By general principle, you cannot operate any car unless it has license plates. License plates serve as your ID on the road, a public declaration that you intend to be a driver who’s a law-abiding citizen with a sense of responsibility on the wheel, and that the vehicle is a not a junkie dinky or an experimental wizard space movable.
You obtain all the information you need from the webpage of the New York State Department of Motor Vehicles (NYSDMV) in procuring new license plates. For a new vehicle purchase, the license plate is normally obtained when you undergo the registration process. To do this, you need to go to the DMV office and fill up a registration form, show documents of identity, car insurance, and proof that you own the vehicle. You pay for the title fee ($50), the license plate fee ($25), plus tax.
The complexity of the process has to do more with the registration rather than the acquisition of the license plate itself. It is best to look at the webpage because there are different lists of required documents for varied cases of registration: vehicle is on loan, vehicle purchased from a dealer, vehicle is a military car. As general instruction, bring all identity papers necessary to save you from the hassle of having to shuttle. There are provisions for registering by mail or through a second party.
For lost and stolen license plates, you have to personally appear at the DMV office and surrender your damaged plates and/or remaining ones, show proof of insurance and identity, pay replacement fees, $25 for the standard plate which includes the payment for a duplicate set of registration documents and $12.50 for motorcycle plates. According to the NYS law, you have to retain license plates when buying or selling your vehicle, and transfer them to a new vehicle or surrender your plates to the DMV.
There are a variety of customized and specialty plates available in variable fees and you can call the DMV’s Custom Plates Unit at (528) 402-4838 anytime between 8 AM to 4 PM weekdays for more information.