Can you sell a car with a private number plate?

This is a guest post for which I have been financially compensated for its inclusion.

If it’s time to sell your car, you may be wondering what the best option is if you have a private number plate attached to it. There are several things you can do, such as keep hold of the number plate, have it fitted onto your new vehicle, or simply sell it along with the vehicle.

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Whichever option you choose, there are certain procedures you must take to ensure you do it properly. The DVLA have set rules in which you must follow when it comes to selling and retaining a number plate. Although this may seem overwhelming, whatever you choose is a simple process, and we’ve got the lowdown on exactly what you need to do, whether selling or not.

Retaining my number plate

Private number plates can hold a certain amount of sentimental value and you may not necessarily want to get rid of your plate just because you are selling your vehicle. Similarly, if you know your number plate is worth a lot of money, or has the potential to in the future, you may want to keep hold if it until you decide to sell. This is known as number plate retention.

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If this is what you want to do, the process is simple. You will have to fill out a V317 form on the DVLA website, or print one off and send it via post. You will also be required to pay £80 in order to have the number plate removed. Once your number plate retention application has gone through, you should receive a Certificate of Retention that proves the plate is yours and no longer needs to be placed on a vehicle. This will last for 10 years.

Putting my plate on another vehicle

If, however, you have another vehicle to attach the number plate to, this can also be done. You will have to fill out the V317 application either online or via post, but you will also be required to pay £80 and provide the DVLA with the vehicle’s V5C certificate. If you have only just purchased the vehicle then you will need to provide the V5C/2 new keepers section of the previous owner’s V5C.

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Along with this, you will need to ensure both the old and the new vehicle meet the required standards of the DVLA. Both must be taxed, or declared SORN and have a valid MOT. On top of this, if the DVLA want to inspect the vehicle, it must be in a driveable state to be taken to their offices.

Selling the number plate

Finally, if you decide to sell the plate along with the vehicle, this is a possible option too. When you sell the car, you will have to name the buyer as the new owner of the plate on a V317 application form. Once this has been approved, they will be the legal owner of the number plate.

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If your old vehicle is left without a number plate, the DVLA will usually issue your vehicle with its original number plate before a private one was placed on it. However, if this is not available, they will assign a suitable plate to the vehicle that shows the year the car was first registered.