Can I put a personalised or cherished registration on a lease car?

Searching for a number plate that says something about you, is a great deal of fun; once you've found your perfect number-plate is it possible to put it on a lease car?

The simple answer is, YE5U CAN

You can choose to have the plate before, or after, the car is delivered; but because the DVLA quotes a six to eight week turnaround, at busy times, most drivers get the car first and then change the plate. It’s not difficult, although there is quite a lot of to-ing and fro-ing with paperwork. How does a UK number plate work


How do I change to my private registration plate?

To start the process, you must take the plate off the vehicle it’s currently on; you can’t just switch it over to your new car, you must put it on to what is called a ‘retention document’. Bear with us, it is easier than it sounds and you can find all the steps in the process at the government website shown below.

Because, the vehicle belongs to the finance provider, the finance company must be named as a Nominee on the Certificate of Entitlement, (form V750).

This needs to be sent to the finance company, together with a note explaining what you’re doing and a small admin fee, usually around £35 to £40. The finance company should acknowledge receipt and send the paper work to the DVLA. The process is then in the DVLA’s hands.

Once you have their permission and authorisation to use your cherished plate, you can proceed to have one made, that’s if you haven’t already! Now you can put it on.

Don’t get too excited and change your cherished plate early.

Remember, it’s an offence to display a private registration until you’ve received confirmation from both the finance company and DVLA. Other than that, it really is quite a straightforward procedure.

What happens when my lease contract ends?

At the end of the contract, when you want to change into another vehicle and transfer the plate, it is probably best to start the ball rolling a couple of months beforehand to leave enough time to get everything in place before you change.

You can find lots of useful information at

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