Legacy License Plates FAQs (English)
Q1: What is the Legacy plate?
A: Legislation introduced the California Legacy License Plate program offering vehicle owners the opportunity to purchase replicas of California license plates similar to those issued in the 1950s, 1960s, and 1970s. Only the 1960’s plate reached the required 7,500 minimum orders before January 1, 2015.
Q2: When should I expect to receive the 1960’s plates I have pre-ordered?
A: Expect issuance in the summer of 2015. Allow additional time for personalized plates.
Q3: What is the fee to order the 1960’s Legacy License Plates?
Q4: Does the application fee of $50 apply to either a sequential or a personalized license plate?
A: Yes. The fee is the same for either choice of plate configuration.
Q5: What other fees will be due for the 1960’s Legacy Plates?
A:$40 for renewal
$15 to transfer the plates to another vehicle
$35 for substitute plates
Q6: Can I submit my order online?
A: Yes, you may order online at dmv.ca.gov.
Q7: Can I pay with a credit or debit card?
A: When ordering online a credit card or debit card is accepted. For orders submitted by mail payment must be made by check, money order, or cashier’s check made payable to the Department of Motor Vehicles.
Q8: Can I submit my order at a DMV Field Office or Auto Club office?
A: Yes, but why not order online at dmv.ca.gov. If visiting a field office, we recommend scheduling an appointment.
Q9: Where do I send the order form and payment?
A: Department of Motor Vehicles
Legacy License Plates
Special Processing Unit M.S. D328
PO Box 932345
Sacramento, CA 94232–3450
This information is also on the order form. Be sure to keep a copy before submitting it.
Q10: How will I know that DMV received my application?
A: If your payment is cashed by DMV, your application was received and tentatively approved.
Q11: Can the 1960’s Legacy Plates be assigned to any year model of vehicle?
Q12: Can the 1960’s Legacy Plates be assigned to motorcycles?
Q13: Are the Legacy Plates going to look exactly like the license plates issued in the 1960's?
A: No. Current law requires license plates to be reflectorized and modern manufacturing processes may not allow for an exact replication of the original plates. The images shown on the website are for illustrative purposes only. The final design of the plate will differ; however, as many characteristics of the original plates as possible will be applied.
Q14: Will the 1960’s Legacy License Plate program eliminate the Year of Manufacture (YOM) plate program?
A: No. The YOM program will not be replaced by the Legacy License Plate program.
Q15: Can I order the 1960’s Legacy Plates as a gift?
A: Yes. The order form contains an area to provide the recipient's name and address information. However, once issued, the plates must be assigned to a California registered vehicle.
Q16: What if the personalized license plate number(s) I request is deemed to be unacceptable by DMV?
A: All of the personal plate number choices entered on the order form will be reviewed for acceptability once processed. If your request is found unacceptable, your order form and payment will be returned to you.
Q17: What would deem a personalized plate number as unacceptable?
A: The configuration can be construed to be offensive to good taste, or it is similar to configurations of other license plate types. For example, plate configurations issued in the 50's and 60's (ABC123), or 70's (1ABC123), are not acceptable as personalized plate numbers.
Other criteria to consider (Title 13, California Code of Regulations, Section 170.00):
• When a desired configuration is not available, a letter shall not be substituted for a number, nor shall a number be substituted for a letter, to create another configuration of a similar appearance.
• The number zero shall not be used in the configuration.
• The numbers “69” may only be placed on a vehicle with the same year model. Please provide copy of registration card for the vehicle you will be placing the plates on.
• The configuration has a sexual connotation or is a term of lust or depravity.
• The configuration is a vulgar term; a term of contempt, prejudice, or hostility; an insulting or degrading term; a racially degrading term; or an ethnically degrading term.
• The configuration is a swear word or term considered profane, obscene, or repulsive.
• The configuration has a negative connotation to a specific group.
• The configuration misrepresents a law enforcement entity.
• The configuration has been deleted from regular series license plates.
• The configuration is a foreign or slang word or term, or is a phonetic spelling or mirror image of a word or term falling into the categories described above.
Q18: What if the DMV determines all of the personal plate numbers I requested are acceptable, but not available?
A: Your application and payment will be returned.
Q19: The meaning of my personal plate request is a private joke among my friends. Do I have to explain what it means?
A: Yes. The department must ensure that the meaning of a plate configuration will not be construed as offensive to good taste.
Q20: Can I order a different style of personalized plate with the configuration I want, and then change the number to a 1960’s Legacy License Plate?
A: Yes. However, this will not be considered an exchange and the $50 fee for the Legacy plate will be due when you order them. To view the fees for other types of special plates, go the Special Interest or Personalized Plates section on DMV's website.
Q21: If I wish to cancel my order after the program is implemented and my personal plate number is reserved, will I get a refund?
A: No. A refund will not be issued once a plate number is reserved.
Q22: How will my new personalized plates be assigned to my car?
A: You will be asked on your order form to select a DMV Field Office or Auto Club office where your new approved personalized license plates will be shipped. You will receive a notice when the plates arrive at that office. Take your CURRENT registration card (the vehicle cannot be on Planned Non–Operation status) and your existing plates to that office to have your new Legacy License Plates assigned to your vehicle. If you will be picking your new plates up at a DMV Field Office, make an appointment at 1–800–777–0133 or online. Make sure you keep your address current on the vehicle record!
Q23: If I ordered sequential Legacy Plates, how will they be assigned to my car?
A: When requesting sequential plates, you will be asked on your order form to enter the current license plate number and Vehicle Identification Number (VIN) of the vehicle you wish the plates to be assigned. Your sequential plates will be assigned to the vehicle and a new registration card and sticker will be issued. NOTE: The vehicle must be currently registered and cannot be on Planned Non–Operations at the time the order is processed in order for the plates to be assigned to the vehicle. Make sure to keep your address current on the vehicle record!
Q24: Can I pick up the plates without assigning them to a vehicle?
A: No, the plates must be assigned to a currently registered California vehicle when they are picked up. This includes plates ordered as a gift.
Q25: What is the statutory authority permitting the development of the Legacy License Plates?
A: California Vehicle Code Section 5004.3 was added by Assembly Bill 1658 (Gatto), enacted in the 2012 legislative session.