What are personalized license plates and how do I apply for one?

Personalized license plates, sometimes referred to as vanity plates, allow the owner of a vehicle to choose the letter/number combination that will be on their license plate. Personalized license plates may be purchased for passenger vehicles, motor homes, buses, pickups, vans, hearses, and motorcycles. Applications for personalized plates are processed at Secretary of State offices, through the Renewal by Mail unit, and online at ExpressSOS.

Owners receive a receipt pending Michigan Department of State approval. Approved personalized plates are mailed to the owner from Lansing within three weeks.

Final approval of the personalized plate selection is granted by the Michigan Department of State.

Personalized license plates cost the same as regular license plate plus a $30 service fee for a year. The service fee is prorated at $8 for the first month and $2 for each additional month up to 17 months. There is a $15 service fee for each year the personalized license plate is renewed. If the applicant already has a regular license plate on his/her vehicle, it can be credited towards the personalized plate.

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