License Plates in Texas
LOST OR STOLEN LICENSE PLATES
As soon as license plates are lost, stolen or illegible they must be replaced. In order to replace your plates you must:
- Visit your local county tax office.
- Fill in an application for replacement plates. Please see the list below for links to the appropriate forms for each type of plate.
- Pay the license plate replacement fees of $ 5.30 and in counties with a population of 50,000 the fee is $ 6.30.
CUSTOM AND PERSONALIZED PLATES
These are the different types of plates in the regular series: Auto, Commercial, Trailer, Motorcycle, Permanent Trailer Identification, Disabled Person, Disabled Veteran, and Foreign Organization. When you have completed the forms, take them to your county tax office and submit them with the appropriate fees.
Special Interest Plates
The following is a list of some examples of special interest plates: Arts, Collegiate, Firefighter, Ex-Prisoner of War, Memorial, Parade Vehicles, Veterans, Professional sports teams like Dallas Cowboys or Houston Texans, Organ donor or YMCA, Airborne Parachutists or Vietnam Veteran. You need to show proof of belonging to these special groups to take advantage of Special Interest Plates. You have to apply to your county tax office and submit them with the appropriate fees (see below). You can also apply online at [under maintenance Texas Online].
The fees for replacing a license plate or getting new plates vary depending on the type of plate you need. For more information on these fees please follow the link here.
WHAT TO DO WITH PLATES WHEN BUYING/SELLING A VEHICLE
Under Texas Law it is not mandatory to retain standard license plates from a vehicle when selling. The plates will remain with the buyer once the ownership of the vehicle has been transferred; however, if the plates are special interest or personalized then there are two options for the seller. One, keep the plates for another vehicle which is of a similar type and two, release the plate to the buyer. The first options require the seller to get in touch with the county tax office who will make the necessary transfer. You however, cannot transfer any plate which has served seven years and as such they have to be manufactured again.