Canceling license plates and registration is a necessary task if you stop covering a vehicle with mandatory insurance. You must also cancel license plates if they are stolen or if the renewal stickers are removed. Canceling registration is necessary if you sell your vehicle. In most states, you can cancel your plates and registration online, saving you a trip to your local DMV.

Items you will need

  • Current registration
  • Proof of insurance
  • License refund form
  • License plates


  • If you are allowed to keep your old plates, remember to store them safely or destroy them. You don’t want your old plates linked to criminal activity, should someone get hold of them and use them. Do not simply throw you old plates intact into the trash.
  • Cancel your plates prior to canceling vehicle insurance to avoid potential fines for driving an uninsured vehicle.


Step 1

Print out your state’s plate refund form. This allows you to cancel your plates and receive a pro-rated refund of your plate fees. Look up your state’s address for mailing in your old plate(s) along with the form. Some states require only the rear plate to cancel; others do not require the old plates at all.

Step 2

Some states make you cancel in person. Bring your plates to your local license office, along with a current insurance card. If the plates were stolen, inform local authorities and bring the police report to the DMV instead.

Step 3

Download and fill out a lost plate affidavit form. This is required to cancel registration if your plates were lost or stolen. Fill out the form and mail it to your state’s registrar or fill it out in person at your local DMV.

Sassy Peeps, what steps do you take to cancel your license plates and registration? Inquiring minds want to know. 

Have A Happy Healthy, and Remember to Always…
Stay Sassy!



Collin Whittaker

Collin is the editor and owner of The blog/website came to life out of his passion for the automotive industry. He has 15 years of experience and has worked for companies like Honda, Nissan, Firestone, and many other auto repair shops. Collin is a husband and a father to three beautiful kids.

His goal is to share his expertise and knowledge of the automotive industry in hopes of helping many car owners keep their cars reliable, safe, and enjoyable.

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