Starting in late May of this year, the North Carolina DMV began issuing a new kind of license plate sticker in an effort to significantly save money for the state—$70,000 per year in fact. The new gray stickers displaying both the month and year a license place expires are to be placed on the upper right-hand corner of the license plate. Drivers getting the new sticker should remove the old month sticker, colored red, from the upper left corner.

Reading this announcement reminded us of those troublesome registration violations drivers are likely to deal with at some point in their lives. And if you haven’t already, we’re sure you know of a family member or friend that has dealt with one. As a law firm that specializes in traffic violations and tickets, we thought we’d offer some helpful advice on the common types of registration violations and how to avoid them.

Expired Tags 

There were about 230,000 charges in 2014 for displaying an expired registration plate on a vehicle in North Carolina. It should come as no surprise that this is the most common registration violation. Having expired tags is also the second most common charged offense in the state, speeding being the first.

No Registration 

Everybody knows (or they should know!) they must have their vehicle registered, but unfortunately, no registration violations still happen. Over 20,000 people in North Carolina were charged with this in 2014, which goes hand-in-hand with failing to display current registration. Over 3,000 cases were charged for this offense in 2014.

Altered Registration 

Altering a registration card, title or plate is an absolute misdemeanor. More than 26,000 North Carolina divers were charged for this in 2014.

Revoked Registration 

It’s a violation to display a registration card, title or plate that has been cancelled, revoked or suspended. 2014 revealed over 36,000 North Carolina drivers charged.

Proper Display of License Plate and Tags 

According to G.S. 20-63(g), registration plates cannot be altered or concealed. This includes:

  • Bending or twisting the plate
  • Painting, stamping, etc. to alter the plate or it’s letters
  • Attempting to change a letter or figure
  • Displaying the plate other than the horizontal upright position

License plate frames and covers must also be used properly. Drivers cannot:

  • Cover any numbers, figures or registration stickers with materials that will make them difficult to read
  • Cover with a frame that makes numbers, letters or registration tags illegible
  • Cover any part of the plate that prevents traffic control or tolls from taking a photograph

Although drivers typically admit guilt from these types of violations and take the fine, not all traffic violations are so clear-cut. If you’ve been involved in a traffic-related incident our Sampson County traffic attorneys and Duplin Country traffic attorneys can help.

Give us a call at our Duplin County office (910-293-2220), our Sampson County office (910-592-2266), or simply fill out our contact form to get in touch.