We get a lot of phone calls about plate releases. While it is important that you contact the DMV Agent Help Desk prior to processing a plate release, here are two scenarios to help you better understand when and why you’ll need to process a plate release.
Plate releases allow your customer to use a plate they already possess. There are two common situations where a plate release is used.
- New Car/New Owner
Robert Smith has plate 1234567 on his 2003 Buick that is valid for another five (5) months. His wife Mary recently purchased a 2014 Cadillac and the couple would like to use the plate on the new car. Unfortunately, the new car was purchased in Mary’s name only and the plates they want to use were in Robert’s name only. The Smith’s request to transfer the plates cannot be honored because it does not meet the State of NH requirements (the registration and the title ownership must match). The Smiths are extremely disappointed, but hopeful when an alternative is mentioned. Robert can sign a letter releasing the plate to Mary that states he is no longer interested in the plate and understands the remaining credit (the five remaining months until the registration expires) is not transferable or refundable. The letter of plate release may be handwritten or you can create a form (see example below).
July 1, 2014
I, Robert Smith, release any and all interest in plate 1234567 to Mary Smith. I understand any credit remaining is not transferable or refundable.
Signed: Robert Smith
The plate is released off the previous vehicle so the customer can use it on their new vehicle. Depending on whether the plate you are releasing is a vanity or non-vanity, and whether you are releasing the plate for your purposes or for all locations in the State, will determine which radio button you select. When you call the DMV to get permission to release the plate, they will specify which option you should choose. Once you have selected a radio button click Next. A message will display stating the Plate Release was successful.
2. Expired Registration
Finally, after two years, Matthew Corey completed repairs on his classic Ford Mustang and and would like to renew his registration. Unfortunately, because two years has passed the vehicle is no longer eligible for renewal and must be processed as a new registration. Matthew is unhappy because he really wants to keep his plates with the number 2225555 because it is so easy to remember. Again, the DMV Agent Help Desk must be contacted for approval before releasing the plate to your inventory for reissuing to the Ford Mustang (no plate fee is charged). In this example Matthew is keeping the plate in his possession/ownership and is not required to complete or sign a release of plate form.