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Title 23: Motor Vehicles

Chapter 007: REGISTRATION

  • Subchapter 001: General Registration
  • § 301. Persons required to register

    Residents, except as provided in chapter 35 of this title, shall annually register motor vehicles owned or leased for a period of more than 30 days and operated by them, unless currently registered in Vermont. Notwithstanding this section, a resident who has moved into the State from another jurisdiction shall register his or her motor vehicle within 60 days of moving into the State. A person shall not operate a motor vehicle nor draw a trailer or semi-trailer on any highway unless such vehicle is registered as provided in this chapter. Vehicle owners who have apportioned power units registered in this State under the International Registration Plan are exempt from the requirement to register their trailers in this State. (Amended 1961, No. 97, § 1, eff. May 3, 1961; 1985, No. 124 (Adj. Sess.), § 6; 2003, No. 56, § 70, eff. June 4, 2003; 2015, No. 47, § 6; 2019, No. 60, § 15.)

  • § 301a. Repealed. 2015, No. 47, § 5.

  • § 302. Period of registration

    (a) Except as otherwise provided in this title, every motor vehicle shall be registered for a period of 12 months from date of issue. Registrations made pursuant to subsections 305(b), 371(b), 376(b), and 376(c) of this title shall expire and the certificate thereof shall become void five years after the date of issue.

    (b) Notwithstanding any other provisions of this title, if registered owners so elect, all their registrations may be issued to expire on the same date and the registration fee shall be pro-rated for the amount in excess of the annual 12 months' fee but not to exceed 24 months. (Amended 1961, No. 54, § 1, eff. April 1, 1962; 1965, No. 70, § 1; 1969, No. 259 (Adj. Sess.), § 6; 1975, No. 90, § 1; 1977, No. 85, § 1, eff. Sept. 1, 1977; 1979, No. 34, § 1, eff. Nov. 1, 1979; 1995, No. 49, § 1, eff. April 20, 1995; 1995, No. 112 (Adj. Sess.), § 3; 1997, No. 39, § 1; 2015, No. 47, § 7.)

  • § 303. Application required

    (a) The Commissioner or his or her duly authorized agent shall register a motor vehicle, trailer, or semi-trailer when application therefor, on a form prescribed by the Commissioner, showing such motor vehicle to be properly equipped and in good mechanical condition, is filed with him or her, accompanied by the required registration fee and evidence of the applicant's ownership of the vehicle in such form as the Commissioner may reasonably require. Except for State or municipal vehicles, registrants and titled owners shall be identical.

    (b) An application for registration may be refused by the Commissioner if it is not accompanied by proof of payment of the use tax imposed by Section 4481 of the Internal Revenue Code of 1986 in such form as may be prescribed by the Secretary of the Treasury or in another form acceptable to the Commissioner in the case of vehicles that are subject to the tax. (Amended 1983, No. 123 (Adj. Sess.), eff. April 2, 1984; 1995, No. 19, § 10, eff. April 17, 1995.)

  • § 304. Registration certificates; number plates; vanity and other special plates

    (a) The Commissioner shall issue to the registrant of a motor vehicle a certificate of registration in the form the Commissioner may prescribe, on which shall appear the name of the registrant, his or her address, a brief description of the vehicle registered, and the date of registration. The Commissioner shall also assign to each motor vehicle registered a distinctive number and issue a number plate or plates showing the assigned number. The number plate or plates issued shall be of the material, size, shape, and color, and with the numerals or letters thereon, the Commissioner may determine, and shall be reflectorized in part or in whole. The certificate and number plates shall be delivered free of charge by the Commissioner to the registrant as soon as may be after receipt and acceptance of application for registration.

    (b) The authority to issue vanity motor vehicle number plates or special number plates for safety organizations and service organizations shall reside with the Commissioner. Determination of compliance with the criteria contained in this section shall be within the discretion of the Commissioner. Series of number plates for safety and service organizations that are authorized by the Commissioner shall be issued in order of approval, subject to the operating considerations in the Department as determined by the Commissioner. The Commissioner shall issue vanity and special organization number plates in the following manner:

    (1) Vanity plates. Subject to the restrictions of this section, vanity plates shall be issued at the request of the registrant of a motor vehicle unless the vehicle is registered under the International Registration Plan, upon application and upon payment of an annual fee of $48.00 in addition to the annual fee for registration. The Commissioner shall not issue two sets of plates bearing the same initials or letters unless the plates also contain a distinguishing number. Vanity plates are subject to reassignment if not renewed within 60 days of expiration of the registration.

    (2) Special organization plates.

    (A) For the purposes of this section:

    (i) "Safety organizations" are groups that provide police and fire protection, rescue squads, the Vermont National Guard, organizations required to respond to public emergencies, and amateur radio operators licensed by the U.S. Federal Communications Commission. To qualify for a special organization plate, safety organizations must have at least 100 in-state members in good standing.

    (ii) "Service organization" includes congressionally chartered or noncongressionally chartered U.S. Military Service veterans' groups and any group that:

    (I) has as a primary purpose service to the community through specific programs for the improvement of public health, education, or environmental awareness and conservation and is not limited to social activities;

    (II) has nonprofit status under Section 501(c)(3) or (10) of the U.S. Internal Revenue Code, as amended;

    (III) is registered as a nonprofit corporation with the Office of the Secretary of State; and

    (IV) except for a military veterans group, has at least 100 in-state members in good standing.

    (B) The officer of a safety organization or service organization may apply to the Commissioner to approve special plates indicating membership in a qualifying organization to be issued to organization members for a $17.00 special fee for each set of plates in addition to the annual fee for registration. The application shall include designation of an officer or member to serve as the principal contact with the Department and a distinctive name or emblem, or both, for use on the proposed special plate. The name and emblem shall not be objectively obscene or confusing to the general public and shall not promote, advertise, or endorse a product, brand, or service provided for sale. The organization's name and emblem must not infringe on or violate a trademark, trade name, service mark, copyright, or other proprietary or property right, and the organization must have the right to use the name and emblem. After consulting with the principal contact, the Commissioner shall determine the design of the special plate on the basis that the primary purpose of motor vehicle number plates is vehicle identification. An organization may have only one design, regardless of the number of individual organizational units, squads, or departments within the State that may conduct the same or substantially similar activities.

    (C) After the plate design is finalized and an officer or the principal contact provides the Commissioner a written statement authorizing issuance of the plates, the organization shall deposit $2,200.00 with the Commissioner. Of this deposit, $500.00 shall be retained by the Department to recover costs of developing the organization plate. Notwithstanding 32 V.S.A. § 502, the Commissioner may charge the actual costs of production of the plates against the fees collected and the balance shall be deposited in the Transportation Fund. Upon application, special plates shall be issued to a registrant of a vehicle registered at the pleasure car rate or of a truck registered for less than 26,001 pounds (but excluding trucks registered under the International Registration Plan) who furnishes the Commissioner satisfactory proof that he or she is a member of an organization that has satisfied the requirements of this subdivision (b)(2). For each of the first 100 applicants to whom sets of plates are issued, the $17.00 special plate fee shall not be collected and shall be subtracted from the balance of the deposit. When the $1,700.00 balance of the deposit is depleted, applicants shall be required to pay the $17.00 fee as provided for in subdivision (2)(B) of this subsection. No organization shall charge its members any additional fee or premium charge for the authorization, right, or privilege to display special number plates, but any organization may recover up to $1,700.00 from applicants for the special plates.

    (D) When an individual's membership in a qualifying organization ceases or is terminated, the individual shall surrender any special registration plates issued under this subsection to the Commissioner forthwith. However, a retired member of the Vermont National Guard may renew or, upon payment of a $10.00 fee, acquire, the special guard plates after notification of eligibility for retired pay has been received.

    (c) The Commissioner shall issue registration numbers 101 through 9999, which shall be known as reserved registration numbers, for pleasure cars, motor trucks that are registered at the pleasure car rate, and motorcycles in the following manner:

    (1) A person holding a reserved registration number may retain the number for the ensuing registration period, provided application is made at least 60 days prior to expiration of the registration.

    (2) If the registrant does not renew the registration, the number may be reassigned to a member of the immediate family if application is made at least 60 days prior to expiration of the registration. As used in this subsection, "immediate family" means the spouse, household member, grandparents, parents, siblings, children, or grandchildren of the registrant.

    (3) The Commissioner shall restrict the issuance of these registrations to residents of this State and may restrict issuance to applicants who do not already have such a registration issued to them.

    (4) A person holding a reserved registration number on a pleasure car, a truck that is registered at the pleasure car rate, or a motorcycle may be issued the same reserved registration number for the other authorized vehicle types, provided that the person receives no more than one such plate or set of plates for each authorized vehicle type.

    (d) Vanity or special organization number plates, whether new or renewed, shall be issued in any combination or succession of numerals and letters, provided the total of the numbers and letters on any plate taken together does not exceed seven, and further provided the requested combination of letters and numerals does not duplicate or resemble a regular issue registration plate. The Commissioner may adopt rules for the issuance of vanity or special organization number plates to ensure that all plates serve the primary purpose of vehicle identification. The Commissioner may revoke any plate described in this subsection and shall not issue plates with combinations of letters or numbers that objectively, in any language:

    (1) are vulgar, scatological, or obscene, or constitute racial or ethnic epithets;

    (2) connote breast, genitalia, pubic area, or buttocks or relate to sexual or eliminatory functions;

    (3) refer to any intoxicant or drug; to the use, nonuse, distribution, or sale of an intoxicant or drug; or to a user, nonuser, or purveyor of an intoxicant or drug;

    (4) refer to gender, gender identity, sexual orientation, or disability status;

    (5) suggest a government or governmental agency;

    (6) suggest a privilege not given by law in this State; or

    (7) form a slang term, abbreviation, phonetic spelling, or mirror image of a word described in subdivisions (1) through (6) of this subsection.

    (e) [Repealed.]

    (f) Upon the request of a registrant of a motor vehicle with the previous issue number plates, the Commissioner shall issue current issue number plates bearing the same number as shown on the previous issue plates that are being replaced. The initial one-time fee for the plates shall be $24.00 in addition to the regular registration fee. Official plates and plates with numbers of 9999 or lower are specifically exempted.

    (g) Number plates bearing the Vermont Coat of Arms may be issued only to the Governor, members of the Vermont congressional delegation and members of the General Assembly.

    (h) The Department, on a quarterly basis, shall provide information to licensed inspection stations for distribution to the owners of motor vehicles during the annual inspection of their motor vehicles. That information shall encourage the proper management of used oil and shall include the telephone number of a recycling hotline that residents may call to determine the availability of a collection service that accepts used oil at the curb or otherwise to find the nearest location to recycle used oil.

    (i) The Department and the Agency of Natural Resources shall work cooperatively regarding opportunities to provide information to the public with respect to the proper management of used oil and shall take appropriate steps to implement efficient and effective information distribution measures mutually agreed upon by the Department and the Agency.

    (j) The Commissioner of Motor Vehicles shall, upon proper application, issue special plates to Vermont veterans, as defined in 38 U.S.C. § 101(2), and to members of the U.S. Armed Forces, as defined in 38 U.S.C. § 101(10), for use on vehicles registered at the pleasure car rate, on vehicles registered at the motorcycle rate, and on trucks registered for less than 26,001 pounds and excluding vehicles registered under the International Registration Plan. The type and style of the plate shall be determined by the Commissioner, except that an American flag, or a veteran- or military-related emblem selected by the Commissioner and the Vermont Office of Veterans' Affairs shall appear on one side of the plate. At a minimum, emblems shall be available to recognize recipients of the Purple Heart, Pearl Harbor survivors, former prisoners of war, and disabled veterans. An applicant shall apply on a form prescribed by the Commissioner, and the applicant's eligibility as a member of one of the groups recognized will be certified by the Office of Veterans' Affairs. The plates shall be reissued only to the original holder of the plates or the surviving spouse. The Commissioner may adopt rules to implement the provisions of this subsection. Except for new or renewed registrations, applications for the issuance of plates under this subsection shall be processed in the order received by the Department subject to normal workflow considerations. The costs associated with developing new emblems shall be borne by the Department of Motor Vehicles.

    (k)(1) The Commissioner of Motor Vehicles shall, upon proper application, issue special gold star and next-of-kin plates for use only on vehicles registered at the pleasure car rate and on trucks registered for less than 26,001 pounds and excluding vehicles registered under the International Registration Plan, as follows:

    (A) Gold star plates shall be issued to the widow or widower, parents, and next of kin as defined in 10 U.S.C. § 1126(d) of members of the U.S. Armed Forces who lost their lives under the circumstances described in 10 U.S.C. § 1126(a).

    (B) Next-of-kin plates shall be issued to the widow or widower, parents, and next of kin as defined in 10 U.S.C. § 1126(d) of members of the Armed Forces not eligible for gold star plates under subdivision (A) of this subdivision (1) who lost their lives while serving on active duty or on active duty for training, or while assigned in a Reserve or National Guard unit in drill status, or as a result of injury or illness incurred during such service or assignment.

    (2) The type and style of the gold star and next-of-kin plates shall be determined by the Commissioner and the Vermont Office of Veterans' Affairs, except that a gold star shall appear on one side of gold star plates and a distinct emblem shall be approved for next-of-kin plates. An applicant shall apply on a form prescribed by the Commissioner, and the applicant's eligibility will be certified by the Office of Veterans' Affairs. A plate shall be reissued only to the original holder of the plate. The Commissioner may adopt rules to implement the provisions of this subsection. Except for new or renewed registrations, applications for the issuance of gold star or next-of-kin plates shall be processed in the order received by the Department subject to normal workflow considerations. (Amended 1961, No. 54, § 2, eff. April 1, 1962; 1965, No. 154, § 1; 1967, No. 129, § 2; 1975, No. 218 (Adj. Sess.), § 7, eff. April 1, 1976; 1977, No. 258 (Adj. Sess.), §§ 1, 2, eff. April 19, 1978; 1979, No. 190 (Adj. Sess.), § 1; 1987, No. 112, § 5; 1987, No. 230 (Adj. Sess.); 1987, No. 241 (Adj. Sess.), § 13; 1989, No. 51, § 11; 1989, No. 82, § 1, eff. Jan. 1, 1990; 1991, No. 178 (Adj. Sess.), § 1, eff. Dec. 1, 1992; 1993, No. 220 (Adj. Sess.), § 2; 1993, No. 233 (Adj. Sess.), § 93, eff. June 21, 1994; 1995, No. 49, § 3, eff. April 20, 1995; 1995, No. 112 (Adj. Sess.), § 4; 1995, No. 189 (Adj. Sess.), § 17; 1997, No. 85 (Adj. Sess.), §§ 1, 2; 1997, No. 85 (Adj. Sess.), § 3, eff. Nov. 11, 1998; 1999, No. 1, § 77c, eff. March 31, 1999; 1999, No. 155 (Adj. Sess.), § 12e; 2001, No. 102 (Adj. Sess.), § 6, eff. May 15, 2002; 2003, No. 109 (Adj. Sess.), §§ 1, 2; 2003, No. 160 (Adj. Sess.), § 62, eff. June 9, 2004; 2005, No. 175 (Adj. Sess.), § 27; 2007, No. 61, § 3; 2007, No. 181 (Adj. Sess.), §§ 1-3, eff. May 30, 2008; 2009, No. 50, § 37; 2011, No. 46, § 3; 2011, No. 128 (Adj. Sess.), § 11; 2011, No. 164 (Adj. Sess.), § 12; 2013, No. 189 (Adj. Sess.), § 2; 2015, No. 159 (Adj. Sess.), § 8; 2019, No. 131 (Adj. Sess.), § 139.)

  • § 304a. Special registration plates and placards for individuals with disabilities

    (a) As used in this section:

    (1) "Ambulatory disability" means an impairment that prevents or impedes walking. An individual shall be considered to have an ambulatory disability if he or she:

    (A) cannot walk 200 feet without stopping to rest;

    (B) cannot walk without the use of, or assistance from, a brace, cane, crutch, another individual, prosthetic device, wheelchair, or other assistive device;

    (C) is restricted by lung disease to such an extent that the individual's forced (respiratory) expiratory volume for one second, when measured by spirometry, is less than one liter, or the arterial oxygen tension is less than 60 mm/hg on room air at rest;

    (D) uses portable oxygen;

    (E) has a cardiac condition to the extent that the individual's functional limitations are classified in severity as Class III or Class IV according to standards set by the American Heart Association; or

    (F) is severely limited in his or her ability to walk due to an arthritic, neurological, or orthopedic condition.

    (2) "Blind" means the visual impairment of an individual whose central visual acuity does not exceed 20/200 in the better eye with corrective lenses or whose visual acuity, if better than 20/200, is accompanied by a limit to the field of vision in the better eye to such a degree that its widest diameter subtends an angle of no greater than 20 degrees.

    (3) "Special registration plates" means a registration plate for individuals with disabilities that displays the International Symbol of Access:

    (A) in a color that contrasts with the background; and

    (B) in the same size as the letters or numbers on the plate.

    (4) "Removable windshield placard" means a two-sided, hanger style placard which includes on each side:

    (A) the International Symbol of Access, which is at least three inches in height, centered on the placard, and is a color that contrasts with the placard's background color;

    (B) an identification number;

    (C) a date of expiration; and

    (D) the seal or other identification of the issuing authority.

    (5) "Temporary removable windshield placard" means a two-sided hanger style placard which includes on each side:

    (A) the International Symbol of Access, which is at least three inches in height, centered on the placard, and is a color that contrasts with the placard's background color;

    (B) an identification number;

    (C) a date of expiration; and

    (D) the seal or other identification of the issuing authority.

    (6) "Eligible person" means:

    (A) an individual who is blind or has an ambulatory disability and has been issued a special registration plate or a windshield placard by this State or another state;

    (B) a person who is transporting an individual described in subdivision (A) of this subdivision (6); or

    (C) an individual transporting an individual who is blind or has an ambulatory disability on behalf of an organization that has been issued a special registration plate or a windshield placard by this State or another state for the purpose of transporting an individual who is blind or has an ambulatory disability.

    (b) Special registration plates or removable windshield placards, or both, shall be issued by the Commissioner. The placard shall be issued without a fee to an individual who is blind or has an ambulatory disability. One set of plates shall be issued without additional fees for a vehicle registered or leased to an individual who is blind or has an ambulatory disability or to a parent or guardian of an individual with a permanent disability. The Commissioner shall issue these placards or plates under rules adopted by him or her after proper application has been made to the Commissioner by any person residing within the State. Application forms shall be available on request at the Department of Motor Vehicles.

    (1) Upon application for a special registration plate or removable windshield placard, the Commissioner shall send a form prescribed by him or her to the applicant to be signed and returned by a licensed physician, licensed physician assistant, or licensed advanced practice registered nurse. The Commissioner shall file the form for future reference and issue the placard or plate. A new application shall be submitted every four years in the case of placards and at every third registration renewal for plates but in no case greater than every four years. When a licensed physician, licensed physician assistant, or licensed advanced practice registered nurse has previously certified to the Commissioner that an applicant's condition is both permanent and stable, a special registration plate or placard need not be renewed.

    (2) Upon application of an organization, the Commissioner shall issue special registration plates for a vehicle registered in the applicant's name if the vehicle is primarily used to transport individuals who have an ambulatory disability or are blind. Placards shall also be issued without a fee, upon application in a form prescribed by the Commissioner, to an organization to be used when transporting individuals who have an ambulatory disability or are blind. The plates and placards shall be subject to the restrictions set forth in subdivision (a)(3) of this section.

    (3) An individual with a disability who abuses such privileges or allows individuals not disabled to abuse the privileges provided in this section may have this privilege revoked after suitable notice and opportunity for hearing has been given him or her by the Commissioner. Hearings under the provisions of this section shall be held in accordance with sections 105-107 of this title and shall be subject to review by the Civil Division of the Superior Court of the county where the individual with a disability resides.

    (4) An applicant for a registration plate or placard for individuals with disabilities may request the Civil Division of the Superior Court in the county in which he or she resides to review a decision by the Commissioner to deny his or her application for a special registration plate or placard.

    (5) If the authenticity of the medical need for the special registration is challenged with reasons in writing, the Commissioner may have physicians with the Vermont Department of Health review the medical facts, with the knowledge of the individual with a disability and the licensed physician, licensed physician assistant, or licensed advanced practice registered nurse who filled in the medical form for the special registration, in order to determine eligibility and so notify all concerned of the facts and the recommendations.

    (6) On a form prescribed by the Commissioner, a nonprofit organization that provides volunteer drivers to transport individuals who have an ambulatory disability or are blind may apply to the Commissioner for a placard. Placards shall be marked "volunteer driver." The organization shall ensure proper use of placards and maintain an accurate and complete record of the volunteer drivers to whom the placards are given by the organization. Placards shall be returned to the organization when the volunteer driver is no longer performing that service. Abuse of the privileges provided by the placards may result in the privileges being revoked and the placards repossessed by the Commissioner. Revocation may occur only after suitable notice and opportunity for a hearing. Hearings shall be held in accordance with sections 105-107 of this title.

    (c) Eligible persons may park vehicles with special registration plates or removable windshield placards issued by any state in special parking spaces when:

    (1) the placard is displayed:

    (A) by hanging it from the front windshield rearview mirror in such a manner that it may be viewed from the front and rear of the vehicle; or

    (B) if the vehicle has no rearview mirror, on the dashboard;

    (2) the plate is mounted as provided in section 511 of this title; or

    (3) the plate is mounted or the placard displayed as provided by the law of the jurisdiction where the vehicle is registered.

    (d)(1) Except as otherwise provided in this subsection, an eligible person shall be permitted to park, and to park without fee, for at least 10 continuous days in a parking space or area that is restricted as to the length of time parking is permitted or where parking fees are assessed.

    (2) Notwithstanding the 10-day period in subdivision (1) of this subsection, in the case of a State- or municipally operated parking garage, an eligible person shall be permitted to park, and to park without fee, for at least 24 continuous hours.

    (3) This subsection shall not apply to spaces or areas in which parking, standing, or stopping of all vehicles is prohibited by law or by any parking ban or that are reserved for special vehicles. As a condition to the privilege conferred by this subsection, the vehicle shall display the registration plate or placard issued by the Commissioner, or a special registration license plate or placard issued by any other jurisdiction, in accordance with subsection (c) of this section.

    (e)(1) An individual, other than an eligible person, who for his or her own purposes parks a vehicle in a space for individuals with disabilities shall be subject to a civil penalty of not less than $200.00 for each violation and shall be liable for towing charges.

    (2) An individual, other than an eligible person, who displays a special registration plate or removable windshield placard not issued to him or her under this section and parks a vehicle in a space for individuals with disabilities, shall be subject to a civil penalty of not less than $400.00 for each violation and shall be liable for towing charges.

    (3) A person who violates this section also shall be liable for storage charges not to exceed $12.00 per day, and an artisan's lien may be imposed against the vehicle for payment of the charges assessed.

    (4) The person in charge of the parking space or spaces for individuals with a disability or any duly authorized law enforcement officer shall cause the removal of a vehicle parked in violation of this section.

    (5) A violation of this section shall be considered a traffic violation within the meaning of 4 V.S.A. chapter 29.

    (f) Individuals who have a temporary ambulatory disability may apply for a temporary removable windshield placard to the Commissioner on a form prescribed by him or her. The placard shall be valid for a period of up to six months and displayed as required under the provisions of subsection (c) of this section. The application shall be signed by a licensed physician, licensed physician assistant, or licensed advanced practice registered nurse. The validation period of the temporary placard shall be established on the basis of the written recommendation from a licensed physician, licensed physician assistant, or licensed advanced practice registered nurse. The Commissioner shall adopt rules to implement the provisions of this subsection. (Added 1987, No. 268 (Adj. Sess.), § 9, eff. June 21, 1988; amended 1989, No. 51, § 12; 1989, No. 56; 1991, No. 131 (Adj. Sess.), § 1, eff. Jan. 1, 1993; 1999, No. 34, § 5; 1999, No. 155 (Adj. Sess.), § 1, eff. May 29, 2000; 2003, No. 151 (Adj. Sess.), § 7; 2003, No. 160 (Adj. Sess.), § 60, eff. June 9, 2004; 2005, No. 188 (Adj. Sess.), § 2; 2007, No. 61, § 4; 2009, No. 82 (Adj. Sess.), § 1; 2009, No. 154 (Adj. Sess.), § 238; 2011, No. 62, § 39; 2013, No. 57, § 4; 2013, No. 96 (Adj. Sess.), § 142; 2015, No. 23, § 121; 2015, No. 50, § 7; 2017, No. 71, § 1; 2017, No. 132 (Adj. Sess.), § 7; 2017, No. 206 (Adj. Sess.), § 1; 2019, No. 131 (Adj. Sess.), § 140.)

  • § 304b. Conservation motor vehicle registration plates

    (a) The Commissioner shall, upon application, issue conservation registration plates for use only on vehicles registered at the pleasure car rate, on trucks registered for less than 26,001 pounds, and on vehicles registered to State agencies under section 376 of this title, but excluding vehicles registered under the International Registration Plan. Plates so acquired shall be mounted on the front and rear of the vehicle. The Commissioners of Motor Vehicles and of Fish and Wildlife shall determine the graphic design of the special plates in a manner that serves to enhance the public awareness of the State's interest in restoring and protecting its wildlife and major watershed areas. The Commissioners of Motor Vehicles and of Fish and Wildlife may alter the graphic design of these special plates, provided that plates in use at the time of a design alteration shall remain valid subject to the operator's payment of the annual registration fee. Applicants shall apply on forms prescribed by the Commissioner and shall pay an initial fee of $26.00 in addition to the annual fee for registration. In following years, in addition to the annual registration fee, the holder of a conservation plate shall pay a renewal fee of $26.00. The Commissioner may adopt rules under 3 V.S.A. chapter 25 to implement the provisions of this subsection.

    (b) Initial fees collected under subsection (a) of this section shall be allocated as follows:

    (1) 46 percent to the Transportation Fund.

    (2) 27 percent to the Department of Fish and Wildlife for deposit into the Nongame Wildlife Account created in 10 V.S.A. § 4048.

    (3) 27 percent to the Department of Fish and Wildlife for deposit into the Watershed Management Account created in 10 V.S.A. § 4050.

    (c) Renewal fees collected under subsection (a) of this section shall be allocated as follows:

    (1) 42 percent to the Department of Fish and Wildlife for deposit into the Nongame Wildlife Account created in 10 V.S.A. § 4048.

    (2) 42 percent to the Department of Fish and Wildlife for deposit into the Watershed Management Account created in 10 V.S.A. § 4050.

    (3) 16 percent to the Transportation Fund.

    (d) The Commissioner of Fish and Wildlife is authorized to deposit fees collected by the Department of Fish and Wildlife under subsections (b) and (c) of this section into the Conservation Camp Fund when the fees collected exceed the annual funding needs of the Nongame Wildlife Account and the Watershed Management Account. (Added 1995, No. 189 (Adj. Sess.), § 14, eff. May 22, 1996; amended 1997, No. 59, § 73, eff. June 30, 1997; 1997, No. 85 (Adj. Sess.), § 4; 2003, No. 160 (Adj. Sess.), § 63, eff. June 9, 2004; 2005, No. 58, § 1; 2009, No. 50, § 38; 2011, No. 153 (Adj. Sess.), § 31; 2013, No. 116 (Adj. Sess.), § 9; 2015, No. 159 (Adj. Sess.), § 9; 2017, No. 71, § 2.)

  • § 304c. Motor vehicle registration plates: Building Bright Spaces for Bright Futures Fund

    (a) The Commissioner shall, upon application, issue "Building Bright Spaces for Bright Futures Fund," referred to as "the Bright Futures Fund," registration plates for use only on vehicles registered at the pleasure car rate, on trucks registered for less than 26,001 pounds, on vehicles registered to State agencies under section 376 of this title, and excluding vehicles registered under the International Registration Plan. Plates so acquired shall be mounted on the front and rear of the vehicle. The Commissioner of Motor Vehicles shall utilize the graphic design recommended by the Commissioner for Children and Families for the special plates to enhance the public awareness of the State's interest in supporting children's services. Applicants shall apply on forms prescribed by the Commissioner of Motor Vehicles and shall pay an initial fee of $24.00 in addition to the annual fee for registration. In following years, in addition to the annual registration fee, the holder of a Bright Futures Fund plate shall pay a renewal fee of $24.00. The Commissioner of Motor Vehicles shall adopt rules under 3 V.S.A. chapter 25 to implement the provisions of this subsection.

    (b) Fees collected under subsection (a) of this section shall be allocated as follows:

    (1) 29 percent to the Transportation Fund.

    (2) 71 percent to the Department for Children and Families for deposit in the Bright Futures Fund created in 33 V.S.A. § 3531.

    (c) Renewal fees collected under subsection (a) of this section shall be allocated as follows:

    (1) 79 percent to the Department for Children and Families for deposit in the Bright Futures Fund in 33 V.S.A. § 3531.

    (2) 21 percent to the Transportation Fund.

    (d) The Department of Motor Vehicles shall be charged by the Department of Corrections for the production of the Bright Futures Fund license plates. (Added 2001, No. 142 (Adj. Sess.), § 140; amended 2003, No. 66, § 138a; 2003, No. 160 (Adj. Sess.), § 64, eff. June 9, 2004; 2009, No. 50, § 83; 2015, No. 159 (Adj. Sess.), § 10; 2017, No. 71, § 3; 2019, No. 131 (Adj. Sess.), § 141.)

  • § 305. Registration periods

    (a) The Commissioner of Motor Vehicles shall issue registration certificates, validation stickers, and number plates upon initial registration, and registration certificates and validation stickers for each succeeding renewal period of registration upon payment of the registration fee. Number plates so issued will become void one year from the first day of the month following the month of issue, unless a longer initial registration period is authorized by law or unless this period is extended through renewal. Registrations issued for motor trucks shall become void one year from the first day of the month following the month of issue.

    (b) The Commissioner shall issue a registration certificate, validation sticker, and number plates for each motor vehicle owned by the State, which shall be valid for a period of five years. Such motor vehicle shall be considered properly registered while the issued number plates are attached to the motor vehicle. The Commissioner may replace such number plates when in his or her discretion their condition requires.

    (c) Except as otherwise provided in subsection (d) of this section, no plate is valid unless the validation sticker is affixed to the rear plate in the manner prescribed by the Commissioner in section 511 of this title.

    (d) When a registration for a motor vehicle, snowmobile, motorboat, or all-terrain vehicle is processed electronically, a receipt shall be available electronically and for printing. An electronic or printed receipt shall serve as a temporary registration for 10 days after the date of the transaction. An electronic receipt may be shown to an enforcement officer using a portable electronic device. Use of a portable electronic device to display the receipt does not in itself constitute consent for an officer to access other contents of the device. (Amended 1961, No. 54, § 3, eff. April 1, 1962; 1965, No. 70, § 2; 1967, No. 129, § 3; 1969, No. 259 (Adj. Sess.), § 7; 1971, No. 150 (Adj. Sess.), § 1, eff. Jan. 1, 1973; 1977, No. 85,§§ 2, 3, eff. Sept. 1, 1977; 1979, No. 34, § 2, eff. Nov. 1, 1979; 1985, No. 124 (Adj. Sess.), § 2; 1987, No. 111, § 10; 1993, No. 9, § 1, eff. Feb. 1, 1994; 1995, No. 112 (Adj. Sess.), § 5; 1997, No. 39, § 2; 2001, No. 75 (Adj. Sess.), § 2; 2009, No. 50, § 112; 2009, No. 152 (Adj. Sess.), § 18; 2011, No. 164 (Adj. Sess.), § 2; 2013, No. 57, § 5; 2013, No. 189 (Adj. Sess.), § 3; 2017, No. 71, § 4; 2019, No. 131 (Adj. Sess.), § 142.)

  • § 305a. Repealed. 2015, No. 147 (Adj. Sess.), § 4, eff. May 31, 2016.

  • § 306. Title to number plates

    All number plates shall be the property of the State, and title shall not pass to a person registering a motor vehicle under the provisions of this title. (Amended 2019, No. 131 (Adj. Sess.), § 143.)

  • § 307. Carrying of registration certificate; replacement and corrected certificates

    (a) A person shall not operate a motor vehicle nor draw a trailer or semi-trailer unless all required registration certificates are carried in some easily accessible place in the motor vehicle.

    (b) In case of the loss, mutilation, or destruction of a certificate, the owner of the vehicle described in it shall forthwith notify the Commissioner and remit a fee of $16.00, upon receipt of which the Commissioner shall furnish the owner with a duplicate certificate.

    (c) A corrected registration certificate shall be furnished by the Commissioner upon request and receipt of a fee of $16.00.

    (d) An operator cited for violating subsection (a) of this section with respect to a pleasure car, motorcycle, or truck that could be registered for less than 26,001 pounds shall be subject to a civil penalty of not more than $5.00, which penalty shall be exempt from surcharges under 13 V.S.A. § 7282(a), if he or she is cited within the 14 days following the expiration of the motor vehicle's registration. (Amended 1969, No. 276 (Adj. Sess.), § 2; 1987, No. 241 (Adj. Sess.), § 2; 1989, No. 51, § 13; 2001, No. 102 (Adj. Sess.), § 7, eff. May 15, 2002; 2005, No. 175 (Adj. Sess.), § 28; 2009, No. 50, § 39; 2011, No. 128 (Adj. Sess.), § 12; 2015, No. 159 (Adj. Sess.), § 11; 2017, No. 132 (Adj. Sess.), § 8; 2019, No. 60, § 31.)

  • § 308. Suspension, revocation, and denial of registration; reinstatement fee

    (a) The Commissioner may suspend or revoke the registration of any motor vehicle registered in this State and repossess the number plates assigned to it, when he or she is satisfied that:

    (1) the vehicle has been stolen and that the registrant does not have legal title;

    (2) the vehicle is in such poor mechanical condition as to make its operation and use a menace or danger;

    (3) the vehicle is operated without proper equipment after the owner has been notified to procure and use such equipment as is required by law or Department rules;

    (4) the owner of the motor vehicle has perpetrated some fraud upon the Department of Motor Vehicles;

    (5) the owner of the motor vehicle is a habitual user of alcohol to excess;

    (6) the number plates were erroneously issued;

    (7) suspension or revocation is authorized under any other provision of law; or

    (8) the commercial motor carrier responsible for safety of the vehicle has been prohibited from operating by a federal agency.

    (b) The Commissioner shall deny registration if the applicant fails to disclose material information required, or if the applicant has made a materially false statement on the application, or if the applicant's business is operated, managed, or otherwise controlled or affiliated with a person who is ineligible for registration, including the applicant entity, a relative, family member, corporate officer, or shareholder. A person whose privilege to operate has been suspended in accordance with subsection 3009(b) or 3103(b) of this title or section 110 of this title where the payments were due pursuant to section 3015 or 3106 of this title shall be ineligible for registration. The Department shall deny registration for a vehicle that has been assigned for safety to a commercial motor carrier who has been prohibited from operating by the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration or a carrier whose business is operated, managed, or otherwise controlled or affiliated with a person who is ineligible for registration, including the owner, a relative, family member, corporate officer, or shareholder.

    (c) Prior to terminating the revocation of a registration or reinstating a registration following suspension, the Commissioner shall require payment of a fee equivalent to the fee prescribed in section 675 of this title, except that no such fee shall be imposed if the registration was suspended or revoked following its erroneous issuance by the Commissioner. This fee shall be in addition to any other fee that may be required by law. (Amended 1997, No. 85 (Adj. Sess.), § 5; 2009, No. 39, § 1; 2015, No. 159 (Adj. Sess.), § 12; 2017, No. 83, § 161(4).)

  • § 309. Registering motor vehicle of which applicant is not the owner

    A person who registers or attempts to register a motor vehicle, snowmobile, all-terrain vehicle, or motorboat of which he or she is not the bona fide owner, as defined in section 4 of this title, shall be fined not more than $500.00 or imprisoned not more than two years, or both. (Amended 2001, No. 69, § 2; 2019, No. 131 (Adj. Sess.), § 144.)

  • § 310. Loaning or permitting the use of number plates

    A person shall not loan or permit the use of the number plates assigned by the Commissioner to a motor vehicle owned by such person. (Amended 1971, No. 228 (Adj. Sess.), § 6.)

  • § 311. Permits for nonregisterable vehicles

    (a) The Commissioner, for an annual fee of $2.00 and under such conditions as he or she may prescribe, may permit licensed operators to operate motor vehicles not otherwise registerable across a public highway; however, an unlicensed person may so operate a motorized wheelchair or an electric personal assistive mobility device as defined by this title without obtaining a permit.

    (b) [Repealed.]

    (c) The Commissioner may permit the operation of a specially equipped motor vehicle, not otherwise registerable, by a person with a disability who holds an operator's license permitting the operation of that vehicle. (Added 1963, No. 46, §§ 1, 2, eff. April 19, 1963; amended 1971, No. 228 (Adj. Sess.), § 32; 1977, No. 156 (Adj. Sess.), eff. March 29, 1978; 1983, No. 5; 1989, No. 51, § 14; 2001, No. 91 (Adj. Sess.), § 5; 2013, No. 96 (Adj. Sess.), § 143.)

  • § 312. Temporary registration pending issuance of certificate of title

    (a) In his or her discretion, the Commissioner may issue a temporary registration certificate to a person required to obtain a certificate of title in accordance with chapter 21 of this title upon payment of the registration fee provided in subchapter 2 of this chapter and of the title fee. The temporary registration certificate and the number plate shall be valid for 60 days and shall not be renewed. At the expiration of the temporary registration, a permanent registration certificate and a set of number plates shall be issued, provided that all documents and information required by law are filed with the Commissioner.

    (b) The registration fee paid in accordance with subsection (a) of this section shall not be refunded, except that the fee shall be deemed the fee for the permanent registration, if one is issued, or shall be deemed the fee for an application to register another vehicle, if the title requirements are met during that registration period. Likewise, the title fee shall be deemed the fee for the title, if one is issued, or shall be deemed the fee for an application to title another vehicle. (Added 1975, No. 49, eff. April 15, 1975; amended 1995, No. 112 (Adj. Sess.), § 6; 2017, No. 71, § 5.)

  • § 313. Commercial vehicle operation; denial of registration

    The Commissioner is authorized to refuse registration if a commercial motor vehicle is being operated by a commercial motor carrier that has been prohibited from operating in interstate commerce by an agency with authority to do so under federal law. (Added 2003, No. 26, § 2.)

  • § 314. Commercial motor vehicles; registration; suspension or revocation

    The Commissioner is authorized to suspend or revoke the registration of a commercial motor vehicle if the commercial motor carrier responsible for safety has been prohibited from operating in interstate commerce by an agency with authority to do so under federal law. (Added 2003, No. 26, § 3.)

  • § 321. Procedure upon transfer

    Upon the transfer of ownership of any registered motor vehicle, its registration shall expire. The person in whose name the transferred vehicle was registered shall immediately return to the Commissioner the registration certificate assigned to the transferred vehicle, with the date of transfer and the name and residence of the new owner endorsed on the back. However, the Commissioner may accept any other satisfactory evidence of the date of transfer and new ownership. The transferor shall immediately remove the registration number plates from the transferred vehicle and may attach the registration number plates to another unregistered motor vehicle owned by him or her and the owner or operator shall not, for a period of 60 days, be subject to a civil penalty for the operation of the latter motor vehicle without the proper registration certificate, provided he or she has, within 24 hours of the transfer, made application, as provided in section 323 of this title, for transfer of the registration number plates. If such application for transfer is not so received by the Commissioner, the number plates shall be returned to the Commissioner at the end of five days after the transfer of ownership. (Amended 1975, No. 68, § 1, eff. April 18, 1975; 1987, No. 112, § 8; 2017, No. 71, § 6; 2019, No. 131 (Adj. Sess.), § 145.)

  • § 322. Failure to return certificate upon sale of vehicle

    Except as provided in section 321 of this title, a person shall return to the Commissioner of Motor Vehicles the registration certificate and number plates of any motor vehicle when the vehicle is sold or exchanged by the person, together with the notice of the sale, when required by this subchapter. (Amended 1971, No. 228 (Adj. Sess.), § 7; 1987, No. 112, § 9.)

  • § 323. Transfer fees

    A person who transfers the ownership of a registered motor vehicle to another, upon the filing of a new application and upon the payment of a fee of $25.00, may have registered in his or her name another motor vehicle for the remainder of the registration period without payment of any additional registration fee, provided the proper registration fee of the motor vehicle sought to be registered is the same as the registration fee of the transferred motor vehicle. However, if the proper registration fee of the motor vehicle sought to be registered by such person is greater than the registration fee of the transferred motor vehicle, the applicant shall pay, in addition to such fee of $25.00, the difference between the registration fee of the motor vehicle previously registered and the proper fee for the registration of the motor vehicle sought to be registered. (Amended 1969, No. 276 (Adj. Sess.), § 3; 1975, No. 90, § 2; 1979, No. 202 (Adj. Sess.), § 3, Pt. IV, eff. Sept. 1, 1980; 1989, No. 51, § 15; 2001, No. 102 (Adj. Sess.), § 8, eff. May 15, 2002; 2005, No. 175 (Adj. Sess.), § 29; 2009, No. 50, § 40; 2011, No. 128 (Adj. Sess.), § 13; 2015, No. 159 (Adj. Sess.), § 13.)

  • § 324. Use of old number plates

    When ownership of a motor vehicle is transferred, the transferer may attach the registration number plates to another motor vehicle owned by him or her and register the same in accordance with the provisions of sections 321, 323, and 325 of this title only if such transferred vehicle and such other vehicle are both of the pleasure car type, both motor trucks or tractors, both motor buses, or both motorcycles, except that a pleasure car registration and a truck registration shall be mutually transferable on payment of the difference in registration fees. (Amended 1965, No. 120, § 3; 1975, No. 55.)

  • § 325. Refund of part of old registration fee

    If the registration fee of the motor vehicle sought to be registered is less than the registration fee of the transferred motor vehicle, the Commissioner shall certify to the Commissioner of Finance and Management the facts pertinent to the difference of such registration fees, giving the name of the owner of such motor vehicle, his or her address, the amount of the original registration fee paid, the date of application for transfer, and the correct fee for the motor vehicle sought to be registered. The Commissioner of Finance and Management shall issue his or her warrant in favor of the owner for such percent of the difference in registration fees as the unexpired term bears to the entire registration period, but if a transfer of registration is made before the 15th day of any month, the transfer, for the purpose of the refund, shall be considered as having been made on the first day of such month. If such transfer of registration is made on or after the 15th day of any month, the transfer, for the purpose of the refund, shall be considered as having been made on the first day of the month following such application for transfer. (Amended 1977, No. 85, § 4, eff. Sept. 1, 1977; 1983, No. 195 (Adj. Sess.), § 5(b).)

  • § 326. Refund upon loss of vehicle

    The Commissioner may cancel the registration of a motor vehicle when the owner thereof proves to his or her satisfaction that it has been totally destroyed by fire or, through accident or wear, has become wholly unfit for use and has been dismantled. After the Commissioner cancels the registration and the owner returns to the Commissioner either the registration certificate, or the number plates and the validation sticker, the Commissioner shall certify to the Commissioner of Finance and Management the fact of the cancellation, giving the name of the owner of the motor vehicle, his or her address, the amount of the registration fee paid, and the date of cancellation. The Commissioner of Finance and Management shall issue his or her warrant in favor of the owner for such percent of the registration fee paid as the unexpired term of the registration bears to the entire registration period, but in no case shall the Commissioner retain less than $5.00 of the fee paid. (Amended 1967, No. 129, § 4; 1975, No. 90, § 3; 1983, No. 195 (Adj. Sess.), § 5(b); 2017, No. 206 (Adj. Sess.), § 2.)

  • § 327. Refund when plates not used

    Subject to the conditions set forth in subdivisions (1), (2), and (3) of this section, the Commissioner may cancel the registration of a motor vehicle, snowmobile, or motorboat when the owner returns to the Commissioner either the number plates, if any, or the registration certificate. Upon cancellation of the registration, the Commissioner shall notify the Commissioner of Finance and Management, who shall issue a refund as follows:

    (1) For registrations cancelled prior to the beginning of the registration period, the refund is the full amount of the fee paid, less a charge of $5.00.

    (2) For registrations cancelled within 30 days of the date of issue, the refund is the full amount of the fee paid, less a charge of $5.00. The owner of a motor vehicle must prove to the Commissioner's satisfaction that the number plates have not been used or attached to a motor vehicle.

    (3) For registrations cancelled prior to the beginning of the second year of a two-year registration period, the refund is one-half of the full amount of the two-year fee paid, less a charge of $5.00. (Amended 1967, No. 129, § 5; 1969, No. 276 (Adj. Sess.), § 4; 1987, No. 112, § 6; 2001, No. 75 (Adj. Sess.), § 3; 2015, No. 158 (Adj. Sess.), § 59; 2017, No. 206 (Adj. Sess.), § 3.)

  • § 328. Repealed. 2015, No. 47, § 8.

  • § 329. Refunds paid from motor vehicle fees

    The refunds mentioned in sections 325-327 of this title shall be paid from the fees turned into the State Treasury by the Department of Motor Vehicles. (Amended 2015, No. 47, § 10.)

  • § 330. Transferring number plates

    (a) Upon the transfer of ownership of a vehicle, the registration number plates may be attached to another vehicle that is being leased by the registrant for a period greater than 30 days. The lessor shall become the registrant.

    (b) Upon the termination of a lease of a vehicle, the registration number plates may be attached to another vehicle being leased by the lessee. The lessor of the new vehicle shall become the registrant.

    (c) Upon the termination of a lease of a vehicle, the registration number plates may be attached to a vehicle, including the leased vehicle, being purchased or owned by the lessee. The lessor shall be deleted from the registration.

    (d) For purposes of calculating fees, transactions pursuant to subsections (a) and (c) of this section shall be considered to be new registrations. Transactions pursuant to subsection (b) of this section shall be treated as registration transfers. A lessor shall not gain any rights in or to special number plates or reserved registration numbers through this process nor shall the prohibitions of subdivision 304(c)(3) of this title apply. (Added 1995, No. 97 (Adj. Sess.), § 1, eff. April 10, 1996.)


  • Subchapter 002: Fees and Exemptions
  • § 361. Pleasure cars

    The annual fee for registration of any motor vehicle of the pleasure car type, and all vehicles powered by electricity, shall be $74.00, and the biennial fee shall be $136.00. (Amended 1961, No. 286, § 1; 1981, No. 87, § 6; 1989, No. 51, § 16; 1993, No. 27, § 8; 1995, No. 49, § 2, eff. April 20, 1995; 2001, No. 102 (Adj. Sess.), § 9, eff. May 15, 2002; 2005, No. 175 (Adj. Sess.), § 30; 2009, No. 50, § 41; 2011, No. 128 (Adj. Sess.), § 14; 2015, No. 159 (Adj. Sess.), § 14.)

  • § 362. Specialized fuel motor vehicles and motor buses

    The annual fee for the registration of any "specialized fuel driven motor vehicle" as defined in section 4 of this title and of motor buses as defined in section 3002 of this title shall be one and three-quarters times the amount of the annual fee provided for a motor vehicle of the classification and weight under the terms of this chapter. (Amended 1981, No. 172 (Adj. Sess.), § 2; 1993, No. 212 (Adj. Sess.), § 7; 2007, No. 75, § 33.)

  • § 363. Converted motor vehicle

    When a motor vehicle of the pleasure car type is built over or converted into a motor vehicle designed for carrying merchandise or freight, such motor vehicle shall be registered at the pleasure car rate or at truck rate as the Commissioner may, in his or her discretion, determine.

  • § 364. Motorcycles

    The annual fee for registration of a motorcycle, with or without sidecar, shall be $46.00. (Amended 1981, No. 87, § 7; 1989, No. 51, § 17; 1989, No. 268 (Adj. Sess.), § 2, eff. June 21, 1990; 2001, No. 102 (Adj. Sess.), § 10, eff. May 15, 2002; 2005, No. 175 (Adj. Sess.), § 31; 2009, No. 50, § 42; 2011, No. 128 (Adj. Sess.), § 15; 2015, No. 159 (Adj. Sess.), § 16.)

  • § 364a. Motor-driven cycles: registration; financial responsibility

    (a) The annual fee for registration of a motor-driven cycle shall be $28.00.

    (b) Motor-driven cycle operators shall be subject to the provisions of section 801 of this title, which requires, in certain cases, that proof of financial responsibility be filed with the Commissioner after an accident. (Added 1977, No. 20, § 9; amended 1981, No. 87, § 8; 1989, No. 51, § 18; 2001, No. 102 (Adj. Sess.), § 11, eff. May 15, 2002; 2009, No. 152 (Adj. Sess.), § 19b, eff. Sept. 1, 2010; 2015, No. 159 (Adj. Sess.), § 17.)

  • § 364b. All-surface vehicles; registration

    (a) The annual fee for registration of an all-surface vehicle (ASV) shall be the sum of the fees established by sections 3305 and 3504 of this title, plus $26.00.

    (b) Evidence of the registration shall be a sticker, as determined by the Commissioner, affixed to the plate issued pursuant to chapter 31 of this title. (Added 2007, No. 184 (Adj. Sess.), § 3; amended 2015, No. 159 (Adj. Sess.), § 18.)

  • § 365. Hearse or ambulance

    The annual fee for registration of a hearse or ambulance, except ambulances owned by a municipality and used for police patrol purposes, shall be based on the pleasure car rate.

  • § 366. Repealed. 2015, No. 158 (Adj. Sess.), § 78(1).

  • § 367. Trucks

    (a)(1) The annual fee for registration of tractors, truck-tractors, or motor trucks except truck cranes, truck shovels, road oilers, bituminous distributors, and farm trucks used as specified in subsection (f) of this section shall be based on the total weight of the truck-tractor or motor truck including body and cab plus the heaviest load to be carried. In computing the fees for registration of tractors, truck-tractors, or motor trucks with trailers or semi-trailers attached, except trailers or semi-trailers with a gross weight of less than 6,000 pounds, the fee shall be based upon the weight of the tractor, truck-tractor, or motor truck, the weight of the trailer or semi-trailer, and the weight of the heaviest load to be carried by the combined vehicles. In addition to the fee set out in the following schedule, the fee for vehicles weighing between 10,000 and 25,999 pounds inclusive shall be an additional $35.50; the fee for vehicles weighing between 26,000 and 39,999 pounds inclusive shall be an additional $70.98; the fee for vehicles weighing between 40,000 and 59,999 pounds inclusive shall be an additional $248.48; and the fee for vehicles 60,000 pounds and over shall be an additional $390.48. The fee shall be computed at the following rates per 1,000 pounds of weight determined pursuant to this subdivision and rounded up to the nearest whole dollar, the minimum fee for registering a tractor, truck-tractor, or motor truck to 6,000 pounds shall be the same as for the pleasure car type:

    $15.20 when the weight exceeds 6,000 pounds but does not exceed 8,000 pounds.

    $17.39 when the weight exceeds 8,000 pounds but does not exceed 12,000 pounds.

    $19.17 when the weight exceeds 12,000 pounds but does not exceed 16,000 pounds.

    $20.50 when the weight exceeds 16,000 pounds but does not exceed 20,000 pounds.

    $21.46 when the weight exceeds 20,000 pounds but does not exceed 30,000 pounds.

    $21.92 when the weight exceeds 30,000 pounds but does not exceed 40,000 pounds.

    $22.45 when the weight exceeds 40,000 pounds but does not exceed 50,000 pounds.

    $22.65 when the weight exceeds 50,000 pounds but does not exceed 60,000 pounds.

    $23.42 when the weight exceeds 60,000 pounds but does not exceed 70,000 pounds.

    $24.21 when the weight exceeds 70,000 pounds but does not exceed 80,000 pounds.

    $24.99 when the weight exceeds 80,000 pounds but does not exceed 90,000 pounds.

    (2) Fractions of 1,000 pounds shall be computed at the next highest 1,000 pounds, excepting, however, fractions of hundredweight shall be disregarded.

    (b) The annual fee for registration of a category I special purpose vehicle shall be $178.00, and the annual fee for a category II special purpose vehicle shall be $415.00.

    (c)-(e) [Repealed.]

    (f)(1) The annual fee for registration of a farm truck of a total weight, determined as provided in subsection (a) of this section, used only for the transportation of agricultural products produced on, and material to be used in connection with the operation of, a farm or farms owned, operated, or occupied by the registrant, or motor trucks that are agricultural custom service vehicles as defined in subdivision 4(70) of this title, shall be $40.00 if the total weight is less than 18,000 pounds. If the gross weight is at least 18,000 pounds but is less than 35,000 pounds, the fee shall be $61.00. If the gross weight is at least 35,000 pounds but does not exceed 60,000 pounds, the fee shall be $115.00. If the gross weight exceeds 60,000 pounds but does not exceed 80,000 pounds, the fee shall be $182.50.

    (2) In the event that a farm truck or agricultural custom service vehicle so registered is thereafter registered for general use during the same registration year, the fee or a pro rata portion thereof shall be applied toward the fee for general registration. The provisions of this subdivision shall not apply to licensed cattle and poultry dealers.

    (g) [Repealed.]

    (h) Loader backhoes used primarily for agricultural related purposes are exempt from the provision of this section.

    (i) The annual fee for registration of a truck used for logging shall be determined pursuant to the provisions of subsection (a) of this section. Trucks used for logging shall be those motor vehicles used exclusively for the transportation of harvested forest products from a forested site.

    (j) [Repealed.]  (Amended 1961, No. 286, § 2, eff. Aug. 1, 1961; 1963, No. 223, § 3; 1964, No. 19 (Sp. Sess.), § 2, eff. March 9, 1964; 1965, No. 120, § 1; 1973, No. 156 (Adj. Sess.), § 1, eff. March 15, 1974; 1977, No. 29, eff. April 1, 1977; 1979, No. 46, § 1, eff. April 26, 1979; 1979, No. 196 (Adj. Sess.), eff. May 6, 1980; 1981, No. 87, § 10; 1981, No. 172 (Adj. Sess.), § 3; 1983, No. 112 (Adj. Sess.); 1983, No. 252 (Adj. Sess.), § 1; 1985, No. 85, § 10; 1985, No. 124 (Adj. Sess.), § 4, eff. April 18, 1986; 1987, No. 145 (Adj. Sess.), § 2, eff. May 13, 1988; 1989, No. 51, § 20; 1995, No. 119 (Adj. Sess.), § 1, eff. April 25, 1996; 2001, No. 69, § 10, eff. Jan. 1, 2002; 2001, No. 75 (Adj. Sess.), § 4; 2001, No. 102 (Adj. Sess.), § 12; 2001, No. 139 (Adj. Sess.), § 3, eff. May 15, 2002; 2005, No. 175 (Adj. Sess.), §§ 32, 41; 2009, No. 50, § 43; 2011, No. 128 (Adj. Sess.), § 16; 2015, No. 159 (Adj. Sess.), § 19; 2019, No. 131 (Adj. Sess.), § 146.)

  • § 367a. Special purpose truck plates; penalties

    The misuse of a vehicle registered under the provisions of a special purpose truck plate under the provisions of section 367 of this title shall be a traffic violation as defined in section 2302 of this title and shall be punishable by a civil penalty of $100.00 for a first offense and by a civil penalty of $200.00 for a second offense occurring within 12 months. Upon a conviction for a second offense, the owner shall be required to register the vehicle at the same rate as provided in subsection 367(a) of this title for other commercial trucks. (Added 1995, No. 119 (Adj. Sess.), § 2, eff. April 25, 1996; amended 2019, No. 131 (Adj. Sess.), § 147.)

  • § 367b. Use of wreckers

    A motor truck that is registered as a wrecker may tow a motor vehicle on the highway without the towed vehicle being required to be registered. (Added 2007, No. 20, § 3.)

  • § 368. Misuse of farm registration

    (a) A person shall not operate or move upon a highway a motor truck registered as a farm truck:

    (1) with a gross weight, including load and vehicle, exceeding the weight for which it is registered under section 367 of this title; or

    (2) for any purpose other than the transportation of agricultural products produced on, or materials to be used in connection with the operation of, a farm.

    (b) Any truck operated or moved in violation of this statute shall be required to be registered as a commercial truck and any person in violation of this section shall be assessed a civil penalty of not more than $175.00 for each offense. (Amended 1971, No. 228 (Adj. Sess.), § 8; 1993, No. 65, § 2; 2001, No. 139 (Adj. Sess.), § 4; 2019, No. 131 (Adj. Sess.), § 148.)

  • § 369. Tractors other than farm tractors

    The annual fee for registration of a tractor, except farm tractors as otherwise provided in this chapter, shall be based on the actual weight of such tractor at the same rate as that provided for trucks of like weight under the provisions of this chapter. The minimum fee for registering any tractor shall be $20.00. (Amended 1964, No. 19 (Sp. Sess.), § 3, eff. March 9, 1964; 1975, No. 213 (Adj. Sess.), § 1, eff. April 1, 1976; 1981, No. 87, § 11; 1989, No. 51, § 21; 2001, No. 139 (Adj. Sess.), § 5; 2015, No. 158 (Adj. Sess.), § 79.)

  • § 370. Farm trucks, tractors, and trailers

    (a) Notwithstanding any other provisions of law relating to registration fees for motor vehicles or trailers, farm tractors and farm trailers may be operated on the highway without being subject to a registration fee.

    (b) Subsection (a) of this section shall not be construed to prevent unregistered farm trucks that are not "agricultural custom service vehicles" as defined in subdivision 4(70) of this title when being used exclusively for farm work:

    (1) from being moved upon a highway within the confines of the farm; or

    (2) from being moved upon highways from one farm to another.

    (c) Subsections (a) and (b) of this section shall not be construed to prevent the:

    (1) operation of an unregistered tractor hired by a municipal corporation in the upkeep and maintenance of the highways; or

    (2) operation of a tractor for plowing or removing snow from such highway within such corporation.

    (d) All farm trucks, other than those provided for in subsection (b) of this section, shall be subject to the registration requirements of subsection 367(f) of this title and shall be exempt from the permit requirements of sections 1400 and 1400a of this title, provided the gross weight of the farm truck does not exceed 60,000 pounds and the vehicle is in compliance with the provisions of subsection 1391(a) of this title.

    (e) A farm tractor or a farm trailer shall be exempt from the permit requirements of sections 1400 and 1400a of this title. (Amended 1975, No. 213 (Adj. Sess.), § 2, eff. April 1, 1976; 2001, No. 139 (Adj. Sess.), § 6.)

  • § 371. Trailer and semi-trailer

    (a)(1) The one-year and two-year fees for registration of a trailer or semi-trailer, except a contractor's trailer or farm trailer, shall be as follows:

    (A) $27.00 and $51.00, respectively, when such trailer or semi-trailer has a gross weight of trailer and load of 1,500 pounds or less;

    (B) $52.00 and $102.00, respectively, when such trailer or semi-trailer has a gross weight of trailer and load of more than 1,500 pounds and is drawn by a vehicle of the pleasure car type;

    (C) $52.00 and $102.00, respectively, when such trailer or semi-trailer is drawn by a motor truck or tractor, when such trailer or semi-trailer has a gross weight of more than 1,500 pounds but less than 3,000 pounds;

    (D) $52.00 and $102.00, respectively, when such trailer or semi-trailer is used in combination with a truck-tractor or motor truck registered at the fee provided for combined vehicles under section 367 of this title. Excepting for the fees, the provisions of this subdivision shall not apply to trailer coaches as defined in section 4 of this title nor to modular homes being transported by trailer or semi-trailer.

    (2) The one-year and two-year fees for registration of a contractor's trailer shall be $197.00 and $394.00, respectively.

    (b)(1) A trailer or semi-trailer, except a farm trailer, may be registered for a period of five years for a fee equal to five times the annual fee established by subsection (a) of this section.

    (2) Any registration made for a period of five years shall cost the full fee regardless of the month in which the registration is made, but a five-year registration may be transferred or cancelled in the same manner as an annual registration. (Amended 1963, No. 223, § 4; 1964, No. 19 (Sp. Sess.), § 4, eff. March 9, 1964; 1967, No. 37, § 1; 1975, No. 90, § 4; 1981, No. 87, § 12; 1983, No. 102 (Adj. Sess.), § 2; 1989, No. 51, § 22; 2001, No. 102 (Adj. Sess.), § 13, eff. May 15, 2002; 2005, No. 175 (Adj. Sess.), § 33; 2009, No. 50, § 44; 2011, No. 128 (Adj. Sess.), § 17; 2013, No. 57, § 6; 2015, No. 159 (Adj. Sess.), § 20.)

  • § 371a. Exemptions from registration

    (a) Notwithstanding any other provisions of law relating to registration fees for trailers, the following shall be exempt from registration:

    (1) wood splitters; and

    (2) pole dinkeys.

    (b) When any such trailer is used upon a public highway it shall have attached a red reflector that shall be so displayed as to be clearly visible from the rear, under normal atmospheric conditions, or a reflectorized slow moving vehicle symbol of a standard type approved by the Commissioner.

    (c) A person in violation of this section shall be assessed a civil penalty of not more than $25.00 for each offense. (Added 1981, No. 72; amended 2019, No. 131 (Adj. Sess.), § 149.)

  • § 372. Motor bus

    The annual fee for registration of a motor bus shall be based on the actual weight of such bus, plus passenger carrying capacity at 150 pounds per person, and shall be $2.00 per 100 pounds of such weight, except for motor buses registered under section 372a or 376 of this title. Fractions of a hundred-weight shall be disregarded. The minimum fee for the registration of any motor bus shall be $43.00. (Amended 1981, No. 87, § 13; 1989, No. 51, § 23; 2009, No. 50, § 74; 2015, No. 159 (Adj. Sess.), § 21.)

  • § 372a. Local transit public transportation service

    (a) The annual registration fee for any motor bus used in local transit or public transportation service shall be $62.00, except for those vehicles owned by a municipality for such service that are subject to the provisions of section 376 of this title. In the event a bus registered for local transit or public transportation service is thereafter registered for general use during the same registration year, such fee shall be applied towards the fee for general registration.

    (b) As used in this section, a motor bus used in public transportation service is a motor bus used by a nonprofit public transit system as defined in 24 V.S.A. § 5088(3), and a motor bus used in local transit is a motor bus used entirely within or not more than 100 miles beyond the boundaries of a city or town. (Amended 1989, No. 51, § 24; 2001, No. 102 (Adj. Sess.), § 14, eff. May 15, 2002; 2009, No. 50, § 75; 2015, No. 159 (Adj. Sess.), § 22; 2017, No. 71, § 7; 2017, No. 113 (Adj. Sess.), § 152.)

  • § 373. Exhibition vehicles; year of manufacture plates

    (a) The annual fee for the registration of a motor vehicle that is maintained for use in exhibitions, club activities, parades, and other functions of public interest and that is not used for general daily transportation of passengers or property on any highway shall be $21.00, in lieu of fees otherwise provided by law. Permitted use shall include:

    (1) use in exhibitions, club activities, parades, and other functions of public interest; and

    (2) occasional transportation of passengers or property not more than one day per week.

    (b) Pursuant to the provisions of section 304 of this title, one registration plate shall be issued to those vehicles registered under subsection (a) of this section.

    (c) Vermont registration plates issued prior to 1968 may be displayed on a motor vehicle registered under this section instead of the plate issued under this section, if the issued plate is maintained within the vehicle and produced upon request of any enforcement officer as defined in subdivision 4(11) of this title. (Amended 1981, No. 87, § 14; 1989, No. 51, § 25; 1989, No. 82, § 2; 2001, No. 102 (Adj. Sess.), § 15, eff. May 15, 2002; 2009, No. 50, § 96; 2015, No. 158 (Adj. Sess.), § 60; 2015, No. 159 (Adj. Sess.), § 23; 2017, No. 71, § 8.)

  • § 374. Jitney

    The annual fee for registration of a jitney designed to carry not more than seven persons, including the operator, shall be the same as is required for the registration of a motor vehicle of the pleasure car type. When a jitney is designed to carry more than seven passengers, including the operator, the fee shall be the same as is required for the registration of a motor bus of like passenger carrying capacity.

  • § 375. Repealed. 1971, No. 150 (Adj. Sess.), § 3, eff. Jan. 1, 1973.

  • § 376. State, municipal, fire department, and rescue organization motor vehicles

    (a) A fee shall not be charged for registration of motor vehicles owned by the State.

    (b) The fee for registration of a motor vehicle owned by any municipality in this State and used entirely by it or any other municipality for municipal purposes shall be $12.00 in lieu of fees otherwise specified in this chapter. As used in this subsection, the term municipality shall include county-owned vehicles. The Commissioner shall issue specially designed registration plates for county-owned sheriffs' departments' vehicles.

    (c) The registration fee for registration of a motor truck, trailer, ambulance, or other motor vehicle, owned by a volunteer fire department or other volunteer fire fighting organization or other organization conducting rescue operations and used solely for fire fighting or rescue purposes shall be $12.00 in lieu of fees otherwise specified in this chapter. A motor vehicle or trailer registered under this section shall be plainly marked on both sides of the body or cab to indicate its ownership.

    (d) The use of a school bus owned by a municipality in this State, whether or not that use is compensated, shall be considered a municipal purpose within the meaning of this section.

    (e) [Repealed.]

    (f) A replacement registration plate shall be provided by the Commissioner upon the payment of a fee of $9.00.

    (g)(1) The fee for registration of a motor vehicle obtained from the government as excess government property, or a vehicle purchased with 100 percent federal funds and used for federally supported local programs, shall be $14.00, in lieu of fees otherwise specified in this chapter. The Commissioner shall determine the eligibility as to whether or not the motor vehicle qualifies for this registration and ownership of the vehicle shall be plainly marked on both sides of the body or cab.

    (2) The registration of a vehicle used for other than federally supported local programs shall be revoked. (Amended 1961, No. 50, eff. April 1, 1962; 1963, No. 190; 1967, No. 129, § 10; 1971, No. 150 (Adj. Sess.), § 2, eff. Jan. 1, 1973; 1975, No. 192 (Adj. Sess.), § 2; 1977, No. 258 (Adj. Sess.), § 3, eff. April 19, 1978; 1979, No. 42; 1979, No. 190 (Adj. Sess.), § 2; 1981, No. 87, § 15; 1989, No. 51, § 26; 1989, No. 82, § 3, eff. Jan. 1, 1990; 1997, No. 39, § 6; 2015, No. 159 (Adj. Sess.), § 24.)

  • § 377. Government-owned vehicles

    The Commissioner shall have authority to issue registration certificates and registration number plates without charge to passenger car vehicles, not otherwise required to be registered under the provisions of this title, owned by the U.S. government, other states, or provinces. (Amended 2019, No. 131 (Adj. Sess.), § 150.)

  • § 378. Veterans' exemptions

    No fees shall be charged an honorably discharged veteran of the U.S. Armed Forces who is a resident of the State of Vermont for the registration of a motor vehicle that the veteran has acquired with financial assistance from the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs, or for the registration of a motor vehicle owned by him or her during his or her lifetime obtained as a replacement thereof, when his or her application is accompanied by a copy of an approved VA Form 21-4502 issued by the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs certifying him or her to be entitled to the financial assistance. (Amended 1975, No. 38, § 1; 2017, No. 206 (Adj. Sess.), § 4.)

  • §§ 379, 380. Repealed. 1979, No. 34, § 4, eff. Nov. 1, 1979.

  • § 381. Fees turned over to State Treasurer

    (a) Except as otherwise provided, all fees for registering motor vehicles, licensing operators, and all other motor vehicle fees shall be collected by the Commissioner and forthwith paid into the State Treasury or deposited to such bank to the credit of the State Treasurer as he or she may direct.

    (b)-(d) [Repealed.]

    (e) Whenever a payment is received that is less than, but within $0.99 of, the required fee, the transaction shall be processed. The Commissioner may determine that action will not be taken to collect the missing portion of the fee. When a payment up to $1.00 greater than the required fee is received, the excess shall not be refunded. (Amended 1987, No. 89, § 309; 1987, No. 241 (Adj. Sess.), § 12; 1991, No. 89; 1997, No. 61, § 240; 2011, No. 164 (Adj. Sess.), § 3.)

  • § 382. Diesel-powered pleasure cars

    Notwithstanding any other provision of law, the annual registration fee for a pleasure car or tractor, truck-tractor, or motor truck up to 6,000 pounds powered by fuel as defined in section 3002 of this title shall be $74.00, and the biennial fee shall be $136.00. (Added 1999, No. 154 (Adj. Sess.), § 10; amended 2015, No. 159 (Adj. Sess.), § 25.)


  • Subchapter 003: Nonresident and Zone Registration
  • § 411. Repealed. 2015, No. 158 (Adj. Sess.), § 62.

  • § 412. Repealed. 1975, No. 218 (Adj. Sess.), § 6, eff. Oct. 1, 1976.

  • § 412a. Repealed. 2011, No. 46, § 17.

  • § 413. Repealed. 2015, No. 50, § 29.

  • § 414. Special permits for foreign public utilities

    The Commissioner may issue to public utilities operating in this State, for a nominal fee, a special permit for vehicles engaged in emergency repair work in this State, provided such vehicles are registered in some other state, have registration plates attached, and are driven by an individual licensed to operate motor vehicles in this or some other state. (Amended 2019, No. 131 (Adj. Sess.), § 151.)

  • § 415. Nondiesel fuel user's license

    (a) In addition to any other provision of law relating to registration of motor trucks with a gross weight of 18,000 pounds or over and powered by gasoline or any other nondiesel fuel, or fees paid therefor, a person owning or operating a motor truck upon the highways of the State, registered in this State, shall apply to the Commissioner of Motor Vehicles for a nondiesel fuel user's license for each such motor truck to be so operated. Application shall be made upon a form prescribed by such Commissioner and shall set forth such information as the Commissioner may require. The application shall be accompanied by a license fee of $6.50 for each motor truck listed in the application. However, any license issued under this section prior to July 1, 1990 shall remain in effect for the term of the issuance. The Commissioner shall issue a license and an identification tag, plate, or sticker for each such motor truck, which tag, plate, or sticker shall be of such size and design and contain such information as the Commissioner shall prescribe. Except as otherwise provided, any such license and tag, plate, or sticker shall become void on January 1 next following the date of issue. Such licenses shall be carried in the motor truck, and the tag, plate, or sticker shall be affixed to said motor truck and at all times be visible and legible. This section shall not apply to motor trucks owned by federal, State, provincial, or municipal governments nor to motor trucks, otherwise required to be licensed under this section, that are being operated under the provisions of sections 463 or 516 of this title.

    (b) A person owning or operating a motor truck as defined in subsection (a) of this section that is registered in this State and for which the fees required under section 367 of this title have been paid shall not be required to obtain the license or pay the fee as required in subsection 367(a) of this title until his or her next registration renewal and annually thereafter.

    (c) [Repealed.]

    (d) Upon approval of the Commissioner, one-way rental vehicles with a gross vehicle weight of 26,000 pounds or less are exempt from carrying the nondiesel fuel user's license in the motor vehicle and are exempt from displaying the identification tag, plate, or sticker on or in the motor vehicle. (Amended 1969, No. 214 (Adj. Sess.), eff. March 25, 1970; 1971, No. 226 (Adj. Sess.), § 1; 1975, No. 218 (Adj. Sess.), § 1, eff. Oct. 1, 1976; 1977, No. 12, § 1, eff. March 14, 1977; 1981, No. 87, § 18, eff. June 1, 1981; 1981, No. 172 (Adj. Sess.), § 4; 1985, No. 58, § 10; 1985, No. 124 (Adj. Sess.), § 10, eff. April 18, 1986; 1987, No. 109, § 1; 1987, No. 283 (Adj. Sess.), § 1; 1989, No. 46, § 1, eff. May 5, 1989; 1989, No. 51, § 27; 1989, No. 51, § 27a, eff. July 1, 1990; 1991, No. 137 (Adj. Sess.), § 1; 1993, No. 210 (Adj. Sess.), § 256a; 1993, No. 212 (Adj. Sess.), § 8; 2013, No. 189 (Adj. Sess.), § 15.)

  • § 415a. Repealed. 1981, No. 172 (Adj. Sess.), § 5, eff. Dec. 1, 1982.

  • § 416. Suspension and revocation

    The Commissioner, for cause, may deny a permit or suspend or revoke any permit issued by him or her. Hearings on any action by the Commissioner under this section may be had pursuant to the provisions of sections 105-107 of this title.

  • §§ 417-419. Repealed. 2013, No. 189 (Adj. Sess.), § 27.

  • § 420. Motor truck defined

    As used in sections 415, 416, 420, and 421 of this title, the words "motor truck" shall include any motor vehicle having a gross weight of 18,000 pounds or over, designed and used for the transportation of merchandise or freight.

  • § 421. Penalties

    (a) It shall be unlawful for any person:

    (1) to operate a motor truck subject to the provisions of this chapter upon any public highway in the State without first obtaining the license and tag, plate, or marker required under section 415 of this title or to so operate without carrying the license and displaying the tag, plate, or marker if issued;

    (2) [Repealed.]

    (3) to fail to file any return or report required by the Commissioner; or

    (4) to make a false return or fail to keep records of operations as may be required by the Commissioner.

    (b) Any person who violates any provision of subsection (a) of this section, upon first conviction, shall be punishable by a civil penalty of not less than $100.00 or more than $250.00; and upon a second or subsequent conviction of a violation occurring within one year after a previous conviction of any provision of subsection (a), by a fine of not less than $250.00 or more than $500.00 or by imprisonment for not more than 30 days, or both. (Amended 1975, No. 218 (Adj. Sess.), § 5, eff. Oct. 1, 1976; 1977, No. 12, § 4, eff. March 14, 1977; 1979, No. 34, § 5, eff. Nov. 1, 1979; 1981 (Adj. Sess.), No. 172, § 8, eff. March 1, 1983; 1985, No. 58, § 8; 2013, No. 189 (Adj. Sess.), § 28; 2019, No. 131 (Adj. Sess.), § 152.)

  • § 422. Repealed. 2013, No. 189 (Adj. Sess.), § 27.

  • § 423. Repealed. 2015, No. 158 (Adj. Sess.), § 78(2).


  • Subchapter 004: Registration of Dealers and Transporters
  • § 450. Definition

    As used in this subchapter, "vehicle or motorboat" means a motor vehicle, snowmobile, motorboat, or all-terrain vehicle. (Added 2015, No. 50, § 2.)

  • § 450a. Dealer registration; eligibility

    (a) A person shall not be eligible to register as a dealer unless the person:

    (1) Has no previous record of willful violations of dealer laws or regulations in this or any other jurisdiction.

    (2) For initial and renewal applicants, has not had a conviction or been incarcerated for a conviction for extortion, forgery, fraud, larceny, or embezzlement in this or any other jurisdiction within the 10 years prior to the application.

    (3) Has no unsatisfied judgments against the person arising out of violations of consumer protection laws in Vermont or any other jurisdiction.

    (4) Owns real estate (as defined in 1 V.S.A. § 132) as his or her place of business or has a lease with an expiration date not earlier than the last day of the registration year for which registration is sought under the provisions of this subchapter, which includes a building of at least 1,200 square feet in size used primarily for the business of the dealership. The building shall have adequate facilities for the maintenance of the records required by law to be kept including those required by section 466 of this title.

    (b) In addition to the requirements of subsection (a) of this section, a person shall not be eligible to register as a dealer in cars, motor trucks, motorcycles, or motor-driven cycles unless the person presents proof of compliance with the provisions of section 800 of this title at the time application for registration is made.

    (c) In addition to the requirements of subsections (a) and (b) of this section, a person shall not be eligible to register as a dealer in cars or motor trucks unless the person is open for business at least 146 days during the calendar year. The applicant shall provide the Commissioner with the hours of operation of the business that the person shall maintain during the registration period at the time of the application. (Added 2015, No. 50, § 2.)

  • § 451. Dealer's certificate

    (a) Instead of registering each motor vehicle owned by him or her, a dealer may apply under oath to the Commissioner, upon forms prescribed and furnished by the Commissioner for that purpose, and accompanied by such additional information and certifications as the Commissioner may reasonably require, for a general distinguishing number for such motor vehicles. If the Commissioner is satisfied that the applicant meets all the requirements of section 4 and chapter 7 of this title and is qualified to engage in such business, the Commissioner may issue to the applicant a certificate of registration containing the name, place of residence, and address of such applicant, the general distinguishing number assigned, and such additional information as the Commissioner may determine. If a dealer has a place of business or agency in more than one city or town, he or she shall file an application and secure a certificate of registration for each place of business or agency. The place of business or agency shall mean a place in any town where motor vehicles owned by a dealer are regularly kept or exposed for sale in the custody or control of the dealer or a salesman, employee, or agent of such dealer. In his or her discretion, the Commissioner may assign the same distinguishing number with more than one certificate to any dealer who has separate places of business within the same or an adjacent city or town within Vermont. The Commissioner may allow a dealer having one distinguishing number with more than one certificate to maintain only one central area for the maintenance of records required by law to be kept, including those required by section 466 of this title and for the transfer of motor vehicles. This location must be in Vermont and must be disclosed on the application prior to approval and may be changed only with the approval of the Commissioner or his or her agent. Dealer registration plates shall contain letters indicating the type of dealer certificate issued before the distinguishing number.

    (b) With the prior approval of the Commissioner, a Vermont dealer may display vehicles on a temporary basis, but in no instance for more than 14 consecutive days, at a fair, show, exhibition, or other off-site location. New vehicles may only be displayed off-site within the manufacturer's stated area of responsibility in the franchise agreement. No sales may be transacted at these off-site locations. A dealer desiring to display vehicles temporarily at an off-site location shall notify the Commissioner in a manner prescribed by the Commissioner no less than two days prior to the first day for which approval is requested.

    (c) A dealer in new or used motor vehicles may temporarily transfer possession of a vehicle owned by the dealer on consignment to a registered auction dealer or Vermont licensed auctioneer to be sold at public or private wholesale auction by the auction dealer or Vermont licensed auctioneer.

    (d) The issuance of snowmobile, motorboat, and all-terrain vehicle dealer registrations are governed by this chapter and sections 3204, 3305, and 3504 of this title, respectively. (Amended 1965, No. 204, § 2; 1995, No. 19, § 11, eff. April 17, 1995; 1995, No. 112 (Adj. Sess.), § 7, eff. April 22, 1996; 1999, No. 31, § 3; 2013, No. 57, § 8; 2015, No. 50, § 2.)

  • § 452. Expiration

    Unless otherwise specifically provided or unless canceled, revoked, or suspended, dealers' registrations and certificates shall become void one year from the first day of the month of issue. The Commissioner may renew dealer registrations for two years and may stagger expiration dates. (Amended 1965, No. 70, § 5; 1999, No. 31, § 4.)

  • § 453. Fees and number plates

    (a)(1) An application for registration as a dealer in new or used cars or motor trucks shall be accompanied by a fee of $503.00 for each certificate issued in such dealer's name. The Commissioner shall furnish free of charge with each dealer's registration certificate three number plates showing the distinguishing number assigned such dealer. The Commissioner may furnish additional plates according to the volume of the dealer's sales in the prior year or, in the case of an initial registration, according to the dealer's reasonable estimate of expected sales, as follows:

    (A) under 20 sales: 0 additional plates;

    (B) 20-49 sales: 1 additional plate;

    (C) 50-99 sales: up to 5 additional plates;

    (D) 100-249 sales: up to 12 additional plates;

    (E) 250-499 sales: up to 17 additional plates;

    (F) 500-749 sales: up to 27 additional plates;

    (G) 750-999 sales: up to 37 additional plates;

    (H) 1,000-1,499 sales: up to 47 additional plates;

    (I) 1,500 or more: up to 57 additional plates.

    (2) If the issuance of additional plates is authorized under subdivision (1) of this subsection, up to two plates shall be provided free of charge, and the Commissioner shall collect $55.00 for each additional plate thereafter.

    (b) Application by a "dealer in farm tractors or other self-propelled farm implements," which shall mean a person actively engaged in the business of selling or exchanging new or used farm tractors or other self-propelled farm implements, for such dealer registration shall annually be accompanied by a fee of $78.00. The Commissioner shall furnish free of charge with each such dealer registration certificate two sets of number plates showing the distinguishing number assigned such dealer and in his or her discretion may furnish further sets of plates at a fee of $12.00 per set; such number plates may, however, be displayed only upon a farm tractor or other self-propelled farm implement.

    (c) Application by a "dealer in motorized highway building equipment and road making appliances," which shall mean a person actively engaged in the business of selling or exchanging new or used motorized highway building equipment or road making appliances, for such dealer registration shall annually be accompanied by a fee of $123.00. The Commissioner shall furnish free of charge with each such dealer registration certificate two sets of number plates showing the distinguishing number assigned such dealer and in his or her discretion may furnish further sets of plates at a fee of $30.00 per set; such number plates may, however, be displayed only upon motorized highway building equipment or road making appliances.

    (d) If a dealer is engaged only in the business of selling or exchanging motorcycles or motor-driven cycles, the registration fee shall be $62.00, which shall include three number plates. The Commissioner may, in his or her discretion, furnish further sets of plates at a fee of $10.00 for each set.

    (e) If a dealer is engaged only in the business of selling or exchanging trailers, semi-trailers, or trailer coaches, the registration fee shall be $123.00, which shall include three number plates; such number plates may, however, be displayed only upon a trailer, semi-trailer, or trailer coach. The Commissioner may, in his or her discretion, furnish further plates at a fee of $10.00 for each such plate.

    (f) In any year that number plates are reused and validation stickers are issued, the Commissioner shall not be required to issue new number plates to persons renewing registrations under this section.

    (g) The Commissioner of Motor Vehicles shall not issue a dealer's certificate of registration to a dealer in new or used motor vehicles, unless the dealer has provided the Commissioner with a surety bond, letter of credit, or certificate of deposit issued by an entity authorized to transact business in the same state. The amount of such surety bond, letter of credit, or certificate of deposit shall be between $20,000.00 and $35,000.00, based on the number of new or used units sold in the previous year; such schedule is to be determined by the Commissioner of Motor Vehicles. In the case of a certificate of deposit, it shall be issued in the name of the dealer and assigned to the Commissioner or his or her designee. The bond, letter of credit, or certificate of deposit shall serve as indemnification for any monetary loss suffered by the State or by a purchaser of a motor vehicle by reason of the dealer's failure to remit to the Commissioner any fees collected by the dealer under the provisions of chapters 7 and 21 of this title or by a dealer's failure to remit to the Commissioner any tax collected by the dealer under 32 V.S.A. chapter 219. This State or the motor vehicle owner who suffers such loss or damage shall have the right to claim against the surety upon the bond or against the letter of credit or certificate of deposit. The bond, letter of credit, or certificate of deposit shall remain in effect for the pending registration year and one year thereafter. The liability of any such surety or claim against the letter of credit or certificate of deposit shall be limited to the amount of the fees or tax collected by the dealer under chapters 7 and 21 of this title or 32 V.S.A. chapter 219 and not remitted to the Commissioner.

    (h) Applications by a snowmobile, motorboat, or all-terrain vehicle dealer shall be accompanied by the fees prescribed in sections 3204, 3305, and 3504 of this title, respectively. (Amended 1961, No. 286, § 4; 1967, No. 129, § 6; 1977, No. 81, § 3, eff. April 27, 1977; 1981, No. 87, § 16; 1987, No. 190 (Adj. Sess.), § 2; 1989, No. 51, § 29; 2001, No. 102 (Adj. Sess.), § 16, eff. May 15, 2002; 2009, No. 152 (Adj. Sess.), § 13; 2009, No. 152 (Adj. Sess.), § 19c, eff. Sept. 1, 2010; 2013, No. 189 (Adj. Sess.), § 29; 2015, No. 50, § 2; 2015, No. 159 (Adj. Sess.), § 26.)

  • § 454. Dealer's use of vehicles or motorboats

    (a) A motor vehicle owned by a dealer may be operated, while so owned, under the distinguishing number assigned to him or her as provided in this subchapter, for the following purposes and uses:

    (1) For the purpose of testing or adjusting the vehicle in the immediate vicinity of his or her place of business.

    (2) For some purpose directly connected with the dealer business, purchasing, selling, or exchanging motor vehicles by the dealer. The words "directly connected" for the purposes of this subdivision shall not be construed to include towing service unless the disabled vehicle is being towed to or from the dealer's place of business for repair purposes, nor shall it include the transport of crushed vehicles unless all of the vehicles being so transported are properly recorded in the records of the dealer as required by section 466 of this title.

    (3) For a demonstration when the prospective purchaser is operating the vehicle, and then only for a period not to exceed three days.

    (4) For the temporary accommodation of a customer of the dealer when a motor vehicle properly registered under the law of the state of residence of the customer, because of accident or wear, is disabled and is left with the dealer for repairs and then only for a period not exceeding seven days.

    (5) For the private pleasure use of the dealer and members of his or her immediate family residing in the same household.

    (6) For the use of the vehicles at funerals or in public parades when no charge or rental is made for the use.

    (b) The word "dealer" for the purposes of subdivision (a)(5) of this section shall include such of the principal officers of a corporation registered as dealer and such of the partners in a co-partnership registered as dealer as are actively and principally engaged in the motor vehicle business and in any event shall include only those persons listed on the application for a registered dealer submitted to the Department, but shall not include directors and stockholders nor inactive and silent partners.

    (c) A snowmobile, motorboat, or all-terrain vehicle dealer may only use a dealer's number plate or dealer registration number in accordance with sections 3204, 3305, and 3504 of this title, respectively. (Amended 1965, No. 204, § 9; 1975, No. 218 (Adj. Sess.), §§ 7a, 7b, eff. April 1, 1976; 1995, No. 112 (Adj. Sess.), § 8, eff. April 22, 1996; 2015, No. 50, § 2.)

  • § 455. Use by others than dealer

    A person, other than a dealer, shall not operate a motor vehicle under the provisions of section 454 of this title unless such person carries a written authority so to do signed by the dealer whose motor vehicle such person is operating.

  • § 456. Employees' use of vehicles, motorboats restricted

    Employees of a dealer shall not operate, and a dealer shall not permit them to operate, vehicles or motorboats with dealer's registration number plates or registration numbers displayed thereon, except for business purposes of the dealer, or in traveling directly between their homes and the place of their employer's business. (Amended 1995, No. 112 (Adj. Sess.), § 9, eff. April 22, 1996; 2015, No. 50, § 2.)

  • § 457. Temporary plates

    At the time of the issuance of a registration certificate to a dealer as provided in this chapter, the Commissioner shall furnish the dealer with a sufficient number of number plates and temporary validation stickers, temporary number plates, or temporary decals for use during the 60-day period immediately following sale of a vehicle or motorboat by the dealer. The plates and decals shall have the same general design as the plates or decals furnished individual owners, but the plates and decals may be of a material and color as the Commissioner may determine. The Commissioner shall collect a fee of $5.00 for each temporary plate issued. (Amended 1967, No. 356 (Adj. Sess.), § 2; 1969, No. 276 (Adj. Sess.), § 5; 1975, No. 68, § 2, eff. April 18, 1975; 1985, No. 30, § 1; 1989, No. 51, § 30; 1997, No. 39, § 3; 2001, No. 102 (Adj. Sess.), § 17, eff. May 15, 2002; 2015, No. 47, § 11; 2015, No. 159 (Adj. Sess.), § 27.)

  • § 458. Temporary plate on sold or exchanged vehicles

    On the day of the sale or exchange of a motor vehicle, motorboat, snowmobile, or all-terrain vehicle to be registered in this State, a dealer may issue to the purchaser, for attachment to the motor vehicle, snowmobile, or all-terrain vehicle, or to be carried in or on the motorboat, a number plate with temporary validation stickers, a temporary number plate, or a temporary decal, provided that the purchaser deposits with such dealer, for transmission to the Commissioner, a properly executed application for the registration of such motor vehicle, motorboat, snowmobile, or all-terrain vehicle and the required fee. If a properly licensed purchaser either attaches to the motor vehicle, snowmobile, or all-terrain vehicle or carries in the motorboat such number plate or decal, he or she may operate the same for a period not to exceed 60 consecutive days immediately following the purchase. An individual shall not operate a motor vehicle, motorboat, snowmobile, or all-terrain vehicle with a number plate with temporary validation stickers, a temporary number plate, or a temporary decal attached to the motor vehicle or carried in the motorboat except as provided in this section. (Amended 1967, No. 356 (Adj. Sess.), § 3; 1975, No. 68, § 3, eff. April 18, 1975; 1997, No. 39, § 4; 2015, No. 47, § 12; 2019, No. 131 (Adj. Sess.), § 153.)

  • § 459. Notice, application, and fees to Commissioner

    (a) Upon issuing a number plate with temporary validation stickers, a temporary number plate, or a temporary decal to a purchaser, a dealer shall have 15 calendar days, or up to 30 calendar days as applicable pursuant to subsection 2015(b) of this title, to forward to the Commissioner the application and fee, deposited with him or her by the purchaser, together with notice of such issue and such other information as the Commissioner may require.

    (b) If a number plate with temporary validation stickers, a temporary registration plate, or a temporary decal is not issued by a dealer in connection with the sale or exchange of a vehicle or motorboat, the dealer may accept from the purchaser a properly executed registration, tax, and title application and the required fees for transmission to the Commissioner. The dealer shall have 15 calendar days, or up to 30 calendar days as applicable pursuant to subsection 2015(b) of this title, to forward to the Commissioner the application and fee together with such other information as the Commissioner may require. (Amended 1987, No. 190 (Adj. Sess.), § 3; 1999, No. 31, § 5; 2009, No. 152 (Adj. Sess.), § 13; 2015, No. 47, § 13; 2019, No. 60, § 21.)

  • § 460. Dealer's use of temporary plates restricted

    A dealer shall not use, attach, or issue temporary number plates except as provided in sections 458, 459, and 463 of this title.

  • § 461. Destruction of temporary plates

    Unless otherwise directed by the Commissioner, at the expiration of the period of 60 days, the purchaser shall destroy the temporary number plates. (Amended 1967, No. 356 (Adj. Sess.), § 4; 1975, No. 68, § 4, eff. April 18, 1975; 1997, No. 39, § 5.)

  • § 462. Cancellation, revocation, or suspension of dealer's registration

    (a) The Commissioner may cancel, revoke, or suspend the registration of a dealer under the provisions of this chapter or section 3204, 3305, or 3504 of this title whenever, after the dealer has been afforded the opportunity of a hearing before the Commissioner or upon conviction in any court in any jurisdiction, it appears that the dealer has willfully violated any vehicle or motorboat law of this State or any lawful regulation of the Commissioner applying to dealers, or when it appears that the dealer has engaged in fraudulent or unlawful practices related to the purchase, sale, or exchange of vehicles or motorboats. A dealer whose registration has been canceled, revoked, or suspended shall forthwith return to the Commissioner the registration certificate and any and all number plates or numbers or decals furnished him or her by the Commissioner, and the privilege to operate, purchase, sell, or exchange vehicles or motorboats under his or her dealer's number shall cease. An application for a new dealer's registration for that dealer will not be considered until a revocation period has been served.

    (b) A fee of $30.00 shall be paid to the Commissioner prior to the reinstatement of any dealer's registration that has been suspended for cause. (Amended 1965, No. 204, § 4; 1987, No. 190 (Adj. Sess.), § 4; 1997, No. 59, § 74, eff. June 30, 1997; 1999, No. 31, § 6; 2015, No. 50, § 2.)

  • § 463. Sale of vehicle to go out of State

    A registered motor vehicle dealer is authorized to issue an in-transit registration permit for the purpose of movement over the highways of certain motor vehicles otherwise required to be registered when these vehicles are sold in this State to be transported to and registered in another state or province. The Commissioner of Motor Vehicles shall, upon request, provide registered motor vehicle dealers with such numbers of applications and special in-transit number plates for vehicles sold in this State to be transported to and registered in another state or province as shall be necessary. The Commissioner is authorized to charge a fee of $6.00 for the processing of the plate application and the issuance of the plate. The dealer, upon the sale of a motor vehicle to be transported to and registered in another state or province, shall cause the application to be filled out and transmitted to the Commissioner and shall attach to the vehicle the in-transit number plate corresponding to the application. No registered motor vehicle dealer shall sell, exchange, give, or transfer any application or in-transit plate to any person other than the person to whom the dealer sells or exchanges a motor vehicle to be registered in another state or province. The application shall be in a form prescribed and furnished by the Commissioner. The special in-transit number plate to be attached to the vehicle will be issued in the form and design as prescribed by the Commissioner and shall be valid for a period of 30 days from the date of issue. (Amended 1967, No. 356 (Adj. Sess.), § 5; 1975, No. 68, § 5, eff. April 18, 1975; 1977, No. 173 (Adj. Sess.), § 2; 1979, No. 30, § 1, eff. April 17, 1979; 1985, No. 30, § 2; 1989, No. 51, § 31; 2001, No. 102 (Adj. Sess.), § 18, eff. May 15, 2002; 2003, No. 35, § 1; 2009, No. 50, § 45; 2015, No. 159 (Adj. Sess.), § 28.)

  • § 464. Return of number plates by dealer

    If a dealer comes into possession of a motor vehicle the registration of which has expired by reason of the provisions of section 321 of this title, and that has number plates attached, he or she shall immediately return such number plates to the Commissioner. (Amended 2019, No. 131 (Adj. Sess.), § 154.)

  • § 465. Loaning of plates, vehicles, or motorboats prohibited

    A dealer shall not lend or lease registration certificates, validation stickers, numbers, decals, or number plates that have been assigned to him or her under the provisions of this chapter, nor shall he or she lend or lease a vehicle or motorboat to which his or her dealer's decals, numbers, or number plates have been attached, nor lend or lease his or her dealer's decals, numbers, or number plates to a subagent. (Amended 1999, No. 31, § 7; 2015, No. 50, § 2.)

  • § 466. Records; custodian

    (a) On a form prescribed or approved by the Commissioner, every licensed dealer shall maintain and retain for six years a record containing the following information, which shall be open to inspection by any law enforcement officer or motor vehicle inspector or other agent of the Commissioner during reasonable business hours:

    (1) Every vehicle or motorboat that is bought, sold, or exchanged by the licensee or received or accepted by the licensee for sale or exchange.

    (2) Every vehicle or motorboat that is bought or otherwise acquired and dismantled by the licensee.

    (3) The name and address of the person from whom such vehicle or motorboat was purchased or acquired, the date thereof, the name and address of the person to whom any such vehicle or motorboat was sold or otherwise disposed of and the date thereof, and a sufficient description of every such vehicle or motorboat by name and identifying numbers thereon to identify the same.

    (4) [Repealed.]

    (b) Every licensed dealer shall designate a custodian of documents who shall have primary responsibility for administration of documents required to be maintained under this title. In the absence of the designated custodian, the dealer shall have an ongoing duty to make such records available for inspection by any law enforcement officer or motor vehicle inspector or other agent of the Commissioner during reasonable business hours. (Amended 1969, No. 259 (Adj. Sess.), § 10; 1999, No. 31, § 8; 2005, No. 143 (Adj. Sess.), § 3; 2011, No. 46, § 1; 2015, No. 50, § 2; 2017, No. 206 (Adj. Sess.), § 19, eff. May 30, 2018.)

  • § 467. Dealer duty to report sales, return expired plates

    On a form prescribed by the Commissioner, a dealer shall send the reports of sale to the Commissioner upon the sale and relative to his or her sale or exchange of new or used vehicles or motorboats, and return to the Commissioner number plates coming into his or her possession through the sale or exchange of a motor vehicle, the registration of which has expired under the provisions of section 321 of this title. (Amended 1999, No. 31, § 9; 2015, No. 50, § 2.)

  • § 468. General prohibition

    A dealer shall not operate a vehicle or motorboat nor permit the same to be operated under dealer's registration numbers, except as specifically permitted in this chapter or under section 3204, 3305, or 3504 of this title. No charge shall be made for any permitted use. (Amended 1999, No. 31, § 10; 2015, No. 50, § 2.)

  • §§ 469-471. Repealed. 1995, No. 188 (Adj. Sess.), § 4.

  • § 472. Evidence of authorization

    The Commissioner shall issue suitable documents of authorization of dealership that shall be displayed at the dealer's place of business. (Added 1965, No. 204, § 8.)

  • § 473. When registration is allowed, required; penalties

    (a) A person shall not engage in the business of selling or exchanging vehicles or motorboats, as defined in subdivision 4(8) of this title, without a dealer registration and obtaining dealer plates or motorboat registrations in accordance with the provisions of this subchapter and, if applicable, section 3204, 3305, or 3504 of this title. A person may register as a dealer only if he or she is engaged in the business of selling or exchanging vehicles or motorboats as defined in subdivision 4(8) of this title or, in the case of an initial registration, if the person's reasonable estimate of expected sales or exchanges satisfies the minimum thresholds under subdivision 4(8) of this title. A person who violates this section shall be subject to the penalties established pursuant to section 475 of this title.

    (b) A person who misrepresents himself or herself as a dealer in the purchase, sale, or exchange of a vehicle or motorboat without registering as a dealer, or after the cancellation, suspension, or revocation of the dealer's registration, or who makes misrepresentations to the Department in order to qualify for registration, shall be subject to the penalties established pursuant to section 475 of this title. (Added 1965, No. 204, § 7; 1985, No. 12, § 2; amended 1987, No. 190 (Adj. Sess.), § 7; 1989, No. 204 (Adj. Sess.), § 2; 1999, No. 31, § 11; 2015, No. 50, § 2.)

  • § 474. Repealed. 1979, No. 30, § 3, eff. April 17, 1979.

  • § 475. Administrative penalties

    (a) The Commissioner may impose an administrative penalty of not more than $500.00 for each violation against a dealer or a transporter who violates the provisions of this subchapter.

    (b) Each violation is a separate and distinct offense, and, in the case of a continuing violation, each day's continuance may be deemed a separate and distinct offense. In no event shall the maximum amount imposed for a continuing offense exceed $1,000.00.

    (c) The Commissioner shall adopt rules establishing a schedule of administrative penalties to be imposed under this section. Penalties shall be based on the severity and frequency of the violation.

    (d) The alleged violator shall be given notice and opportunity for a hearing. Service of the notice shall be sufficient if sent by first-class mail to the address stated on the dealer's certificate of registration. The notice shall include the following:

    (1) a factual description of the alleged violation;

    (2) a reference to the particular statute allegedly violated;

    (3) the amount of the proposed administrative penalty; and

    (4) a warning that the person will be deemed to have waived his or her right to a hearing, that the penalty will be imposed if no hearing is requested within 15 days from date of notice, and that failure to pay a penalty may result in suspension of his or her license.

    (e) A person who receives notice under subsection (d) of this section shall be deemed to have waived the right to a hearing unless, within 15 days from the date of the notice, the person requests a hearing in writing. If the person waives the right to a hearing, the Commissioner shall issue a final order finding the person in default and imposing the penalty.

    (f) The provisions of sections 105, 106, and 107 of this title shall apply to hearings conducted under this section.

    (g) The Commissioner may collect an unpaid administrative penalty by filing a civil action in Superior Court or through any other means available to State agencies.

    (h) If a penalty is not paid within 60 days after it is imposed, the Commissioner may suspend any license, certificate, registration, or permit issued under this subchapter.

    (i) The remedies authorized by this section shall be in addition to any other civil or criminal remedies provided by law for violation of this subchapter. (Added 1999, No. 31, § 12.)

  • § 476. Motor vehicle warranty fee

    A motor vehicle warranty fee of $6.00 is imposed on the registration of each new motor vehicle in this State, not including trailers, tractors, motorized highway building equipment, road-making appliances, snowmobiles, motorcycles, motor-driven cycles, or trucks with a gross vehicle weight over 12,000 pounds. (Added 2009, No. 50, § 56; amended 2009, No. 152 (Adj. Sess.), § 19d, eff. Sept. 1, 2010; 2015, No. 159 (Adj. Sess.), § 29.)

  • §§ 481-485. Repealed. 1969, No. 259 (Adj. Sess.), § 12.

  • § 491. Transporter application; eligibility; use of transporter plates

    (a) A transporter may apply for and the Commissioner of Motor Vehicles, in his or her discretion, may issue a certificate of registration and a general distinguishing number plate. Before a person may be registered as a transporter, he or she shall present proof:

    (1) of compliance with section 800 of this title; and

    (2) that he or she either owns or leases a permanent place of business located in this State where business will be conducted during regularly established business hours and the required records stored and maintained.

    (b) When he or she displays thereon his or her transporter's registration plate, a transporter or his or her employee or contractor may transport a motor vehicle owned by the transporter, repossessed, or temporarily in the transporter's custody, and it shall be considered to be properly registered under this title. Transporter's registration plates shall not be used for any other purposes and shall not be used by the holder of such number plates for personal purposes. (Added 1965, No. 106, § 2(a), eff. Feb. 1, 1966; amended 1969, No. 258 (Adj. Sess.), § 2, eff. May 1, 1970; 2015, No. 50, § 2.)

  • § 492. Certificate; expiration

    A transporter's registration certificate shall contain the name, place of residence, and address of the applicant; the distinguishing number assigned; and such further information as the Commissioner may determine. It shall expire on the last day of February next following the date of issue. (Added 1965, No. 106, § 2(b), eff. Feb. 1, 1966.)

  • § 493. Loan of plates prohibited

    A transporter shall not loan a number plate issued to him or her under this article. (Added 1965, No. 106, § 3, eff. Feb. 1, 1966.)

  • § 494. Fees

    The annual fee for a transporter's registration certificate, number plate, or validation sticker is $123.00. (Added 1965, No. 106, § 4, eff. Feb. 1, 1966; amended 1967, No. 129, § 8; 1981, No. 87, § 17; 1989, No. 51, § 32; 2001, No. 102 (Adj. Sess.), § 19, eff. May 15, 2002; 2015, No. 159 (Adj. Sess.), § 30.)

  • § 495. Suspension of registration

    The Commissioner may cancel a registration certificate issued to a transporter whenever, after hearing before the Commissioner or upon conviction in any court in this State, the Commissioner finds that the transporter has violated any motor vehicle law in this State or any lawful regulation of the Commissioner applying to transporters. A transporter whose certificate has been cancelled shall forthwith return to the Commissioner the registration certificate and the number plates furnished him or her by the Commissioner. (Added 1965, No. 106, § 5, eff. Feb. 1, 1966.)

  • § 496. Written records

    Every transporter shall keep a written record, upon forms prescribed and furnished by the Commissioner for that purpose, of the motor vehicles upon which such transporter plate is used and the date and time during which each plate is used on a particular motor vehicle, which record shall be open to inspection by any law enforcement officer. (Added 1969, No. 258 (Adj. Sess.), § 3, eff. May 1, 1970.)

  • § 497. Rulemaking

    The Commissioner may adopt rules pursuant to 3 V.S.A. chapter 25 consistent with this chapter as may be necessary to carry their provisions into effect. The rules may prescribe what shall be requisite to obtaining or retaining a dealer registration and may, by way of illustration and not limitation, include requirements regarding maintenance of knowledge of regulatory criteria, training standards, convictions, ownership or leasehold interests in real estate, facilities, hours and days of operation, proof of compliance with any other applicable laws or rules, and any other matter or thing that, in the Commissioner's judgment, will contribute to the registration and reasonable regulation of dealers in order to promote business, prevent fraud, and encourage fair and honest competition. (Added 1999, No. 31, § 13.)


  • Subchapter 005: Display of Number Plates
  • § 511. Manner of display

    (a) A motor vehicle operated on any highway shall have displayed in a conspicuous place either one or two number plates as the Commissioner may require. Such number plates shall be furnished by the Commissioner and shall show the number assigned to such vehicle by the Commissioner. If only one number plate is furnished, the same shall be securely attached to the rear of the vehicle. If two are furnished, one shall be securely attached to the rear and one to the front of the vehicle. The number plates shall be kept entirely unobscured, and the numerals and the letters thereon shall be plainly legible at all times. They shall be kept horizontal, shall be so fastened as not to swing, excepting however, there may be installed on a motor truck or truck tractor a device that would, upon contact with a substantial object, permit the rear number plate to swing toward the front of the vehicle, provided such device automatically returns the number plate to its original rigid position after contact is released, and the ground clearance of the lower edges thereof shall be established by the Commissioner pursuant to the provisions of 3 V.S.A. chapter 25.

    (b) A registration validation sticker shall be unobstructed and shall be affixed as follows:

    (1) for vehicles issued registration plates with dimensions of approximately 12 x 6 inches, in the lower right corner of the rear registration plate; and

    (2) for vehicles issued a registration plate with a dimension of approximately 7 x 4 inches, in the upper right corner of the rear registration plate.

    (c) A person shall not operate a motor vehicle unless number plates and a validation sticker are displayed as provided in this section.

    (d) An operator cited for violating subsection (c) of this section with respect to failure to display a validation sticker on a pleasure car, motorcycle, or truck that could be registered for less than 26,001 pounds shall be subject to a civil penalty of not more than $5.00, which penalty shall be exempt from surcharges under 13 V.S.A. § 7282(a), if he or she is cited within the 14 days following the expiration of the motor vehicle's registration. (Amended 1979, No. 125 (Adj. Sess.), § 2, eff. April 15, 1980; 2013, No. 189 (Adj. Sess.), § 4; 2019, No. 60, § 32.)

  • § 512. Trailer or semi-trailer

    When a trailer or semi-trailer is being drawn by a registered motor vehicle, the rear number plate assigned to such trailer or semi-trailer shall be displayed on the rear of such trailer or semi-trailer and shall be illuminated at night as provided in section 1248 of this title for the lighting of rear number plates on motor vehicles. (Amended 2015, No. 47, § 14.)

  • § 513. Misuse of plates

    Except as provided in section 321 of this title, an owner of a motor vehicle shall not attach or cause to be attached to the vehicle number plates that were not assigned by the Commissioner of Motor Vehicles. A person shall not operate a motor vehicle, except as provided in section 321 of this title, to which number plates are attached that were not assigned to the vehicle by the Commissioner of Motor Vehicles. An inspector of motor vehicles and any enforcement officer shall have authority to remove from a motor vehicle any plates that have been attached in violation of the provisions of this section. (Amended 2005, No. 167 (Adj. Sess.), § 1, eff. May 20, 2006.)

  • § 514. Replacement number plates

    (a) In case of the loss of a number plate, the owner of the motor vehicle to which it was assigned shall immediately notify the Commissioner of such loss, and the Commissioner shall furnish such owner with a new plate. The fee charged shall be $12.00 for each plate. The owner of a motor vehicle who has lost one number plate may operate his or her vehicle with only one number plate attached, until a new plate is furnished him or her, provided he or she notified the Commissioner as required under this section.

    (b) Any replacement number plate shall be issued at a fee of $12.00. However, if the Commissioner, in his or her discretion, determines that a plate has become illegible as a result of deficiencies in the manufacturing process or by use of faulty materials, the replacement fee shall be waived. (Amended 1969, No. 276 (Adj. Sess.), § 6; 1981, No. 81, § 1, eff. May 5, 1981; 1989, No. 51, § 33; 2001, No. 102 (Adj. Sess.), § 20, eff. May 15, 2002; 2005, No. 72, § 12; 2011, No. 46, § 4; 2015, No. 159 (Adj. Sess.), § 31; 2019, No. 131 (Adj. Sess.), § 155.)

  • § 515. Repealed. 1989, No. 137 (Adj. Sess.), § 2.

  • §§ 515a-515c. Repealed. 2015, No. 47, § 15.

  • § 516. Sale of vehicle to go out of State by a person other than dealer

    The Commissioner of Motor Vehicles is authorized to issue an in-transit registration permit for the purpose of movement over the highways of certain motor vehicles otherwise required to be registered when the vehicles are sold in this State by a person, other than a registered motor vehicle dealer, to be transported to and registered in another state or province. The registration may be obtained by submitting an application on a form prescribed and furnished by the Commissioner of Motor Vehicles. The Commissioner is authorized to charge a fee of $6.00 for the processing of the application and the issuance of the plate. The in-transit registration plate pursuant to this section shall be valid for a period of 30 days from issuance and shall be in the form and design prescribed by the Commissioner of Motor Vehicles. Issuance of an in-transit plate for vehicles sold by a registered motor vehicle dealer to a person to be transported to and registered in another state or province shall be governed by the provisions of section 463 of this title. (Added 1979, No. 30, § 2, eff. April 17, 1979; amended 1985, No. 30, § 3; 1995, No. 120 (Adj. Sess.), § 3; 2003, No. 35, § 2; 2015, No. 159 (Adj. Sess.), § 32.)

  • § 517. Intrastate in-transit permit

    The Commissioner may issue an intrastate in-transit registration permit to authorize the movement within Vermont of a motor vehicle otherwise required to be registered, if the vehicle is sold in this State by a person other than a registered motor vehicle dealer. The permit may be obtained after submission of an application on a form prescribed and furnished by the Commissioner and payment of a $6.00 fee. The permit shall be valid for a period of 10 days from the date of issuance and shall be in the form and design prescribed by the Commissioner. (Added 2015, No. 159 (Adj. Sess.), § 33.)

  • § 518. Electronic in-transit permit

    (a) Issuance of permit; length. The Commissioner is authorized to issue electronic in-transit registration permits for the purpose of movement over the highways of certain motor vehicles otherwise required to be registered when the vehicles are sold by a person, other than a registered motor vehicle dealer, to a resident to be transported to or within and registered in this State. The electronic in-transit registration permit issued pursuant to this section shall be valid for a period of 10 days from issuance and shall be in the form and design prescribed by the Commissioner.

    (b) Form of application; fee. The registration may be obtained by submitting an application under oath on a form prescribed and furnished by the Commissioner, which shall require the applicant to attest to compliance with the provisions of section 800 of this title. The Commissioner is authorized to charge a fee of $6.00 for the processing of the application and the issuance of the electronic permit.

    (c) Proof to be carried by operator. It shall be unlawful for any individual to drive a vehicle registered pursuant to this section unless the operator has in his or her possession a valid bill of sale for the vehicle and proof of compliance with the provisions of section 800 of this title. Notwithstanding section 511 of this title, a motor vehicle may be operated without having displayed one or two number plates if the operator has an electronic in-transit registration permit. An operator may prove that he or she is in possession of an electronic in-transit registration permit for the vehicle he or she is operating using a portable electronic device; however, use of a device for this purpose does not in itself constitute consent for an enforcement officer to access other contents of the device. (Added 2019, No. 149 (Adj. Sess.), § 4.)