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The proper use of dealer plates explained

Question: I was wondering if it is legal for a car dealership owner's family and extended family to all drive cars on "dealer plates."

Answer:  The answer to your question is the owner and spouse can drive with dealer plates. Their children cannot, unless they are a full-time employee or if they are part-time, only for business purposes.  Extended family and friends are not allowed. The Driver and Vehicle Service (DVS) spells out the usages very nicely when the dealer receives their dealer plates. 

Minnesota dealer rule 7400.6000 states the following: The registrar shall immediately revoke a dealer demonstration plate or a dealer in-transit plate when the registrar has sufficient cause to believe that the plate was used on a vehicle other than as provided in Minnesota Statutes.

When a dealer plate is revoked, the dealer shall surrender the plate to a peace officer or to the registrar at the time notice of revocation. If a revoked dealer plate is not at the dealer's place of business when a notice of the revocation is served, the dealer shall surrender the plate to the registrar within 48 hours after notice of the revocation is served.

The vehicle on which the dealer plate was misused must be titled and registered within 10 days of the revocation of the plate. There are several investigations for this violation that the State Patrol has acted upon from receiving a citizen's tip.

Dealers may display dealer plates only on vehicles they own or are holding for resale. The plate must also be firmly affixed to the rear of the vehicle. It cannot be displayed in the window. Only one plate is displayed on the vehicle. 

Some other examples of improper dealer plate use include consignment vehicles, courtesy or loaner cars, lease cars, tow trucks, service trucks, parts trucks, vehicles sold to an employee on contract, or a vehicle used by the spouse of a dealership's employee.

If you have any questions concerning traffic-related laws in Minnesota, please send your questions to:  Trooper Jesse Grabow, Minnesota State Patrol at 1000 Highway 10 W., Detroit Lakes, MN 56501. Or email