Number plate certificate - how does it work?

DVLA number plate certificates

Number plate certificate - what is it?

A personalised number plate certificate is used to hold a the registration number while it's not on a car or other vehicle. It's handy when you're changing cars, if you don't have another one to move it to.

Two types of personalised number plate certificate

There are two types of personalised number plate certificate. The pink Certificate of Entitlement (V750), and green Retention Document (V778). They both work in pretty much the same way.

How do they work?

Most people need a personalised number plate certificate when they decide to sell their car. We often don't have another car to move the registration number to straightaway.

You can apply to retain the number, ready to put onto a new car when you have one. When your number plate is removed, it will be given to you on a Certificate. Then it's ready to put on another car when you're ready.

Your car also gets a replacement registration number at the same time.

Can I keep a number plate on a certificate as long as I want?

Yes, pretty much.

But, there is an expiry date. So you do need to renew the Certificate before it expires. Otherwise you will lose your personalised number plate.

What do I do with a number plate certificate?

When a personalised number plate is on a Certificate, you can transfer it to a car any time. Full instructions are here on how to transfer a personalised number plate. And you'll find information on the back of the certificate, in the small print.

The Certificate must have your name on it, as the Grantee (or Purchaser if it's a pink certificate) or the nominee. If it doesn't, you need to get the nominee name changed to yours on it. You will need the Grantee (or Purchaser) to sign the Certificate.

Important facts about V778 and V750 number plate certificates

  1. Certificates have an expiry date, so must be renewed if not used.
  2. If you don't renew the personalised number plate certificate, you lose the registration number.
  3. You can extend the Certificate expiry for 1, 2 or 3 years at a time.
  4. The registration number can only be transferred to a car in the name of the Grantee / Purchaser, or nominee.
  5. Only the Grantee or Purchaser named on the Certificate has full rights over the personalised number plate.

For more information about your own circumstances, contact the DVLA.

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