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Discussion Starter #1
Anyone else get a letter recently from the DMV?

I got one on Saturday, said the law had been changed, effective JULY 1st 2007
(nice for them to tell me now)

Regarding Antique plates:


Antique License Plates and Special Plates
Virginia motorists who own antique vehicles should be aware of several changes governing the use of antique license plates.

* Applicants for antique license plates must show evidence of ownership or regular use of another passenger car or motorcycle.
* Applicants must submit notarized certification that their antique vehicle meets safety equipment requirements for the model year in which it was manufactured.
* Fees charged for registration and plate purchase changes from $10 annually to a one-time fee of $50.

Antique plates are available from DMV for vehicles with a model year that is more than 25 years old. New guidelines for these cars were prompted by concerns that many owners were registering older cars as antiques to avoid registration and safety inspection requirements.

Under the new law, if an antique vehicle owner is convicted of operating an antique vehicle determined to be unsafe or not properly equipped, DMV will suspend the owner's registration of the vehicle involved for five years.


Which, arguably, I had registered it as an antique to avoid not the expense but the hassle of registering it every year or other year. I own a couple of cars, I have forgotten/missed a registration deadline many a time. And then inspections? please- it seems like I have to do this every other month for one car or another. (wife's car, plus my real daily driver, plus the 85 spider)

I figured that at 25 years of age or older, Virginia DMV had already gotten their money from 12 two year registrations, plus 25 years of inspection fees - and this permanent registration was the reward for owning and maintaining an older vehicle.

I may re-register the 1981 car with real plates - it will pass inspection - but I've been thinking of selling it as of late and this may just have helped me make that decision.

Anyone else get this letter? Am I over reacting to these new restrictions?
 

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Discussion Starter #2
In the letter, but not excerpted from their web site -

I can drive a car with antique plates for the following reasons ONLY:

1. TO and FROM a car show / event / activity
2. For the purposes of buying or selling
3. To test something (vague? )
4. For a pleasure cruise, not to exceed 250 miles from home

(Do you think that they realize that just driving diagonally across RT 81 in VA is nearly 400 miles long?)

Get this:

If you are ticketed for this infraction, it is a class 4 misdemeanor.

BONUS:

You are then able to participate in Virginia's ramped up bad driver program, where any vehicle misdemeanor carries a 3 year $300 per year fine!
 

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I don't live in VA, but the rules are pretty much the same as you noted in OH, and it has never been an issue. I like the fact that one can pay $50 and the car is registered for years to come. (In OH, the one time $50 registration fee covers you for 50 years!) We also have restrictions on the "collector cars", but they haven't been an issue either. (These are not older than 25 years; they are just "classics", per the BMV's list.) Both types are exempt from any inspection and do require proving that you have a "regular" car that you drive. For the historic plate, you don't have to do anything after it is registered. For the collector cars, which still require annual registration, all you need to provide is the plate of your "regular" car in the registration form. Not a big deal at all...

In all cases, I have never had an issue driving the cars in the state or out-of-state, and we do bring the cars out to NJ regularly. The allowance to drive to any event, activity, etc. pretty much covers you to drive anywhere. The "testing" exemption allows you do work on your car and drive it or exercise it to make sure everything is OK. Also, unless people are very different in your state, I have never been bothered by any officer, and I do stretch the limits of the statues since I really only drive the Alfas. Don't sweat it, Fib, I'm sure you will be fine.

Best regards,
 

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Anyone else get a letter recently from the DMV?

* Applicants must submit notarized certification that their antique vehicle meets safety equipment requirements for the model year in which it was manufactured.
....
I plan to register my GTV-6 as an antique in 2009. How does one get the notiarized certification? By just certifying it yourself in the presence of a notary? Is there a DMV form for this?

The only part of the new law that seems harsh to me is the 5 year suspension clause. Suppose a piece of safety equipment fails during a drive (e.g. a windshield wiper) and then you get stopped?
 

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I don't think much has changed in the law - Although I don't remember the 250 mile restriction in pleasure rides, I do recall all of the other conditions being applicable when I registered my last "antique." I think enforcement will stay the same -- almost non-existant.

As for the inspection, it is basically a self-authentication that the car's safety equipment is consistent with the year it was built and that it is safe to drive on VA highways. You sign in front of a notary. I suppose they may use this to go after drivers of ancient cars that cause accidents because they have not maintained the car in drivable condition. I don't think this is a problem for most of us who take pretty good care of our old cars.
 

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I am trying to think when driving my Scorpion isn't:

3. To test something (vague? )
4. For a pleasure cruise, not to exceed 250 miles from home

That makes no sense at all...

Ed
 

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I got the letter a few months back for an older truck I registered antique, using plates from the same year as the truck (1958). The letter came with a form to be filled out, be notorized and then returned to the DMV. Virginia is simply trying to crack down on the abusive use of antique plates for getting around inspections, which I appreciate. I've seen many vehicles that didn't look road worthy being used as commuters with antique tags. Another tag VA watches is "farm use". I've seen absolute wrecks driving around town with those tags.
Reading Enrique's reply, it sounds like Ohio and VA are almost identical with their allowance and use of antique tags. When you get the letter, fill it out, have it notorized and send it in, and within 2 weeks you will get a new registration in the mail. Don't forget to put the new registration in the glove box. Then Drive and enjoy.
 

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Am I over reacting to these new restrictions?
Changes are never going to be more favorable to the resident - that's democracy for ya':). One thing I agree with is that the vehicle should be safe to drive but that should have already been effect.
 

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no big deal

Just fill in the form in front of a notary, sign and mail. I got my permanent registration today in the mail. Since I really do tend to comply with the driving criteria, it's no big deal.
 
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