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What you need to know before buying a custom license plate in Kansas

Custom license plates in Kansas are available for license plates with any number of characters and spaces provided it does not exceed six.

Here is what you need to know before buying a custom license plate in Kansas:

  • The license plate is part of a person’s license and must be returned to the DMV if the license is suspended, canceled or revoked, the vehicle ownership transferred or the license plate used on another vehicle.
  • Fees include one-time $20 fee to issue a customized license plate along with an annual $10 renewal fee (or the standard $40 registration fee).
  • Vehicles such as motorcycles can’t have custom license plates issued. However, customers can get their motorcycle plate numbers converted at no cost into a vanity license plate for other passenger vehicles by calling 785-296-3671 between 8 a.m. and 5 p.m., Monday through Friday.
  • If license plate has been lost or stolen, the owner of the vehicle is required to pay a $10 fee along with a police report before license plates can be issued for replacement.
  • Custom license plates issued in my name cannot be reissued until the license plate is returned to DMV even if it’s found.
  • Custom license plates are made at county treasurer’s offices across Kansas where standard license plates are also available by applying for one using an Application for Vehicle Transaction(s) – County Treasurer (form 40-5208). In addition, most county treasurers’ offices offer specialty license plates such as those promoting trails, wildlife conservation and youth sports along with military license plates.
  • Standard license plates in Kansas are available with most license plate numbers that don’t exceed six characters and/or spaces. Standard license plates range from passenger license plates to license plates for trucks, commercial vehicles and motorcycles. Each type of standard license plate has different required fees for issuance and renewal.
  • Vehicles such as trailers and motorcycles cannot have standard license plates issued or renewed unless the standard license plate messages request a vehicle other than a motorcycle (such as Car hauler trailer) and meets all other criteria including having an acceptable character number.
  • Customized license plates: Renewing your custom license plate will require returning your current tag along with the $10 annual fee before you can get a replacement tag showing new messages.
  • Custom license plates can be renewed for license plates with characters and spaces provided it is six or less.
  • If license plate has been lost or stolen, the owner of the vehicle is required to pay a $10 fee along with a police report before license plates can be issued for replacement.
  • Kansas license plates are valid for one year from the date issued through expiration date shown on license plate or vehicles that require an annual registration may use dealer license plates provided it’s registered to the same person renewing regular license plates.
  • All license plates must be returned to county treasurer prior to expiration even if not used so messages can be updated. License plate messages should only show information about your current address and phone numbers in case there’s an emergency at home while you’re away.
  • Motorcycle license plates are available without license plate numbers for license plates with four characters.
  • License plates issued to motorcycles display the state name on one line at top of license plate followed by three letters and 4 numbers. Motorcycle license plate messages should only show information about your current address and phone number in case there’s an emergency at home while you’re away.
  • Expired license plates cannot be renewed, even if court fines are delinquent, until the old license plate is returned to county treasurer. – Source: Kansas Department of Revenue
  • Every standard license plate has different fees assessed for issuance and renewal so it’s best to check with your local county treasurer for exact fees applicable before requesting a new license tag or renewing your existing custom KS license plate. License plate fees are in addition to other applicable license plate registration fees when applying for license plates in Kansas.
  • Fees to replace license plates, license tags or decals are required in addition to the cost of the standard license plate before you can get a replacement license tag showing new messages.
  • A request for replacement license plates must be submitted by mail along with your valid registration card and payment by personal check or money order made payable to Treasurer, State of Kansas if you have lost your current KS license plate in addition to a copy of your police report that confirms it was stolen in order to receive replacement license plates.

Conclusion:

License plates and license plate messages should not be considered as a way to advertise for your business. Messages displayed on license plates must only reflect information about your current address and phone number in case there’s an emergency at home while you’re away.

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