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Minnesota License Plate Search

Minnesota residents can register their vehicles with the Driver and Vehicles Services. License plates are required for most vehicles to drive legally on state roads.

There are various plates available such as specialty plates, disability plates, and vanity plates.

Sample Minnesota License Plate

Applying for License Plates in Minnesota

You can register your vehicle with the Minnesota Driver and Vehicle Services (DVS).

New residents must register their out-of-state vehicles within 60 days. However, if your vehicle’s registration is about to expire from the previous state, you must register right away.

If you’re purchasing a new vehicle from a dealership, most dealers will assist with the registration of your vehicle. You’ll be provided with temporary plates and can drive legally until your plates have been processed.

To apply for license plates in Minnesota, you’ll need the following:

  • Vehicle title certificate (i.e. proof of ownership)
  • Proof of insurance for the vehicle
  • Completed application forms
  • Odometer reading
  • Lease agreement (if applicable)
  • Valid ID (i.e. Minnesota driverès license)
  • Payment for fees

Note: Anyone who has moved to Minnesota from a different state must also obtain a Minnesota driver’s license.

Types of License Plates in Minnesota

When applying for your license plate, it is possible to choose from various license plate styles.

Minnesota’s standard license plate has a blue and white background with blue lettering, the state’s emblem, and “10 000 lakes” across the bottom. You’ll receive this plate if you don’t make a special request for other styles available.

Also offered are:

  • Specialty License Plates
  • Personalized License Plates
  • Disability License Plates & Placards

Note: Before registering your vehicle, you may require temporary license plates in Minnesota to drive legally from the point of sale, to your home, and the DVS office.

Specialty License Plates in Minnesota

You can apply for a specialty license plate in Minnesota which has a unique design and represents a local charity, organization, or cause.

Example of Specialty Plates Available in Minnesota:

  • Firefight License Plates
  • Support Our Troops License Plates
  • Military Veterans License Plates
  • Ex-POW License Plates
  • Medal of Honor License Plates
  • National Guard License Plates
  • Ready Reserve License Plates
  • Critical Habitat License Plates

Typically, fees for specialty plates can be:

  • Plate fee: $10
  • Registration Fee: $10
  • Minimum Yearly Donation: $35 (if applicable)

Personalized License Plates in Minnesota

Personalized license plates allows you to create custom plate numbers for your vehicle. You should look up available plate numbers online before applying.

The state of Minnesota requires the following guidelines when applying for personalized license plates:

  • Up to 7 characters (at least 1 letter and numbers)
  • Up to 6 characters for motorcycles
  • No profanity or inappropriate suggestions
  • Provide reasoning in application
  • Pay the $100 fee to apply and a $10 fee for filing

Be sure to follow the guidelines by the Minnesota DVS to ensure your personalized plates are approved.

Disability License Plates in Minnesota

If you have a disability you may be eligible to receive a placard or license plate for your vehicle. This special license plate enables you to park in designated parking spots for people with disabilities.

Disability license plates are issued to:

  • People with a permanent disability

Alternatively, you can apply for a placard to place in your windshield if your disability is:

  • Temporary
  • Short-term
  • Long-term

Be sure to bring the necessary documents when you apply for these Minnesota license plates.

Renew License Plates in Minnesota

Before the registration stickers on your rear license plate expires, you should renew your vehicle with the DVS. It is possible to renew your stickers online, in person, or by mail.

You may receive a notification in the mail before your stickers expire.

If you don’t renew your vehicle’s stickers before the expiration date, you may have to pay late fees when you get around to renewing them.

Surrendering License Plates in Minnesota

When you move to a new state, you won’t have to surrender your license plates. However, if you sell your vehicle before the registration expires, it is possible to apply to a refund. You must surrender your license plate if you intend to receive a refund for your vehicle’s registration.

Transferring License Plates in Minnesota

In Minnesota, standard license plates remain with the vehicle. If you have custom or personalized plates, you can transfer your license plates to a new vehicle. To do so, you must:

  • Register your new vehicle with the DVS
  • Be the owner of the specialty or personalized plate
  • Pay the transfer fee

Contact the DVS for more details about transfering plates to a new vehicle.

Replacement License Plates in Minnesota

If your plates are lost, stolen, or damaged, it is possible to have your plates replaced. You’ll have to go to a DVS office and apply. The fees for replacements are:

  • Filing Fee: $10
  • Replacing 2 License Plates: $6
  • Replacing 1 License Plate: $4.50
  • Replacing Stickers: $1

If your plates were stolen, you should contact the local authorities and file a report.

Overview of Costs for License Plates in Minnesota

The following fees are applicable to you when registering a vehicle with the DVS:

  • Standard License Plate Registration & Renewal:
    • 2 License Plates: $6
    • 1 License Plate: $4.50
    • Renewal fee: $6
  • Replacement
    • Filing: $10
    • 2 New Plates: $6
    • 1 New Plate: $4.50
    • Stickers: $1
  • Transfer
    • Fee: depends on plate being registered

In addition to any of the above fees, you may also be required to pay state tax, titling fees, and other fees related to vehicle registration.

Looking Up Available License Plates in Minnesota

If you are considering applying for a personalized license plate in Minnesota, you should look up available plate numbers online.  

Simply submit the plate number you want in the relevant state and hit submit. Be sure you are following the guidelines provided by the DVS for personalization.