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How to Get a Custom License Plate in Florida

How to Get a Custom License Plate in Florida

License plates serve as identification for vehicles and are required by law in the state of Florida. While standard license plates are issued by the Florida Department of Highway Safety and Motor Vehicles (DHSMV), individuals also have the option to obtain a custom license plate. Custom license plates allow vehicle owners to personalize their plates with a unique combination of letters, numbers, or symbols that hold personal significance. If you’re interested in getting a custom license plate in Florida, here’s a step-by-step guide to help you navigate the process.

Step 1: Choose Your Custom Plate Design
The first step in obtaining a custom license plate in Florida is to select a design that suits your preferences. The Florida DHSMV offers a wide range of specialty license plates, each supporting a specific cause or organization. These specialty plates often feature unique designs, logos, or symbols related to the cause they represent. Visit the DHSMV website or a local Tax Collector’s Office to browse through the available options and choose a design that resonates with you.

Step 2: Check Plate Availability
Once you’ve selected a design, it’s essential to check if the specific combination of letters, numbers, or symbols you desire is available. On the DHSMV website, there is a search function that allows you to check the availability of your desired plate combination. If your preferred combination is already taken, you’ll need to select an alternative combination until you find an available one.

Step 3: Complete the Application
After confirming the availability of your desired custom plate combination, it’s time to complete the application. You can obtain the application form from the DHSMV website or pick one up at a local Tax Collector’s Office. Fill out the form accurately and provide the necessary information, including your name, address, vehicle details, and the desired custom plate combination. Make sure to double-check the information before submitting the application to avoid any delays.

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Step 4: Pay the Required Fees
To obtain a custom license plate in Florida, there are certain fees that need to be paid. The fees vary depending on the type of custom plate you choose and can include an initial fee, annual use fees, and additional fees for personalization. Check the DHSMV website or contact your local Tax Collector’s Office to find out the specific fees associated with your desired custom plate. Payments can typically be made online, by mail, or in person at the Tax Collector’s Office.

Step 5: Receive and Install the Custom Plate
Once the application is approved, you will receive your custom license plate by mail or can pick it up from the Tax Collector’s Office. It’s important to follow the instructions provided to properly install the license plate on your vehicle. Make sure to securely attach the plate using the designated screws or fasteners to ensure it remains visible and in compliance with state regulations.


Q: Can I transfer my custom license plate to another vehicle?
A: Yes, you can transfer your custom license plate to another vehicle owned by you or an immediate family member. You will need to complete the appropriate transfer form and pay the required fees.

Q: How long does it take to receive a custom license plate?
A: The processing time for custom license plates may vary. It typically takes around 4 to 6 weeks for the DHSMV to process and deliver your custom plate.

Q: Can I personalize a specialty license plate?
A: No, personalization is only available for standard custom license plates. Specialty license plates have pre-determined designs and cannot be personalized.

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Q: Can I request a refund if I no longer want my custom license plate?
A: Unfortunately, custom license plate fees are non-refundable once the application has been processed and approved.

Q: Are there any restrictions on the characters I can use for my custom plate?
A: Yes, there are restrictions on the characters allowed for custom license plates. Obscene, offensive, or misleading combinations will not be approved. The DHSMV has guidelines in place to ensure that the requested combinations comply with these restrictions.

Obtaining a custom license plate in Florida allows you to add a personal touch to your vehicle while supporting a cause or organization you care about. By following these steps and considering the FAQs, you’ll be well on your way to cruising the streets with a unique license plate that reflects your individuality.

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