Enforcing the License Plate law in Mass.

 

FYI

We were stopped the other afternoon by a Mass. State Trooper.

He advised that our license plate covers were no longer legal. Unfortunately, the auto part shops in Mass. don't know about this. We stopped in and told the C.A.P. store we bought our covers from.

No license plate covers, no extra lights around license plates, and the words "spirit of Massachusetts" can not be obstructed if you have a frame around your plate.

If you are out of state you are subject to Mass. laws.
(i.e. helmet laws).

We were not given a ticket, the Trooper was friendly,and informative (said we could thank the insurance company lobbyists for this law).

Forewarned is Forearmed

--
Originator of Keeping Your Windmill Alive. Live in MA & have a cooking website. 6 yr. member. http://kitchentoysmakecookingfun.blogspot.com/

Same here

We have had the same law in TX for a few years, no obstruction of any part of the state name.

--
Nuvi 2460LMT

I wonder

CherylMASS wrote:

If you are out of state you are subject to Mass. laws.
(i.e. helmet laws).

I wonder if this is correct? I know that Ohio requires both front and rear plates, but there is no problem with Kentucky or Michigan cars that have only rear plates. Kentucky does not require plates on small utility trailers. My father was stopped in Ohio, but recieved no ticket or warning because he was following the laws of his home state. I do know that one must follow helmet laws, but I'm now so sure about this one.

--
Some days you're the bug, Some days you're the windshield!!

I think they changed that law here in Texas

mmullins98 wrote:

We have had the same law in TX for a few years, no obstruction of any part of the state name.

--
Not doing anything worth a darn.

CherylMASS wrote:He

CherylMASS wrote:

He advised that our license plate covers were no longer legal. Unfortunately, the auto part shops in Mass. don't know about this. We stopped in and told the C.A.P. store we bought our covers from.

Cheryl, when you say "cover", do you mean a license plate frame or some sort of cover over the entire area of the license plate?

Is this a new law or something they are vigorously enforcing this year? I've heard of mutiple instances where people are being failed at time of annual inspection 'cause their plate frame is too wide and obscures "Spirit of America" or "Taxachusetts".

This rule is on the books in many states ...think "thin line" plate frames!!

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(2) Nuvi 1450LMT + 3597LMTHD + 2557LMT + DS61LMT-S Boston MA

Not an unusual law

A similar law is also found in Illinois and at least some other states, too, though it's unusual to see it enforced on visitors, though of course that is their right. Many people think that if they put a plastic cover over their license plate, it will fool enforcement cameras or speed radar. It does not. Mythbusters on Discovery TV proved that:
http://mythbustersresults.com/episode73
and
http://www.autoblog.com/2007/03/08/mythbusters-fail-to-foil-...
(In episode 73, linked above, they also debunked the use of sprays to fool enforcement cameras.)

I think a clear plastic cover on the front helps the license plate last longer, especially in states that use road salt, but some state legislatures want the plate uncovered regardless, and I removed mine in Illinois years ago after I heard a few people had been ticketed for it.

I know you got pulled over for it, Cheryl, but here at least, I don't think it's generally practiced as a primary-enforcement traffic law, unless you're using polarized plate covers which does seem to be an effort to evade enforcement. (A "primary enforcement" traffic law is one they'll pull you over for even if that's all they see you doing, as opposed to a "secondary enforcement" law, where you can get a ticket for it if they've pulled you over for something else.) It was nice that you got a courteous "heads-up".

--
JMoo On

MA RMV sez:

#24.

I was told my vehicle failed because my plate was illegible.

By state law, Massachusetts license plates must be readable from 60 feet away. Any green or red passenger plate, which has lost its reflective coating or paint or has been damaged, must be replaced. You can also be cited by law enforcement for this violation. The RMV encourages vehicle owners to swap illegible plates for a set of red plates at no fee. Faded and illegible plates can be swapped at any of the RMV's full serivce branch locations. A red plate that is lost or damaged can also be ordered at any branch or by calling the RMV Telephone Center at 617-351-4500. The cost of replacing these plates is $10 a plate and will be mailed to the registered owner.

#25.

I was told my vehicle failed because the dealer license plate frame obstructs the logo "The Spirit of America" or "Massachusetts."

Regulations require that all letters, numbers, stickers, and symbols must be clearly visible on the number plate. A number plate frame that obstructs any part of the plate is illegal, and you could be fined for having an obstructed plate.

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(2) Nuvi 1450LMT + 3597LMTHD + 2557LMT + DS61LMT-S Boston MA

.

In most states, it's legal to sell license plate covers and frames. But it's not legal for you to USE them on the road. There's a technical legal difference. And most auto parts like that have a disclaimer that advises that you check your local regulations.

MD Too

Maryland has similar laws.

--
RKF (Bethesda, MD) Garmin Nuvi 660, 360 & Street Pilot

There is no charge for replacement plates if they are illegible

I had to replace my -MA RED- plate due to not being able to pass the state inspection, there was no charge and I walked out of the registry with the plates that evening.

obfuscation is what brought on frame laws

NOTE:
This Is Not The Spray On Junk!

Passive anti-photo license plate covers, are made of plastic fresnel lenses either designed into the plastic or attached to the plastic cover. The plate is bolted against the license plate and the lens is designed to obscure the alpha-numeric characters at an angle of 20-40 degrees from the side of the road. This is the typical angle that photo cameras are installed on the side of the road, but can also be installed above the road on bridges or poles. The plates will distort the plate characters at all times from the side of the road, or from above the road, but not both. Police do not appreciate this as they drive by your vehicle and are not able to see your plate for a short period of time. In most states, this is called obfuscation; i.e., hiding the plate, and the police will write a ticket in many instances when they see a dark cover or a lens over the plate. When a bright light is pointed at the anti-photo cover as with a camera flash, the distorted characters will not show up in the photo image under normal photo imaging. If an analog picture camera is used these types of anti-photo covers will work great, if you don’t get a ticket for obscuring your plate. If digital imaging is used, as with most technology today, these types of anti-photo plate covers are worthless.
All thought the law is not new, the above is what is causing the heated enforcement around the country, and since they can't just single out covers, all frames and coves are fair game..

--
Using Android Based GPS.The above post and my sig reflects my own opinions, expressed for the purpose of informing or inspiring, not commanding. Naturally, you are free to reject or embrace whatever you read.

I don't believe it is a new law.

"Cheryl, when you say "cover", do you mean a license plate frame or some sort of cover over the entire area of the license plate?

Is this a new law or something they are vigorously enforcing this year? I've heard of mutiple instances where people are being failed at time of annual inspection 'cause their plate frame is too wide and obscures "Spirit of America" or "Taxachusetts"."

I don't believe it is a new law, but one that is being enforced. Our state, like most states, needs revenue.

I have a vanity plate "My Turn" (the kids are gone, now it's my turn). I wanted to protect it from New England winters and road rocks, so I have the plastic cover over it with a thin metal frame.

It would be great if each state could go back to one plate, one color. Our state has many plates...Red Sox, Patriots, Fish, Children, Animals, Lighthouses, etc. all for added revenue. Some cars still have green plates where you only need the back plate.
Red plates that aren't reflective are being rejected during yearly inspections. We had to leave the garage, go to the registry, turn in the non reflective plate, get a receipt that stated we ordered a new reflective plate, then take it back to the garage so he could put a passed inspection sticker on it.

Now we have reflective, unobstructed license plates. One of my vehicles has to be inspected this month, I cringe to think of what else might come up. Seems like every year it's something new.

--
Originator of Keeping Your Windmill Alive. Live in MA & have a cooking website. 6 yr. member. http://kitchentoysmakecookingfun.blogspot.com/

California has had this law

California has had this law for yesrs-- however they don't stop you for a license frame unless there is a covering over the plate. I have seen license plates covered with plastic and it was very hard to read the plate.

I always take the dealer frames off and trash them-- don't get paid to advertise for them.

--
NUVI 680, NUVI 5000, MS S&T,

You are one-half right.

donicus wrote:

I think they changed that law here in Texas

mmullins98 wrote:

We have had the same law in TX for a few years, no obstruction of any part of the state name.

On May 4, 2007, Governor Perry signed SB
369, amending Transportation Code Section
502.409.

(7) has a coating, covering, protective material, or other apparatus that:

(A) distorts angular visibility or detectability;

(B) alters or obscures one-half or more of the name of the state in which the vehicle is registered; or

(C) alters or obscures the letters or numbers of the license plate number or the color of the plate.

--
Nuvi 2460LMT

New reason to stop people

CherylMASS wrote:

I don't believe it is a new law, but one that is being enforced. Our state, like most states, needs revenue.

I have a vanity plate "My Turn" (the kids are gone, now it's my turn). I wanted to protect it from New England winters and road rocks, so I have the plastic cover over it with a thin metal frame.

Agreed, I don't believe this is new. For whatever reason, it's become a focus for them.

I've got a clear plastic cover on my front plate held in place by a thin frame. I supposed I'm in violation, too.

Was your recent encounter due to a rear plate, front plate or both, Cheryl?

--
(2) Nuvi 1450LMT + 3597LMTHD + 2557LMT + DS61LMT-S Boston MA

Mythbusters not always right.

dagarmin wrote:

Mythbusters on Discovery TV proved that:
http://mythbustersresults.com/episode73
and
http://www.autoblog.com/2007/03/08/mythbusters-fail-to-foil-...
(In episode 73, linked above, they also debunked the use of sprays to fool enforcement cameras.)

I take what they do on Mythbusters with a grain of salt. They said a snow plough can't flip a car with it's wake. They used a street plough going at 45mph on a calm, dry day.

Have them step up to highway ploughs (running 2 wide) going 80mph with the plough down on a windy day and tell me you can't flip a car. It happens at least once a year on the 401.

You can glaze the plates to have them reflect the light. Talk to a body shop guy and ask him to make up a gloss that changes colours. It'll be clear to black or clear to white (usually). Hallmark tools used to develop stop signs that would light up if a car light would hit it. They used the same technology to make a plate cover that would reflect the light back in to the source so all you would see is a blinding white light. I have a pair. It's too bad Hallmark went under developing this stuff.

--
Jesus died for your sins. If you don't sin, Jesus died for nothing.

Rear plate

uber360 wrote:
CherylMASS wrote:

I don't believe it is a new law, but one that is being enforced. Our state, like most states, needs revenue.

I have a vanity plate "My Turn" (the kids are gone, now it's my turn). I wanted to protect it from New England winters and road rocks, so I have the plastic cover over it with a thin metal frame.

Agreed, I don't believe this is new. For whatever reason, it's become a focus for them.

I've got a clear plastic cover on my front plate held in place by a thin frame. I supposed I'm in violation, too.

Was your recent encounter due to a rear plate, front plate or both, Cheryl?

Well, the Trooper was behind us, so I'm guessing he saw the back plate. When he came to the window, he never went to the front of the car to see if both plates were covered (they are).
Yes, you rebel you. You are breaking the law.
"for whatever reason" - revenue, fine money, insurance lobbyists wanting to jack up our premiums.

--
Originator of Keeping Your Windmill Alive. Live in MA & have a cooking website. 6 yr. member. http://kitchentoysmakecookingfun.blogspot.com/

SCOTUS says otherwise

uber360 wrote:

I was told my vehicle failed because the dealer license plate frame obstructs the logo "The Spirit of America" or "Massachusetts."

There is just one small problem with this logic, in 1977 the Supreme Court ruled in the case of Wooley v. Maynard, 430 U.S. 705, in favor of a person who insisted that he wanted to cover up part of his state's motto on a license plate. He found part of the motto objectionable and covered it. The case went all the way to the Supreme Court, where they agreed with the citizen.

See
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Live_Free_or_Die
for details.

I don't see how the court could suggest that, if they ruled covering part of a motto in this case was legal and within your rights that covering part or all of a different motto might not be any less valid, as it's the individual's choice what is objectionable to them. That's is not to says that it's your free speech right to cover the state name or even part of the identifying alpha numeric sequence of a license plate, but "The Spirit of America" or other logos that someone decided to force on you are definitely within your right to obscure.

There is also case law in

There is also case law in Ohio, I do not have the citation, where someone was able to beat a ticket for having the county covered up. If I remember right, it was because the county sticker was a non-essential part of the plate.

obstructed plates

most likely they passed this law because they dont want the red light cameras not being able to take a nice clear photo of your plates so they can send you that nice juicy $400 ticket for speeding or running that red light.

--
DriveSmart 50, DriveSmart 60, nuvi 2595, nuvi 3760,

license plate covers

Had my MA inspection done last week. He told me he has to point out that the frame around my license plate (rear only) should be removed. He said because of the red light cameras and ezpass cameras, the bottom of the plate could have a different saying,
ie: spirit of Massachusetts, Veterans, Commerical, Livery, etc. all with the same number. They have not been sure on who to bill. So I guess it is all about money.

--
Paul..... Nuvi 765T

License Plate Covers

I do not believe that Massachusetts, or any state for that matter, gives people license plates with the same number and the only difference being the saying at the bottom. What does the car's paper registration say? When the policeman enters the plate number, does the computer provide a list of all the cars with that plate number and their "saying"?

OK

Sundive wrote:
dagarmin wrote:

Mythbusters on Discovery TV proved that:
http://mythbustersresults.com/episode73
and
http://www.autoblog.com/2007/03/08/mythbusters-fail-to-foil-...
(In episode 73, linked above, they also debunked the use of sprays to fool enforcement cameras.)

I take what they do on Mythbusters with a grain of salt. They said a snow plough can't flip a car with it's wake. They used a street plough going at 45mph on a calm, dry day.

Have them step up to highway ploughs (running 2 wide) going 80mph with the plough down on a windy day and tell me you can't flip a car. It happens at least once a year on the 401.

You can glaze the plates to have them reflect the light. Talk to a body shop guy and ask him to make up a gloss that changes colours. It'll be clear to black or clear to white (usually). Hallmark tools used to develop stop signs that would light up if a car light would hit it. They used the same technology to make a plate cover that would reflect the light back in to the source so all you would see is a blinding white light. I have a pair. It's too bad Hallmark went under developing this stuff.

Sure, nobody has a monopoly on the truth, Mythbusters included, and you can choose to disregard their reports on license plate covers and sprays because you didn't like their story on snowplows, but until I see independent research that says different (there have been other tests of covers and sprays that say they don't work, IIRC, though I'm too lazy to search for them), I'm going to accept Mythbusters' research on this question. I don't think covers and sprays beat enforcement cameras or speed radar.

--
JMoo On

Sorry

david_kahn wrote:

I do not believe that Massachusetts, or any state for that matter, gives people license plates with the same number and the only difference being the saying at the bottom. What does the car's paper registration say? When the policeman enters the plate number, does the computer provide a list of all the cars with that plate number and their "saying"?

I have seen my exact numbers(I have a 3 number plate) on a MA plate with "Livery" on the bottom instead of "Spirit of Massachusetts". What I said, what was told to me, it was for camera use. Common sense tells you that, if a policeman stops you, he has your registration with the numbers on it. A camera only takes a picture of your plate

--
Paul..... Nuvi 765T

California - you cannot block electronic sensors with covers

jwc3006 wrote:

California has had this law for yesrs-- however they don't stop you for a license frame unless there is a covering over the plate. I have seen license plates covered with plastic and it was very hard to read the plate.

I always take the dealer frames off and trash them-- don't get paid to advertise for them.

My information was that some were using covers, not necessarily frames, to effectively block at least part of the license plate information from electronic sensors used in red-light cameras. Thus, as far as I was able to glean,:

"A casing, shield, frame, border, product, or other device that obstructs or impairs the reading or recognition of a license plate by an electronic device operated by state or local law enforcement, an electronic device operated in connection with a toll road, high-occupancy toll lane, toll bridge, or other toll facility, or a remote emission sensing device, as specified in Sections 44081 and 44081.6 of the Health and Safety Code, shall not be installed on, or affixed to, a vehicle."

This is in addition to the rules requiring rear license plate lamps, license plates be kept clean, clearly visible by law enforcement for a specified number of feet from the plate, et cetera.

I think the point is being made that you can make no attempt to cover the number or the tags on the vehicle. As for state mottoes, I think it would be silly to enforce that rule in a courtroom. It makes no legal sense [to me, anyway].

--
Garmin DriveSmart™ 65 & Traffic in Bakersfield, CA

Mythbusters busted myth, busted. for about $5.00

dagarmin wrote:

Sure, nobody has a monopoly on the truth, Mythbusters included, and you can choose to disregard their reports on license plate covers and sprays because you didn't like their story on snowplows, but until I see independent research that says different (there have been other tests of covers and sprays that say they don't work, IIRC, though I'm too lazy to search for them), I'm going to accept Mythbusters' research on this question. I don't think covers and sprays beat enforcement cameras or speed radar.

Thats easy enough and should only cost about $5.00 bucks to prove. Go to Walmart and the crap they sell at the checkout, on the wall after you actually check out you will find flexible sheet plastic Fresnel reading lenses. They are the lenses that are made of concentric circles.

take the sheet and lay it on it's side, so it's wider than high. Measure it to find the center and cut the sheet in half so you have two pieces.

Now take one of the pieces so when you look at it the half circles make a rainbow pattern. with the lens in that position and the ridges facing outward place it inside the the License plate cover and tape it to secure it. replace the plate cover.

Now stand on a stool and look down at the plate, and there you go, Mythbusters busted myth, busted.

Of course I am telling you how to do this for educational purposes. And I don't recommend the Fresnel type of plate obfuscation to break the law.

http://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/obfuscation

Pay special attention to figure three to understand why it works.
http://www.lanternroom.com/misc/freslens.htm

--
Using Android Based GPS.The above post and my sig reflects my own opinions, expressed for the purpose of informing or inspiring, not commanding. Naturally, you are free to reject or embrace whatever you read.

Too Many Vanity Plates...

Obscuring the state of issuance has become much more of a problem since the explosive growth of vanity plates. States are issuing so many plate variants these days, Police Officers can no longer determine the state of issuance of a plate (especially if it is out of state)if the State name is obscured. (It can also foil the guy who is reviewing the red light/ speed cam data for an out of state violator)

This is very similiar to a

This is very similiar to a couple of years ago in Florida, people were being stopped for this.
It was determined then, just as the Court decision shown above, you CAN cover the plate if it does not alter the identity of the registration. So, any of the numbers, letters, or type (Combo, Passenger, Livery etc...) registration date, and State must be seen. The rest does not and if you were so inclined you could win in court in my opinion, just as some did in Florida.

In addition, after calling the CT DMV, they confirmed, CT CANNOT enforce another state's plate law, though covering any of the above mentioned parts of the plate even if your state does not specifically address it would probably not hold up in court. I believe if your state allows you to cover your plate with whatever, short of obscuring the actual plate info, another state may not enforce their stricter law if you are passing through. I can only guess the motorcycle helmet law is somehow different, because that can indeed be enforced by Mass even if your state does not have one.

Mass was issuing tickets to CT fireman years ago because their emergency lights were the color of MASS Trooper lights. I do not know how it got resolved, but they stopped that after alot was written about it.....I'm not sure they could do it unless the lights were actually being used. The issue revolved around the word "display" of lights.

--
Nuvi 765T, Street Pilot I5, Nuvi 750, Nuvi 3570

NJ fines for "covering" plates...

...anyways it is covered. I had a friend got fined for using black frame (comes usually from dealership with their name and website or other info) that covered Garden State from top of the plate!

The ticket read "Covering License Plate" in the description.

Hope this helps!!!
Best
R

So tell me Cheryl...

...the last time I set foot in a Mass. RMV office (around 2000 or so), they were still using a 1950's era teletype machine for interoffice communication, clacking away at 75 WPM, and there was a sign on the wall, behind the counter, which read "Working here is liking pissing in your pants. It gives you a warm feeling, but no one notices."

i.e. Has anything changed in Mass. and the RMV beyond wasting time and money enforcing idiotic laws?

GC

--
Nuvi 350, GPS Map 76CX

CherylMASS wrote: If you

CherylMASS wrote:

If you are out of state you are subject to Mass. laws.
(i.e. helmet laws).

Unfortunately that is one of those things that cannot be legally enforced. The laws relating to vehicle plates, drivers license and certain other things applies only from the persons home state, not the state they are driving in at that time.

--
Garmin c330 w/ 2011 maps

Careful

While not a lawyer, I thought any out of towner (state or province) had to abide by the laws of the state/province being visited. I also thought that some of the laws made provision for out of state/province travellers dealing with some things like licence plates and driving.

The most obvious one like seatbelts, motorcycle helmets and cell phones require a traveller to follow the laws of the state/province they are in - not necessarily the home state/province.

Interstingly the province of Quebec REQUIRED snow tires last year and most drivers got them if they thought they might be travelling there!

Am I subject to California polution laws if I travel to California from out of country?

What about cars with European plates in either Canada or the US - anyone know?
Just my two cents worth anyway!

--
Tom

It's convoluted, but...

birchtree wrote:

While not a lawyer, I thought any out of towner (state or province) had to abide by the laws of the state/province being visited. I also thought that some of the laws made provision for out of state/province travellers dealing with some things like licence plates and driving.

The most obvious one like seatbelts, motorcycle helmets and cell phones require a traveller to follow the laws of the state/province they are in - not necessarily the home state/province.

Interstingly the province of Quebec REQUIRED snow tires last year and most drivers got them if they thought they might be travelling there!

Am I subject to California polution laws if I travel to California from out of country?

What about cars with European plates in either Canada or the US - anyone know?
Just my two cents worth anyway!

It's a little convoluted but from my understanding (and I'm not a lawyer nor play one on TV either) is that laws relating to equipment such as pollution equipment are enforceable only on vehicles that are licensed in that area. There are some laws (at least in the US that are uniform as in federal) such as the ability to turn right on red (unless there is a sign specifically banning it at the intersection). Seat belt use I believe is another of those uniform laws.

If plate covers are allowed in the state/province of registry then another state cannot force you to remove equipment or devices that are legal at your home UNLESS you register the vehicle in that state. That doesn't mean you can't be stopped - it just means you cannot be cited for having a cover.

--
ɐ‾nsǝɹ Just one click away from the end of the Internet

Not too convoluted

Thank you. Interestingly, we have a cell phone law (must be hands free) and the province recently passed a law prohibiting smoking in a vehicle with children. The local police are having a field day trying to figure out how to enforce it.....if the can. Me thinks the first citation will result in a human rights challenge!

I'm sure there are other nutty laws - or godd ones that are impossible to enforce. I've given mine!

--
Tom

Fuel for the Fire: $200

Article from: www.thenewspaper.com/news/28/2804.asp

6/11/2009

Arizona License Plate Law to Preserve Photo Ticket Revenue

Arizona to continue with $200 tickets for license plate frames that partially cover the state name.

An Arizona state Senate committee voted 4-2 on Tuesday to continue, for now, the practice of allowing police to pull over and fine motorists who use certain types of license plate frames. State Senators Jay Tibshraeny (R-Chandler) and Thayer Verschoor (R-Gilbert) had unsuccessfully introduced legislation to gut a state law that took effect in January.

"A person shall maintain each license plate so it is clearly legible and so that the name of this state at the top of the license plate is not obscured," Arizona Code Section 28-2354 states.

Although the distinctive colors and cactus designs of Arizona's basic plates are readily identifiable to the human eye, visibility of the state name is important for the optical character recognition software used by photo enforcement companies. Motorists run afoul of this law if even a tiny portion of the word "Arizona" is covered by a frame and are subject to being stopped and searched and a $200 ticket imposed. Tibshraeny and Verschoor had sought to eliminate the practice and give police only the power to issue warnings. The Senate Natural Resources, Infrastructure and Public Debt Committee, however, insisted on collecting fine revenue.

In Texas, a similar license plate law became controversial when cities like Houston planned to raise $1.4 million in revenue with license plate citations. The Texas legislature eventually reduced the penalty to $10.

In Arizona's lower chamber, a competing license plate reform proposal, House Bill 2010, was given preliminary approval earlier this year. The bill's sponsor, state Representative Bill Konopnicki (R-Safford), sought to eliminate the language about partially covering up the state's name, which he saw as the heart of the legislative problem.

"I'm not sure that there should be any fine," Konopnicki said in February.

Konopnicki was concerned that the statute as written would be misused to create probable cause for searches that would not otherwise exist. He claimed that he had received 4000 emails in support of his legislation, but the House Transportation and Infrastructure Committee could not give up on the idea of imposing a fine. It rewrote Konopnicki's bill to make covering up any portion of the state name a secondary offense carrying a $30 fine. Such fines could be easily added to a photo radar or red light camera ticket under a "secondary violations" clause in the photo enforcement contract for cities like Phoenix. The amended proposal would still have to clear both the full House and Senate before being sent to the governor.

--
(2) Nuvi 1450LMT + 3597LMTHD + 2557LMT + DS61LMT-S Boston MA

What is happening in Arizona??

uber360 wrote:

Motorists run afoul of this law if even a tiny portion of the word "Arizona" is covered by a frame and are subject to being stopped and searched and a $200 ticket imposed.

and SEARCHED?? Arizona police can conduct a warrantless search of the cars of people stopped for having the word "Arizona" on their plate partially covered? How does an arrest based on evidence found in such a search, with no other cause, stand up in court? That's ridiculous! What the heck is going in that state?

--
JMoo On

Here is the North Carolina Law

(g) Alteration, Disguise, or Concealment of Numbers. – Any operator of a motor
vehicle who shall willfully mutilate, bend, twist, cover or cause to be covered or
partially covered by any bumper, light, spare tire, tire rack, strap, or other device, or
who shall paint, enamel, emboss, stamp, print, perforate, or alter or add to or cut off any
part or portion of a registration plate or the figures or letters thereon, or who shall place
or deposit or cause to be placed or deposited any oil, grease, or other substance upon
such registration plates for the purpose of making dust adhere thereto, or who shall
deface, disfigure, change, or attempt to change any letter or figure thereon, or who shall
display a number plate in other than a horizontal upright position, shall be guilty of a
Class 2 misdemeanor. Any operator of a motor vehicle who shall willfully cover or
cause to be covered any part or portion of a registration plate or the figures or letters
thereon by any device designed or intended to prevent or interfere with the taking of a
clear photograph of a registration plate by a traffic control or toll collection system
using cameras commits an infraction and shall be fined under G.S. 14-3.1. Any operator
of a motor vehicle who shall otherwise intentionally cover any number or registration
renewal sticker on a registration plate with any material that makes the number or
registration renewal sticker illegible commits an infraction and shall be fined under G.S.
14-3.1. Nothing in this subsection shall prohibit the use of transparent covers that are
not designed or intended to prevent or interfere with the taking of a clear photograph of
a registration plate by a traffic control or toll collection system using cameras.

Don't like the law? Run for Office and change them

Roger Vanderpool, director of the Arizona Department of Public Safety, and Stacey K. Stanton, director of the Arizona Department of Transportation/ Motor Vehicle Division (ADOT/MVD), want to remind the motoring public of an important change to the requirements for the attachment and display of the Arizona license plate that became effective on Jan. 1, 2009.

Don't agree? It doesn't really matter, So get ready to open your wallet,because simply put your breaking the Law if you cover any text on your plate (tag).

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http://prescottenews.com/news/current-news/license-plate-dis...

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Using Android Based GPS.The above post and my sig reflects my own opinions, expressed for the purpose of informing or inspiring, not commanding. Naturally, you are free to reject or embrace whatever you read.

Re: Enforcing the License Plate law in Mass.

Sorry to be the one to say it but this has been the law in Mass for a very long time (since I got my licence) (seatbelts were still kinda a novelty).

Nothing can obstruct the license plate in any way, the new change that went into effect (as I understand it) is that now *lights* around the plate which make it impossible to read are now a no-no.

Frames and "covers" are strictly out. You must have the plate properly affixed to the vehicle, no strings, ty-wraps, magnets holding it to the vehicle.

Is not allowed, plain and simple. Never has been.

And to this day, I see no reasonable reason for covering the plate or putting a frame on it unless you're trying to hide something which means you're doing something wrong.

Before anyone considers arguing with me in an effort to correct my opinion, I'll tell you that I'm a harda$$ about it, the license plate isn't a decoration, it's there for identification and as such, it should be *easy* to read. This crap with states having 30-40 (Florida has more than 50) different plates to commemorate every little thing is just plain stupid. YMMV

I guess everyone will have

I guess everyone will have to switch to the rotating plate ploy used in one of the early James Bond movies!

Fred

New York State

In New York no plate cover is allowed and no frame is allowed. It has been that way for 40 years that I know of. They recently outlawed extra lights around the plate, such as a neon frame.

Since they installed red light cameras last year, we see more and more plate covers. I saw one today that could not be read from ten feet away, straight on. That is really asking for trouble. Once the cops start writing summonses for these covers that is one more source of revenue.

dobs108

Mmm...

dobs108 wrote:

In New York no plate cover is allowed and no frame is allowed. It has been that way for 40 years that I know of. They recently outlawed extra lights around the plate, such as a neon frame.

Since they installed red light cameras last year, we see more and more plate covers. I saw one today that could not be read from ten feet away, straight on. That is really asking for trouble. Once the cops start writing summonses for these covers that is one more source of revenue.

dobs108

Interesting. I thought that was just NYC, and for the past 10 years. One of my cars is 16 years old and it was sold to me with a frame around both plates and this happened in NYC, from one of the largest dealers also (Potamkin)

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"Enforcing"

mtiernan wrote:

Sorry to be the one to say it but this has been the law in Mass for a very long time (since I got my licence) (seatbelts were still kinda a novelty).

Nothing can obstruct the license plate in any way, the new change that went into effect (as I understand it) is that now *lights* around the plate which make it impossible to read are now a no-no.

Frames and "covers" are strictly out. You must have the plate properly affixed to the vehicle, no strings, ty-wraps, magnets holding it to the vehicle.

Is not allowed, plain and simple. Never has been.

And to this day, I see no reasonable reason for covering the plate or putting a frame on it unless you're trying to hide something which means you're doing something wrong.

Before anyone considers arguing with me in an effort to correct my opinion, I'll tell you that I'm a harda$$ about it, the license plate isn't a decoration, it's there for identification and as such, it should be *easy* to read. This crap with states having 30-40 (Florida has more than 50) different plates to commemorate every little thing is just plain stupid. YMMV

"Sorry to be the one to say it,etc."

Yup, that's why the topic is "Enforcing". I know it's been on the books, but to my knowledge, it's only been recently that the police have been cracking down because of the EZ Pass lanes and the red light cameras being in place now.

"correct your opinion" An opinion is your own and can't be corrected, everyone is entitled to one! smile

I agree that each state should have one plate. As a kid we would be able to identify state plates by color, now you have no idea until you are up close.

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Frame around plate

Thanos_of_MW wrote:

One of my cars is 16 years old and it was sold to me with a frame around both plates and this happened in NYC, from one of the largest dealers also (Potamkin)

It is NY State law. You are right - every dealer delivers a new car with a dealer frame around the plate, and this has always been illegal.

dobs108

No front plate at red light cameras

New York and other states who provide two plates require that both a front and rear plate be on the car at all times.

It seems that there are at least two red light cameras that look at the front plate, and not the rear one. They are located on the service roads of I495 and a road that crosses the interstate on a bridge with two traffic signals in Suffolk County NY. The cameras cannot be installed behind the car in the usual manner because the bridge prevents it. Instead, on the corner ahead of the car is a camera that looks at the front of the car. Cars from other states that do not require a front plate get a free pass at these cameras!

dobs108

Michigan solved the problem

with multiple plate designs ... designs / logos are restricted to the left side of specialty plates, numbers/letters are unique across all classifications (auto/truck, trailer, motorcycle, historic, etc.) ... no two plates have the same numbers. All license plates, regardless of classification, have the same MICHIGAN, in the same typeface and the same color (blue), on the same background (white), with the only exceptions being the current Spectacular Peninsulas design, which I don't particularly care for, and the Great Lakes Splendor design, which was a favorite of mine. Still, we had the old white-on-blue license plate for over 20 years, and everyone had the same plate ... they were really boring back in those days.

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it's the dog's fault

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This is nothing new in the Commonwealth of Massachusetts.

In fact, they've been pulling over people with covers, caps for about two decades now. read the Driver's manual and catch people, then go look at mass.gov and look up the cmr laws applying. If you enter a state, those are the laws that override wherever that plate says you are from. This is nothing new. If it is new to you and are a resident of Massachusetts, you are and have been uninformed. By the way, we have a lower tax rate, better schools, less unemployment then most of the states in the Union....Why do you think that is? Pay your taxes cheap skates. Funny to see all of the out of state plates trying to get work here.