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Drive-away License Plates

Code of Virginia § 46.2-733

If your business performs any of the functions listed below, you may also apply for drive-away license plates. These plates may be used for the following:

  • By any individual delivering unladen motor vehicles, trailers, and semitrailers from points of assembly or distribution in the usual course of that individual's delivery business. Operators of any vehicles being delivered that bear these plates must have a proper bill of lading in their possession at all times during their operation. The bill of lading must show the point of origin and destination (with either the point of origin or destination within Virginia) of the vehicle being delivered, along with a description of the vehicle.
  • By a financial institution (not licensed as a motor vehicle dealer) that in the normal course of business is:
    1. Taking, repossessing or otherwise transporting vehicles for the purpose of preservation or sale,
    2. Allowing a prospective buyer to test drive the vehicle if the buyer is: (1) is accompanied by an employee of the financial institution, (2) has written permission of the financial institution or (3) has a completed "Permission to Use Drive-Away License Plates" (form DSD 27B),
    3. Otherwise in connection with repossession or foreclosure of the vehicle on which there is a security interest securing a loan to a financial institution.
  • By a business engaged in automobile auction or the mounting, installing, servicing or repairing of equipment on or in a vehicle. The use of these plates is limited to the driving on the highway in order to test the installation, service, or repair at a distance of not more than 10 miles from the place of business or for the pick-up and delivery of a vehicle. When coming from an auto auction, a prospective purchaser of a motor vehicle, trailer, or semitrailer may operate such vehicle without a safety inspection prior to purchase. These plates shall not be used on vehicles employed for general transportation.


To obtain Drive-Away license plates, you must complete and mail the following to:

  • DMV Dealer Services Work Center
  • PO Box 27412
  • Richmond, VA 23269
  • A completed "Application for Dealer/Drive Away/Office Trailer Plates" (form DSD-9);
  • For non-financial institutions, a copy of your current business license, which shows the physical address of the location where the Drive-Away license plates will be kept;
  • For financial institutions, a copy of your current State Corporation Commission (SCC) license or a copy of the first page of your current charter, which shows the physical address of the location where the Drive-Away license plates will be kept; and
  • Proof of automobile liability insurance that insures the Drive-Away license plates-- Insurance must be maintained for as long as the plates remain valid.
  • Include appropriate payment: The fee for the first two Drive-Away license plates is $75.00 and each additional Drive-Away license plate is $20.

Should you have any questions, please contact the Dealer Services Work Center at (804) 367-0901 or (804) 367-1680, or send your correspondence to the address listed above.