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Beware of Lesser-Known Registration Plate Rules: Car Expert Warns of £1,000 Fines

A car expert has sounded the alarm on lesser-known registration plate rules that could result in drivers facing hefty fines of up to £1,000.

Jon Kirkbright, the sales director at Platehunter, a specialist in buying and selling private number plates, has emphasized the importance of staying informed about changes in regulations pertaining to number plates. With 11 years of industry experience, Kirkbright is well-versed in the intricacies of these rules.

One particular issue highlighted by the car expert is the practice of rearranging letters and numbers on number plates to create desirable words. However, he strongly advises motorists against doing so, as it can lead to significant penalties.

According to the Government, “Number plates (also known as licence plates) must show your registration number correctly. You cannot rearrange letters or numbers, or alter them so that they’re hard to read. Failure to comply may result in fines of up to £1,000, and your vehicle will fail its MOT test if driven with incorrectly displayed number plates.”

The current format for vehicle registration numbers was introduced in 2001 and consists of two letters indicating the region of registration, two numbers denoting the year of issue, and three random letters.

Kirkbright cautioned, “Some individuals may attempt to change the spacing on their number plates in an effort to make them resemble words or names more closely. However, by doing so, drivers run the risk of incurring costly fines.”

For those seeking number plates with specific combinations of letters or numbers, there are legal options available in the form of personalized number plates.

Platehunter, a trusted number plate supplier with 11 years of experience and over 56 million personalized number plates for sale, prides itself on providing affordable options starting from just £39 plus VAT and transfer fees.

However, altering the arrangement of letters and numbers is not the only concern that could result in fines for drivers. There are other rules that must be followed, including regulations regarding the color of the characters.

According to guidelines, number plates on vehicles must:

  • Be made from a reflective material
  • Display black characters on a white background (front plate)
  • Display black characters on a yellow background (rear plate)
  • Not feature a background pattern
  • Be marked to indicate the plate supplier
  • Bear a British Standard number (BS AU 145e) for plates fitted after September 1, 2021

The characters on the plates must not be removable or reflective, and if the number plates were fitted after September 1, 2021, they must be a single shade of black.

Additionally, number plates can have raised (3D) characters, display specific flags, symbols, and identifiers, or feature a green flash if the vehicle is zero-emission.

To avoid falling foul of the law, Kirkbright advises drivers to purchase number plates only from reputable dealers. He stresses the importance of ensuring that the seller is approved by the DVLA (Driver and Vehicle Licensing Agency). At Platehunter, number plates that comply with all font, color, spacing, and size regulations can be obtained for just £25, including delivery, with same-day dispatch possible depending on the order time.

For individuals interested in purchasing private number plates that resemble names, initials, or meaningful words, Platehunter’s website is recommended. In cases where the desired plates are not available, customers can provide their specifications, and they will be notified if a matching plate becomes available. Platehunter can also arrange for auctioning of any DVLA-issued number plate, as long as it is legal and has never been used before.

For further information or assistance with purchasing or selling a private number plate, visitors can explore Platehunter‘s website. Alternatively, Platehunter can be contacted and followed on  InstagramTwitter or Facebook.

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