Regulations Applying to Motorcycle Plates Passed into Law and Effective August 1, 2008

These regulations were passed into law and are effective August 1, 2008. Please read carefully the regs that apply to motorcycle plates.
I believe these rules were put in place for the benefit of the license plate scanning/recognition systems now in place in many areas and which soon will be standard in most areas.  Also note, it is unusual for a law change to take effect without a publicity campaign.  This may not be enforced until all plates have been changed over to the new plates, but no one with enforcement authority has said this.  Please spread the word to all Minnesota motorcyclists and all who may be passing through Minnesota.

Mack Backlund
State Coordinator

In 2008, Minnesota began to transition to digital license plate (DLP) technology.  For the past several years, Minnesota has used digital license plate (DLP) technology to produce the Critical Habitat Loon and Support Our Troops license plates.  In 2008, Minnesota began to transition passenger plates to DLP.  Eventually, all license plates in Minnesota will be be manufactured using the DLP system.
DLP are flat plates.  The license plate number on plates produced by the DLP system are black. If you have questions about the DLP system please contact DVS at 651-284-3896.
It will take several years to transition all Minnesota plates to DLP.  In the meantime, many vehicles will continue to display license plates that are made of reflectorized sheeting applied to steel or aluminum.  In most cases the letter and number characters are embossed and are non-reflective.
License plates issued to passenger automobiles and dealer license plates are replaced at seven (7) year intervals; all other license plates are issued for the life of the vehicle.

Plate Display:  Effective August 1, 2008, all license plates are required to be displayed horizontally and in an upright position with the identifying numbers and letters facing outward from the vehicle.

License plates issued after July 1, 2008, requiring validation must display the month of expiration in the lower left corner of each plate and the year of expiration in the lower right corner of the plate.

Special Plate Review - Fiscal Year 2007

Single Plate Issue
Back display
- A single license plate is issued to the following vehicles for display on the back of the vehicle.
     dealer and dealer in transit vehicles
The owner of the vehicle may elect to display only one plate on the back of the vehicle in the following situations (Minnesota Statute 169.79, subd.4):
     the vehicle model year is 1972 or earlier, and the vehicle is used for general transportation
     the vehicle is used for general transportation and meets the definition of a pioneer, classic, or street rod vehicle (Minnesota Statute 168.10)
     the vehicle is registered in one of the collector classes (pioneer, classic car, collector, street rod)

Front display - A single license plate is issued to the following vehicles for display on the front of the vehicle.
     tractors and truck-tractors, used in tractor-trailer combinations
     farm class vehicles, 20 model years or older

Double Plate Issue
All other vehicles are issued double plates to display on the front and back of the vehicle. This includes cars, vans, pickups, trucks, and buses.