If you want to transfer a number plate, there are two basic steps involved in doing so.
Firstly, you need to take that plate off the donor vehicle – unless of course the number plate is on a retention certificate rather than a vehicle. The next step is to assign that registration to the recipient vehicle.
When it comes to how to transfer a number plate, bear in mind that the processes of removing a number plate from a vehicle and assigning it to another vehicle must both be completed via the DVLA.
Taking a plate off a vehicle
To remove a personalised number plate from a vehicle, you must initially check eligibility. The vehicle itself must adhere to certain DVLA terms and conditions, such as having current road tax or a SORN in place, an MOT pass certificate, and being DVLA registered. It must also be able to move by means of its own power and be available for inspection, as the DVLA does decide to inspect some vehicles when an application is made.
You can then apply online or by post. With the former, the plate may immediately be removed, while postal applications take up to two weeks to process. When taking a plate off a vehicle, you either need to reassign it to another vehicle right away or put it on a V778 retention certificate to protect your right to use or trade it in future. There is currently a fee of £80 for the transfer.
How to transfer a number plate to another vehicle
If you are assigning the number plate to another vehicle, then you will need a retention certificate, an online reference number or a V750 “certificate of entitlement”. One of these will have been issued when you bought the number plate or removed it from another vehicle. Again, conditions apply regarding the vehicle, including availability for inspection as well as having a current MOT and road tax, plus the means to move under its own power.
Some numbers cannot be assigned. These include any that begin with “NIQ” or “Q”, and you also cannot put a different plate onto any “Q” registered car. Also, it is not permitted to use a number plate that would make a car seem newer than it really is.
Again, you can apply online or by post, and if applying online the number plate might be immediately assigned. Postal applications take up to two weeks to process. Either way, it’s free to apply.
How long does it take to transfer a number plate?
Whether you’re removing or assigning a number plate, each of these two steps can take up to two weeks to complete if you’re applying by post. When applying online, the number plate may immediately be removed and assigned, as long as the DVLA does not wish to inspect the vehicle concerned.
How to transfer a number plate to another person
Once more, you can apply online or by post to transfer your number plate to someone else. Either way, you will need the log book (V5C) of the vehicle to which you are assigning the plate, plus a V778 retention certificate or a V750 entitlement certificate. Online applications will normally result in the number being assigned to the recipient vehicle straight away, while postal applications take a little longer.
How to transfer a number plate online
To transfer a number plate online, you need to follow the relevant steps detailed above. The number plate will first be removed from the donor vehicle. Then it needs to be assigned, and the exact procedure differs slightly according to whether or not you know the person whose vehicle is to receive the number plate.