each state for the purposes of official identification and security.

There are 50 various license plate options available, ranging from regular to personalized plates, depending on the state. When you sell a damaged car, several laws and restrictions apply about whether to keep or throw away the license plates.

Considering selling a vehicle with its license plates still on? If you're looking for solutions to the following questions, this guide is for you:

What Must I Do for Selling a Car While It Still Has Its License Plates?

How do I recycle my outdated license plates?

  • If I sold an automobile but kept the license plate on, what would happen?
  • When selling cars, what should I do with a license plate?
  • What would happen if you unintentionally left a license plate on a car that was later used in a crime?

Are you prepared to learn the laws that govern plate transfers in your state and what is permitted and forbidden? Continue reading.

What to Do with Old Plates After Selling a Car?

After selling an automobile, are you unsure what to do with the license plates? Before selling your car, you should do some study on what to do with the license plates. This is so that the next owner can leave them on the vehicle as required by some states.

In other regions, you must take them off before transferring ownership, and the purchaser must register the vehicle with new DMV-issued license plates. Therefore, the state you live in determines what to do with license plates when selling an old, junk car.

It's crucial to accurately notify your state that you've sold your car or changed your license plates because doing so lets them know that you're no longer accountable for or connected to your old vehicle.

Most state rules mandate that you take the license plates off the vehicle before transferring ownership to the new owner. Some states require you to leave them on when you sell new license plates. Some will let you keep the license plates and then move them to a new vehicle.

Generally speaking, the DMV will either let you to keep the previous license plates, require you to return the plates, or advise you to destroy the plates depending on the state.

How to Dispose of Old Car’s License Plates?

Before transferring the license plates to your new car, you must remove them. Return the license plates to Safety and Motor Vehicles if you aren't using them. Remember that if you don't return it, your driver's license can be suspended.

Please keep in mind that license plates are state property and must be turned in. Returning license plates to a car service facility with a request to cancel and recycle the plate is the proper way to get rid of them.

Secondly, the owner of the license plate has the right to keep, remove, or transfer the plate to another vehicle. You can transfer them to a new car with the assistance of the Motor Vehicles.

If your new car belongs to the same class as your previous one, you can transfer your license plates to it. Just remember to take off your old plates first. To cancel your registration and return your license plates, get in touch with the Motor Vehicles.

Thirdly, the old and unused license plates do not need to be returned, according to the Secretary of State. However, a program to recycle license plates that are no longer in use has been started by the Illinois Secretary of State's office. By taking their old license plates to a Secretary of State facility and placing them in tamper-proof boxes, citizens can recycle their old plates.

How to Get Rid of License Plates?

You might be thinking, "How do you get rid of license plates? considering the numerous state-by-state rules. Your state's vehicle licensing office, or DMV, should provide detailed instructions on how to recycle license plates. You essentially have three options.

  • First, you can return your old license plates in person at your neighborhood DMV.
  • The old license plates can also be mailed to your local vehicle licensing office. There should be a mailing address for returning old license plates on each state's website.
  • Third, put them in the recycling bin for aluminum at your neighborhood recycling facility. Make sure you take off all of the month and year decals before throwing away old license plates. In order to prevent others from using the plates, it is also advised to damage them. If someone tried to put them in their car, a police officer would stop them and question them about it. This includes bending or tearing them up to that extent.

Remember that if your license plate is stolen and installed on another car, the police will get in touch with you if that car is used in a crime.

Do the License Plates Come with the Car When I sell it!

The majority of states require that you take the license plates off your car before closing the sale. After that, you can choose to return license plates to unregister a car or destroy them when no longer required.

Even after selling your junk car, the license plates should stay even if some states consider them to be part of the vehicle. Here is a list of things you can do with your car's license plates after selling it that you may use as a quick reference.

So let's examine one state as an illustration.

When Selling a Car, Should the License Plates be Removed?

You have to take the license plates off the car before selling it. Remove the license plates and the registration sticker before handing out the keys. You are permitted to move the license plate to another vehicle you own. Following the transfer of your license plates, the County Clerk will issue you a new registration sticker. You must give the license plates to your neighborhood assessor or collector if you no longer intend to use them. If you sell your car, you should take the license plates off.