Wisconsin License Plate Information Summary
The Wisconsin DMV will give you license plates when you first register your vehicle. You can transfer your Wisconsin license plates. You will get stickers indicating the month and year your plates will expire.
Wisconsin License Plates Offered
You will need two plates – front and rear – for all vehicles except motorcycles which only need one on the back. You can get standard, vanity, disabled and speciality Wisconsin license plates.
You will also get stickers to put on your rear plate, letting law enforcement know your Wisconsin license plates are valid.
Your dealership or the agency that finances your car can provide you with temporary tags good for 90 days. In general, they will also get your permanent Wisconsin license plates for you.
You can get your own temporary plates if you buy a car but live in another state, have to get your emissions tested, buy a car in a private sale, or move to Wisconsin but don't have valid tags from your previous state.
These temporary Wisconsin license plates will cost a $3 license plate fee and a $5 service fee, and be good for 30 days.
When You Need To Get Wisconsin License Plates
- When you move to Wisconsin, you must get temporary plates or permanent Wisconsin license plates the day you arrive.
- When you buy a vehicle in Wisconsin, you have two days to get temporary or permanent plates.
Keeping Your License Plates Up To Date
Once a year, you must renew your Wisconsin license plates with your registration. You will then get new stickers.
If Your Wisconsin License Plates Are Stolen
If your Wisconsin license plates are stolen or damaged, you must file a police report.
You can do so in person or through the mail. You will need your VIN number and license plate number.
You will be charged $10 for the plates. If you order by mail, you can also request temporary Wisconsin license plates to last until you get your new plates.
Transferring Or Surrendering Your License Plates
You are under no obligation to surrender your plates – ever. You can keep them as souvenirs or recycle them.
You can nearly always transfer your plates from one vehicle to a newer vehicle you purchase.
In many cases, you may be due a refund for unused time on your plates. To claim your refund, submit a request for refund along with your registration card and sticker from your vehicle.
Wisconsin License Plate Costs
- License plates for passenger cars and trucks up to 4,500 are $75.
- Fees for bigger vehicles vary.
- Motorcycle plates are $23 for two-year plates.