Colorado DMV License Plates

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Home / DMV Information / Colorado / Renewal Plates

All U.S. states require that you have license plates on your car while driving on public roads. Colorado laws require most cars to carry two license plates, one on the front end and one on the rear end of the car. Motorcycles and trailers are excluded from this regulation and are only required to display one license plate at the rear of the car.

Every individual who purchases a car must obtain license plates. You have two options when you are licensing a new car. You can either purchase a new set of plates or transfer the license plates from the car you previously owned (if you were the legal owner of the car and the license plates are still valid).

If you are purchasing a car from an authorized dealer, you will be issued a temporary permit. The permit acts as your license plate and is valid for 60 days. During this period, you are required to obtain plates for your car. If you are purchasing a car from a private party, you may obtain a temporary permit at the nearest DMV office.

Most plates in Colorado are issued for a 12-month period and must be renewed every year. You must renew the plates during the month indicated on the car registration or during the 30-day grace period that follows. You must also contact the DMV and obtain a new set of plates if your license plates are damaged, lost, stolen, or mutilated.

Note: This article was accurate when it was published. Please confirm all details directly with the CO DMV. You can visit the CO DMV website or call the DMV for more information. is a privately held company and is in no way associated with the Department of Motor Vehicles, any other government agency, or the driving schools listed in this website. All external hyperlinks are provided for your information and for the benefit of the general public. does not testify to, sponsor or endorse the accuracy of the information provided on externally linked pages.