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How Much Does It Cost to Transfer Plates in Massachusetts

How Much Does It Cost to Transfer Plates in Massachusetts?

Transferring license plates from one vehicle to another is a common practice in Massachusetts. Whether you have purchased a new vehicle or are simply switching plates between vehicles, it is important to understand the costs involved in this process. In this article, we will explore the fees associated with transferring plates in Massachusetts and provide answers to some frequently asked questions.

Costs of Transferring Plates in Massachusetts:

1. Plate Transfer Fee: The Massachusetts Registry of Motor Vehicles (RMV) charges a fee of $25 to transfer license plates from one vehicle to another. This fee covers the administrative costs of processing the transfer.

2. Plate Re-Issue Fee: If you want to obtain new plates during the transfer process, you will be required to pay a plate re-issue fee of $20 in addition to the $25 plate transfer fee. This fee is applicable if you are switching from specialty plates to regular plates or vice versa.

3. Sales Tax: When transferring plates to a newly purchased vehicle, you may be subject to sales tax. The sales tax is based on the purchase price of the vehicle and varies depending on the city or town where the transaction takes place. In Massachusetts, the sales tax rate is 6.25%.

4. Excise Tax: In addition to the sales tax, Massachusetts residents are required to pay an annual excise tax on their registered vehicles. The excise tax is calculated based on the value of the vehicle and the town or city’s tax rate. The excise tax is not directly related to plate transfers but is an ongoing cost associated with vehicle ownership.

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Frequently Asked Questions:

1. Can I transfer my plates online?
Yes, the Massachusetts RMV offers an online platform where you can complete the plate transfer process. However, certain conditions must be met, such as having an active vehicle registration and valid insurance. Additionally, not all plate types are eligible for online transfers. It is advisable to check the RMV website for specific requirements.

2. Can I transfer plates between family members?
Yes, plates can be transferred between immediate family members, such as spouses, parents, or siblings. However, both parties must meet certain criteria, including residing at the same address and having a valid vehicle registration and insurance. The $25 plate transfer fee still applies in these cases.

3. Can I transfer plates from a leased vehicle to a purchased vehicle?
Yes, you can transfer plates from a leased vehicle to a purchased vehicle. However, you may need to provide additional documentation, such as a letter of authorization from the leasing company. It is recommended to contact the RMV or your leasing company for specific instructions and requirements.

4. Do I need to surrender my old plates?
Yes, when transferring plates in Massachusetts, you are required to surrender the old plates to the RMV. Failure to do so may result in penalties or fines. It is important to remove any registration stickers and return the plates promptly.

In conclusion, transferring license plates in Massachusetts involves a few costs. The plate transfer fee of $25, plate re-issue fee of $20 (if applicable), sales tax, and annual excise tax are the main expenses associated with this process. It is important to note that these fees may vary, and it is recommended to check the Massachusetts RMV website or contact the RMV directly for the most up-to-date information.

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