New Laws Take Effect Ignition Interlocks Year of Manufacture License Plates

California Department of Motor Vehicles
Media Relations Office
2415 First Avenue, MS F-122, Sacramento, CA 95818
Contact: DMV Media Relations

July 9 , 2009

Sacramento —The Department of Motor Vehicles reminds motorists of two new laws which took effect July 1 in California:  implementation of mandatory ignition interlock devices (IIDs), and a new law designed for vintage car collectors which would allow cars from 1963 to 1969 to re-register with black and yellow California plates. Governor Schwarzenegger signed both laws in 2008.

Following are capsule summaries:

Mandatory Ignition Interlocks. This new law requires Ignition Interlock Devices (IIDs) be installed on vehicles owned and operated by motorists convicted of driving on a suspended license due to a previous alcohol-related conviction.

“There are an estimated 40,000 persons convicted annually of DUI-related offenses who then drive on suspended licenses; further, there were 1,489 people needlessly killed in an alcohol-involved collision during 2007 in California. This law is a major step toward reducing those numbers,” said DMV Director George Valverde.

The DMV must notify the court if you fail to submit proof of installation of an IID within 30 days from date of notice. A person who is required and fails to install an IID is guilty of a misdemeanor and shall be punished by imprisonment in the county jail for not more than six months or by fine of not more than five thousand dollars ($5,000), or both.

Motorists who fall into the category of driving with a suspended license for a DUI-related conviction will be assessed a $40 administrative fee for verification of the IID installation.

Year of Manufacture license plates.This new law expands the “Year of Manufacture” license plate program to authorize the owner of a automobile, motorcycle or trailer that is a 1969 or older model year vehicle, or the owner of a commercial vehicle or pickup truck that is 1972 or older model year, to utilize Year of Manufacture license plates, and would increase the original application fee from $35 to $45.  The $10 annual renewal fee, $20 plate retention fee, and $12 plate transfer fee remain the same.

The new law would require the inclusion of two active license plate series into the Year of Manufacture program:

  • Black background with yellow characters – issued 1963 - 1969;
  • Blue background with yellow characters – issued 1970 - 1990.

To qualify for use, plate configuration cannot have a current record on DMV files.  The year sticker displayed on the plates must coincide with the year model of the vehicle being registered with the exception of 1963 year model vehicles.
Black and gold plates without a year sticker can be used for 1963 vehicles as no validating year stickers were issued in 1963.  Plates for 1964 through 1972 must be presented with a sticker that matches the year model of the vehicle the plates will be used on.  For example, a 1966 Chevy Nomad Wagon will require that a set of black and yellow plates with a 1966 sticker issued by DMV in that year be presented for use. 

Additional information on both laws can be found at


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