How Much Are License Plates In New Jersey?

In New Jersey, new license plate costs can vary depending on the type of plates you choose. Standard New Jersey plates cost $6.
If you want personalized plates, they’ll cost $50. Additional taxes and fees apply to both new and renewal registrations.
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What Is The Process For Getting New Jersey Plates?

In New Jersey, vehicles are required to have both a rear and front license plate.

Every US state requires a rear license plate. Some states require a rear plate only, while other states require two license plates.

Here are the steps for getting a new license plate from the New Jersey Motor Vehicle Commission (NJ MVC).

1. Get car insurance. Before you can register your car and get new license plates, you first have to get car insurance that meets the minimum coverage requirements in New Jersey.
2. Get your car inspected. New Jersey requires all cars to pass a safety inspection before they can be registered. You can get your vehicle inspected at a New Jersey Motor Vehicle Commission (MVC) inspection station.
3. Fill out the registration application. You can get a registration application from an MVC office or online. You'll need to provide personal information, your car, and your insurance.
4. Submit the application. Bring your completed registration application to your closest MVC office, along with your proof of insurance, proof of identity, and payment for any applicable fees.
5. Get new license plates. Once your application is processed and approved, you'll receive your license plates by mail or in-person. You'll also receive a registration certificate and a windshield sticker indicating the expiration date of your registration.
6. Install your license plates. You should install your license plates as soon as you receive them. The front plate should be installed on the front bumper, and the rear plate should be installed on the rear bumper.

The Cost of License Plates In New Jersey

There are many different types of license plates: passenger license plates, commercial vehicle plates, special license plates, trailer plates, and motorcycle plates.
License plates measure 6 by 12 inches and are rectangular (motorcycle license plates are smaller, measuring 4 by 7 inches). They are made of aluminum, which is durable and resistant to rust.

The New Jersey license plate has seven characters (across the 50 states, license plates have anywhere from six to eight characters).

How Much Are Standard License Plates In New Jersey?

Standard New Jersey license plates cost $6.

Passenger vehicles, commercial motor vehicles, motorcycles, permanent trailers, trailer coaches, and park trailers are eligible for a standard New Jersey license plate.

Standard license plates are issued in any of the following scenarios:

The replacement of special interest license plates with standard plates
Purchase of a new vehicle
Replacing damaged, stolen or lost license plates

New Jersey Specialty Plates

In New Jersey, if you are a member of a qualified non-profit service, community, or alumni organization, you can commemorate your group's civic contributions and achievements with special organizational plates. The price of New Jersey specialty license plates ranges from $6 to $50.

1. Military personnel
2. Volunteer workers
3. Professionals
4. Alumni
5. Non-profit service
6. Community

Military Plate Designs

The National Guard: $15
Disabled American Veterans: $15
Combat Infantryman Badge: $15
Veterans of Foreign Wars: $30
Navy Cross: $15
Congressional Medal of Honor (issued only to holders of the Congressional Medal of Honor at no charge)
Gold Star Family (no charge)
Silver Star (no charge)
Prisoners of War (no charge)

Volunteer Workers Designs

Firefighters: $6
First aider: $6
Amateur radio: $15
EMT-A: $25

Professionals Designs

Physician license plates: $50
Dentist license plates: $50
Nurse license plates: $50
Physical therapist license plate: $50
Veterinary license plates: $50

Alumni Designs

Montclair State University: $50
Rutgers University: $50
Rowan University: $50
Seton Hall University: $50
The College of New Jersey (TCNJ): $50
Ramapo College: $50
Monmouth University: $50
Rider University: $50
William Paterson University: $50
Kean University: $50
New Jersey Institute of Technology (NJIT): $50
Stockton University: $50

Non-profit Service Designs

Autism Awareness: $50
Children's Trust Fund: $50
Conserve Wildlife: $50
Keep it Green: $50
Share the Road: $50

Community Designs

Girl Scouts: $50
Knights of Columbus: $50
Sons of the American Legion: $50
New Jersey Freemasons: $50
Vietnam Veterans: $50
Blue Knights: $50
Combat Wounded Purple Heart: $50
Gold Star Family: $50
New Jersey Firefighters Mutual Benevolent Association (FMBA): $50
New Jersey Fraternal Order of Police (FOP): $50
New Jersey Elks: $50
New Jersey Moose: $50
New Jersey State PBA: $50
New Jersey State Firefighters Mutual Benevolent Association (FMBA): $50
New Jersey State First Aid Council: $50
New Jersey Volunteer Firefighters: $50
New Jersey Volunteer Ambulance and Rescue Association: $50

Organizational plates cannot be ordered online or at a motor vehicle agency. All applications must go through a qualified non-profit, alumni, or service group.

You can call the MVC’s Special Plate Unit at 609-292-6500 to request the name of your organization’s license plate coordinator.

Once approved by the coordinator of the respective organization, plates are available from:

New Jersey Motor Vehicle Commission
Special Plate Unit
PO Box 015
225 East State Street
Trenton, NJ 08666-0015

New Jersey Personalized Plates

Personalized New Jersey license plates cost $50. A personalized plate must have at least three letters and a maximum of seven characters in a combination of letters and numbers.
These plates can be ordered in person, by mail, or online, unless the vehicle is leased.

You can download the personalized license plate application (Form SP-1) and send it through the mail to complete the request.

To apply for personalized plates, you will need to send the application along with a check or money order for $50 payable to the New Jersey MVC to:

New Jersey Motor Vehicle Commission
Special Plate Unit
PO Box 15
Trenton, NJ 08666-0015

Disability License Plates

Disability license plates come with no fees for those who are eligible.

Individuals who meet the medical qualifications are eligible to choose from one of three options:

One set of wheelchair symbol license plates
One person with a disability placard
One set of plates and one placard

To apply for plates or a placard, complete the application for vehicle license plates and/or placard for persons with a disability (Form SP-41)

This transaction can be completed by visiting an MVC location or submitting a request through the mail.

If you choose to submit through the mail, send to the following address:

New Jersey Motor Vehicle Commission (MVC)
Special Plate Unit
225 East State Street
PO Box 015
Trenton, NJ 08666-0015

New Jersey Title Transfers

In the state of New Jersey, titling and registration are done at the same time. After purchasing a used car, you will need to provide your local NJ Motor Vehicle Commission office with additional paperwork, including:

The vehicle title with your signature and driver's license number
Title application
Proof of a valid New Jersey car insurance policy
Payment for the car title transfer fee of $60
Payment for NJ vehicle sales tax of 7% unless the car is exempt

When you purchase a car from a private party, you will be required to complete the title transfer within 10 business days. If you don't meet that deadline, you will have to pay a fee of $25.

See our guide to transferring a New Jersey car title for more info on the process.

Emissions Testing

In order to complete a title transfer or registration in New Jersey, you will need to perform emission testing unless you meet one of the following exemptions:

Gas powered cars model year 1995 and older with a GVWR 8,500 pounds or less
Gas powered cars registered passenger model year 2007 and older with a GVWR 8,501 to 14,000 pounds
Gas powered cars model year 2013 and older with a GVWR 14,001 pounds or more.
Historic motor vehicles
Approved Collector Vehicles which are less than 25 years old
100% Electric vehicles
All diesel powered vehicles with a gross vehicle weight rating (GVWR) 8,501 to 17,999
All diesel powered vehicles model year 1996 and older

If the car that you are buying does not meet any of these criteria, find a local NJ MVC-authorized emissions check station and proceed with the test.

For the locations of smog check stations, visit the New Jersey MVC website.

For most cars, the fee for performing this test will be $50.

New Jersey Car Registration

To apply for a New Jersey license plate, you must have a valid vehicle registration card from the New Jersey MVC. In New Jersey, you can register your vehicle in person. To make things more efficient, title transfer and car registration are done simultaneously.

You will need to submit the following documents to your local MVC office:
Vehicle title
Driver’s license or another form of ID
New Jersey insurance card or insurance company name and policy number
Completed vehicle registration application form
Lien holder information and financing statement if the vehicle is leased or financed

Registration fees will vary depending on the type of car purchased:

Cars 2 or less years old and weighing 3500 lbs and under: $59
Cars older than 2 years and weighing 3500 lbs and under: $46.50
All cars within 2 years old and weighing over 3500 lbs: $71.50
All cars older than 2 years and weighing over 3500 lbs: $84

To avoid paying a late fee or penalties, make sure you register the car right after transferring the title.

How to Order License Plates

New Jersey allows you 3 ways of ordering plates: by mail, online, or in person at a MVC office. Here are the steps you’ll need to follow:

1. Check plate availability (for personalized or specialty plates). If you want a personalized plate, visit the New Jersey MVC website and see if your desired plate configuration is available.
2. Complete the application. The license plate ordering form can be found on the New Jersey MVC website.
3. Provide all necessary documentation. You will need to provide proof of identity, vehicle ownership, and other documentation. This will include information such as your driver's license, vehicle registration, and insurance policy.
4. Pay the fee. The cost depends on the type of plate you want. You can pay the fee in cash, check, or credit or debit card.
5. Wait for delivery. After you have completed the application and paid the fee, your license plates will be mailed to you at the address you have on file with the New Jersey MVC. The processing time varies according to the type of plate ordered.

How Much Does It Cost To Register a Car In New Jersey From Out Of State?

To register a car after having moved to New Jersey, bring the following to your local Motor Vehicle Commission (MVC) office:

Present a New Jersey insurance identification card
Give proof of your Social Security number
Present a New Jersey driver’s license number
Provide the vehicle odometer reading
Submit the application for titling
Submit the application for vehicle registration (Form BA-49).
Pay the registration fees
Read our guide to purchasing a vehicle remotely if you're thinking about buying an out-of-state car.

New Jersey MVC Registration Renewal Fee

The state sends residents a car registration renewal notice about three months before the vehicle's registration expires. Even if you lose your renewal notice, you can still renew your registration. The state provides a PIN request tool to assist you in locating your registration information.

Here are the three options for renewing your registration:

1. Renew online
2. Renew in-person at an agency
3. Renew via mail

To renew your registration online, you must have your registration renewal form, your social security number, a valid car insurance policy number, and a credit card. Before submitting their registration online, New Jersey residents must confirm that the address listed with the state is correct.

Residents who wish to mail their vehicle registration to the state must pay with a check or money order made payable to the New Jersey Motor Vehicle Commission. The state requires residents to mail their registration renewal form well in advance of their registration expiration date.

Each state has different requirements for how often license plates need to be renewed. New Jersey drivers are required to renew their registration annually.

Being late on registration renewal can lead to late additional fees, fines, and other problems when pulled over for a traffic stop. To avoid this, it is important to pay careful attention to the registration expiration date.

License Plate Replacement Fees

In some cases, the New Jersey MVC may require you to change your license plates. If your license plate is lost or stolen, contact the MVC office to have it replaced with new numbers and letters.

To replace lost or stolen plates with new ones containing the next available number:

Make an official police report to the municipality where the license plates were stolen, and keep a copy for your records.
Visit a motor vehicle agency and present the current registration and required identification.
Pay the $6 standard plate fee or the $11 special interest/dedicated plate fee.

If your license plate was stolen, you’ll need to report the theft to law enforcement and apply for a replacement.

New Jersey Temporary Registration Permits

A temporary license plate (or "temp tag") can be acquired from any licensed dealership or at the MVC. These temporary vehicle tags are typically valid for 30 days and cost $5, during which time you can apply for and renew your original license plate.

How To Check If a Car Has New Jersey Back Fees?

Before you buy a used car in New Jersey, find out if it has any hidden fees. If it does, you could be responsible for them.

The first step is to obtain the vehicle identification number (VIN) from the seller. With the VIN, you can contact your closest New Jersey MVC location and request a title search. The New Jersey MVC will be able to tell you if there are any unpaid fees associated with the car, such as a vehicle registration fee or a parking ticket.

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New Jersey License Plates FAQ

What happens if I lose my New Jersey car registration?

In New Jersey, replacing your lost registration is handled online or at an MVC office.

The state requires the following for duplicate registration cards:

- Passenger registration replacement fee: $5.
- Four-year accelerated registration fee: $5 during the last year of registration
- Accelerated registration fee: $11 for the first three years of registration

For those who have leased vehicles, you'll need to contact your leasing company to get a power of attorney (POA) form. The form must include this information:

1. Name of the lessee
2. Statement of authorization
3. Vehicle Identification Number (VIN)

You'll also need to provide the basic details about the car, which include its model, make, and year.

How to request a duplicate title in New Jersey?

What are some important facts about New Jersey vehicle registration?