Dispose of old plates

Important information

  • Vehicle and vessel licensing offices can’t perform transactions on Saturday, December 10.
  • Vehicle and vessel online services won’t be available December 7-12 while we update our system.
  • On December 12, 2016, we’ll begin using a new vehicle and vessel computer system.
  • In the days following the launch of our new system, you may experience longer than usual wait times.

Learn more: DOL vehicle licensing system will be down on December 10 for system replacement (licensingexpress.wordpress.com).

If you replace any type of license plate except those listed below, you may dispose of the old plates in any of the following ways:

  • Take them to your local vehicle licensing office.
  • Mail them to us at:
    Department of Licensing
    1125 Washington St SE
    Olympia, WA 98504
  • Remove or invalidate the month and year tabs, bend the plates so they can’t be used on a vehicle, and recycle them so they can’t be confused with a valid Washington license plate. Don’t put them in curbside recycling unless you contact the recycler first to see if the plates will be accepted.
  • Remove or invalidate the month and year tabs and keep the plates. They can’t be displayed on a vehicle.

If you replace any of the following types of plates, you must return the old plates to a vehicle licensing office:

  • Commercial Vehicle plates (gross weight over 12,000 pounds)
  • Personalized plates
  • Disabled Parking plates
  • Collector Vehicle plates
  • Horseless carriage plates
  • Baseball Stadium plates
  • Amateur Radio Operator (HAM) plates
  • Disabled American Veteran plates
  • Purple Heart plates
  • Medal of Honor plates
  • Pearl Harbor survivor plates
  • Gold Star plates
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