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CHAPTER 26. DEALER LICENSE PLATES

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IC 9-18-26 Chapter 26. Dealer License Plates IC 9-18-26-1 Applications; registration numbers; certificates of registration; plates Sec. 1. A person licensed under IC 9-23-2 may apply for a dealer license plate. The application must include any information the secretary of state reasonably requires. Upon application, a distinctive registration number shall be assigned to each applicant. Two (2) certificates of registration and two (2) metal license plates bearing the applicant's registration number shall then be issued to the applicant. As added by P.L.2-1991, SEC.6. Amended by P.L.106-2008, SEC.5. IC 9-18-26-2 Classifications Sec. 2. (a) The secretary of state shall issue dealer license plates under this chapter according to the following classifications: (1) Dealer-new. (2) Dealer-used. (3) Manufacturer. (b) The secretary of state may adopt rules under IC 4-22-2 to establish additional classifications of dealer license plates and may prescribe the general conditions for usage of an additional classification. The secretary of state shall establish the classification of antique car museum dealer license plates. As added by P.L.2-1991, SEC.6. Amended by P.L.118-1998, SEC.12; P.L.106-2008, SEC.6. IC 9-18-26-2.5 Research and development license plates; issuance; rules; fees; display Sec. 2.5. (a) The secretary of state shall: (1) issue a research and development license plate under this chapter to a manufacturer of a vehicle subcomponent system; and (2) adopt rules under IC 4-22-2 to prescribe the general conditions for the: (A) application; (B) issuance; and (C) use; of research and development license plates for manufacturers of vehicle component systems. (b) The fee for a research and development license plate for a manufacturer of a vehicle subcomponent system is the fee under IC 9-29-5-14.5. (c) A research and development license plate for a manufacturer of a vehicle subcomponent system shall be displayed in accordance with IC 9-18-2-26. As added by P.L.93-2010, SEC.4. IC 9-18-26-3 Design Sec. 3. The secretary of state shall determine the color, dimension, and style of the letters and the information required on a dealer license plate issued under this chapter. As added by P.L.2-1991, SEC.6. Amended by P.L.106-2008, SEC.7. IC 9-18-26-4 Additional plates Sec. 4. Upon payment of the fee under IC 9-29-8, an applicant may obtain additional dealer license plates of the same category. The applicant must demonstrate the applicant's need for additional plates by stating the applicant's number of employees, annual sales, and other supporting factors. The secretary of state shall determine whether the applicant is entitled to additional plates. As added by P.L.2-1991, SEC.6. Amended by P.L.106-2008, SEC.8. IC 9-18-26-5 Expiration Sec. 5. Dealer license plates issued to licensed dealers under this chapter expire as follows: (1) A person whose business name begins with the letters A through B, inclusive, March 1 of each year. (2) A person whose business name begins with the letters C through D, inclusive, April 1 of each year. (3) A person whose business name begins with the letters E through G, inclusive, May 1 of each year. (4) A person whose business name begins with the letters H through I, inclusive, June 1 of each year. (5) A person whose business name begins with the letters J through L, inclusive, July 1 of each year. (6) A person whose business name begins with the letters M through O, inclusive, August 1 of each year. (7) A person whose business name begins with the letters P through R, inclusive, September 1 of each year. (8) A person whose business name begins with the letters S through T, inclusive, October 1 of each year. (9) A person whose business name begins with the letters U through Z, inclusive, November 1 of each year. Dealer license plates issued to a sole proprietor expire based upon the name of the sole proprietorship. As added by P.L.2-1991, SEC.6. Amended by P.L.95-1997, SEC.2. IC 9-18-26-6 Use restrictions Sec. 6. Except as provided in sections 7 and 8 of this chapter, dealer-new, dealer-used, and manufacturer license plates may only be used on motor vehicles in the: (1) dealer's inventory being held for sale; (2) usual operation of that manufacturer's or dealer's business; (3) movement of that manufacturer's or dealer's inventory; or (4) inventory of a manufacturer or dealer that is unattended by that manufacturer or dealer or the dealer's agent for a maximum of ten (10) days by a prospective buyer or a service customer. As added by P.L.2-1991, SEC.6. IC 9-18-26-7 Unrestricted use under tax avoidance rules Sec. 7. Dealer-new, dealer-used, and manufacturer license plates may be used without restriction by a manufacturer, a dealer, or an employee of a manufacturer or a dealer under rules adopted by the secretary of state to prohibit use of the plates solely to avoid payment of applicable taxes. As added by P.L.2-1991, SEC.6. Amended by P.L.106-2008, SEC.9. IC 9-18-26-8 Unrestricted use; rules Sec. 8. Dealer-new, dealer-used, and manufacturer license plates may be used without restriction by a designee of a dealer or a designee of a manufacturer under rules adopted by the secretary of state. The rules must provide the following: (1) The dealer or manufacturer is to be assessed and pay the motor vehicle excise tax under IC 6-6-5 attributable to that part of the total year that the designee operates the motor vehicle. (2) The dealer or manufacturer shall report to the secretary of state the date of assignment to a designee, the designee's name and address, and the date of termination of the assignment within ten (10) days of the assignment or termination. (3) The tax calculated in subdivision (1) shall be paid within thirty (30) days of the termination of the assignment to the designee or at the time the dealer or manufacturer purchases license plates under this chapter. As added by P.L.2-1991, SEC.6. Amended by P.L.93-2010, SEC.5. IC 9-18-26-9 Use prohibited on leased vehicles Sec. 9. Dealer-new, dealer-used, and manufacturer license plates may not be used on a vehicle that: (1) is required to be registered; and (2) has a fee charged by dealers to others for the use of the vehicle. As added by P.L.2-1991, SEC.6. IC 9-18-26-10 Interim plates Sec. 10. (a) The secretary of state may issue an interim license plate to a dealer or manufacturer who is licensed and has been issued a license plate under section 1 of this chapter. (b) The secretary of state shall prescribe the form of an interim license plate issued under this section. However, a plate must bear the assigned registration number and provide sufficient space for the expiration date as provided in subsection (c). (c) Whenever a dealer or manufacturer sells a motor vehicle, the dealer or manufacturer may provide the buyer with an interim license plate. The dealer shall, in the manner provided by the secretary of state, affix on the plate in numerals and letters at least three (3) inches high the date on which the interim license plate expires. (d) An interim license plate authorizes a motor vehicle owner to operate the vehicle for a maximum period of thirty-one (31) days after the date of delivery of the vehicle to the vehicle's owner or until a regular license plate is issued, whichever occurs first. (e) A motor vehicle that is required by law to display license plates on the front and rear of the vehicle is only required to display a single interim plate. As added by P.L.2-1991, SEC.6. Amended by P.L.68-1992, SEC.1; P.L.106-2008, SEC.10. IC 9-18-26-11 Violations; misdemeanor Sec. 11. Except as provided in sections 12 and 13 of this chapter, a person who violates this chapter commits a Class B misdemeanor. As added by P.L.1-1992, SEC.37. IC 9-18-26-12 Violation of rule; infraction Sec. 12. A person who knowingly violates a rule adopted by the secretary of state regarding the classification and use of a dealer plate or the use of a research and development license plate commits a Class A infraction. As added by P.L.1-1992, SEC.38. Amended by P.L.106-2008, SEC.11; P.L.93-2010, SEC.6. IC 9-18-26-13 Display of altered license plate; misdemeanor Sec. 13. A person who operates a vehicle displaying an altered interim license plate issued under section 10 of this chapter commits a Class C misdemeanor. As added by P.L.1-1992, SEC.39. IC 9-18-26-14 Civil penalties Sec. 14. A person who violates this chapter or a rule or order of the secretary of state issued under this chapter is subject to a civil penalty of not less than fifty dollars ($50) and not more than one thousand dollars ($1,000) for each day of violation and for each act of violation, as determined by the court. All civil penalties recovered under this chapter shall be paid to the state. As added by P.L.1-1992, SEC.40. Amended by P.L.106-2008, SEC.12. IC 9-18-26-15 Additional penalty Sec. 15. In addition to the civil penalty imposed under section 14 of this chapter, the secretary of state may restrict, suspend, or revoke a dealer permanent or interim license plate that was issued to the violator. As added by P.L.1-1992, SEC.41. Amended by P.L.125-1995, SEC.7; P.L.176-2001, SEC.7; P.L.106-2008, SEC.13. IC 9-18-26-16 Injunctions Sec. 16. Whenever a person violates this chapter or a rule or order of the secretary of state issued under this chapter, the secretary of state may institute a civil action in any circuit or superior court of Indiana for injunctive relief to restrain the person from continuing the activity or for the assessment and recovery of the civil penalty provided in section 14 of this chapter, or both. As added by P.L.1-1992, SEC.42. Amended by P.L.106-2008, SEC.14. IC 9-18-26-17 Actions by attorney general Sec. 17. At the request of the secretary of state, the attorney general shall institute and conduct an action in the name of the state for: (1) injunctive relief or to recover the civil penalty provided by section 14 of this chapter; (2) the injunctive relief provided by section 16 of this chapter; or (3) both. As added by P.L.1-1992, SEC.43. Amended by P.L.106-2008, SEC.15. IC 9-18-26-18 Records of interim plate use Sec. 18. (a) As used in this section, "records" includes, but is not limited to, the following: (1) Bills of sale. (2) Finance agreements. (3) Titles. (4) Inventory records. (5) Sales receipts from auctions. (6) Form ST-108 (department of state revenue certificate of gross retail or use tax paid on the purchase of a motor vehicle or watercraft). (b) All records directly related to the use of interim plates by a dealer must be made available to an investigating employee of the secretary of state upon demand at the dealer's place of business. As added by P.L.125-1995, SEC.8. Amended by P.L.106-2008, SEC.16; P.L.179-2009, SEC.1.
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  • IC 9-18-26
         Chapter 26. Dealer License Plates

    IC 9-18-26-1
    Applications; registration numbers; certificates of registration; plates
        
    Sec. 1. A person licensed under IC 9-23-2 may apply for a dealer license plate. The application must include any information the secretary of state reasonably requires. Upon application, a distinctive registration number shall be assigned to each applicant. Two (2) certificates of registration and two (2) metal license plates bearing the applicant's registration number shall then be issued to the applicant.
    As added by P.L.2-1991, SEC.6. Amended by P.L.106-2008, SEC.5.

    IC 9-18-26-2
    Classifications
        
    Sec. 2. (a) The secretary of state shall issue dealer license plates under this chapter according to the following classifications:
            (1) Dealer-new.
            (2) Dealer-used.
            (3) Manufacturer.
        (b) The secretary of state may adopt rules under IC 4-22-2 to establish additional classifications of dealer license plates and may prescribe the general conditions for usage of an additional classification. The secretary of state shall establish the classification of antique car museum dealer license plates.
    As added by P.L.2-1991, SEC.6. Amended by P.L.118-1998, SEC.12; P.L.106-2008, SEC.6.

    IC 9-18-26-2.5
    Research and development license plates; issuance; rules; fees; display
        
    Sec. 2.5. (a) The secretary of state shall:
            (1) issue a research and development license plate under this chapter to a manufacturer of a vehicle subcomponent system; and
            (2) adopt rules under IC 4-22-2 to prescribe the general conditions for the:
                (A) application;
                (B) issuance; and
                (C) use;
            of research and development license plates for manufacturers of vehicle component systems.
        (b) The fee for a research and development license plate for a manufacturer of a vehicle subcomponent system is the fee under IC 9-29-5-14.5.
        (c) A research and development license plate for a manufacturer of a vehicle subcomponent system shall be displayed in accordance with IC 9-18-2-26. As added by P.L.93-2010, SEC.4.

    IC 9-18-26-3
    Design
        
    Sec. 3. The secretary of state shall determine the color, dimension, and style of the letters and the information required on a dealer license plate issued under this chapter.
    As added by P.L.2-1991, SEC.6. Amended by P.L.106-2008, SEC.7.

    IC 9-18-26-4
    Additional plates
        
    Sec. 4. Upon payment of the fee under IC 9-29-8, an applicant may obtain additional dealer license plates of the same category. The applicant must demonstrate the applicant's need for additional plates by stating the applicant's number of employees, annual sales, and other supporting factors. The secretary of state shall determine whether the applicant is entitled to additional plates.
    As added by P.L.2-1991, SEC.6. Amended by P.L.106-2008, SEC.8.

    IC 9-18-26-5
    Expiration
        
    Sec. 5. Dealer license plates issued to licensed dealers under this chapter expire as follows:
            (1) A person whose business name begins with the letters A through B, inclusive, March 1 of each year.
            (2) A person whose business name begins with the letters C through D, inclusive, April 1 of each year.
            (3) A person whose business name begins with the letters E through G, inclusive, May 1 of each year.
            (4) A person whose business name begins with the letters H through I, inclusive, June 1 of each year.
            (5) A person whose business name begins with the letters J through L, inclusive, July 1 of each year.
            (6) A person whose business name begins with the letters M through O, inclusive, August 1 of each year.
            (7) A person whose business name begins with the letters P through R, inclusive, September 1 of each year.
            (8) A person whose business name begins with the letters S through T, inclusive, October 1 of each year.
            (9) A person whose business name begins with the letters U through Z, inclusive, November 1 of each year.
    Dealer license plates issued to a sole proprietor expire based upon the name of the sole proprietorship.
    As added by P.L.2-1991, SEC.6. Amended by P.L.95-1997, SEC.2.

    IC 9-18-26-6
    Use restrictions
        
    Sec. 6. Except as provided in sections 7 and 8 of this chapter, dealer-new, dealer-used, and manufacturer license plates may only be used on motor vehicles in the:         (1) dealer's inventory being held for sale;
            (2) usual operation of that manufacturer's or dealer's business;
            (3) movement of that manufacturer's or dealer's inventory; or
            (4) inventory of a manufacturer or dealer that is unattended by that manufacturer or dealer or the dealer's agent for a maximum of ten (10) days by a prospective buyer or a service customer.
    As added by P.L.2-1991, SEC.6.

    IC 9-18-26-7
    Unrestricted use under tax avoidance rules
        
    Sec. 7. Dealer-new, dealer-used, and manufacturer license plates may be used without restriction by a manufacturer, a dealer, or an employee of a manufacturer or a dealer under rules adopted by the secretary of state to prohibit use of the plates solely to avoid payment of applicable taxes.
    As added by P.L.2-1991, SEC.6. Amended by P.L.106-2008, SEC.9.

    IC 9-18-26-8
    Unrestricted use; rules
        
    Sec. 8. Dealer-new, dealer-used, and manufacturer license plates may be used without restriction by a designee of a dealer or a designee of a manufacturer under rules adopted by the secretary of state. The rules must provide the following:
            (1) The dealer or manufacturer is to be assessed and pay the motor vehicle excise tax under IC 6-6-5 attributable to that part of the total year that the designee operates the motor vehicle.
            (2) The dealer or manufacturer shall report to the secretary of state the date of assignment to a designee, the designee's name and address, and the date of termination of the assignment within ten (10) days of the assignment or termination.
            (3) The tax calculated in subdivision (1) shall be paid within thirty (30) days of the termination of the assignment to the designee or at the time the dealer or manufacturer purchases license plates under this chapter.
    As added by P.L.2-1991, SEC.6. Amended by P.L.93-2010, SEC.5.

    IC 9-18-26-9
    Use prohibited on leased vehicles
        
    Sec. 9. Dealer-new, dealer-used, and manufacturer license plates may not be used on a vehicle that:
            (1) is required to be registered; and
            (2) has a fee charged by dealers to others for the use of the vehicle.
    As added by P.L.2-1991, SEC.6.

    IC 9-18-26-10
    Interim plates
        
    Sec. 10. (a) The secretary of state may issue an interim license plate to a dealer or manufacturer who is licensed and has been issued a license plate under section 1 of this chapter.     (b) The secretary of state shall prescribe the form of an interim license plate issued under this section. However, a plate must bear the assigned registration number and provide sufficient space for the expiration date as provided in subsection (c).
        (c) Whenever a dealer or manufacturer sells a motor vehicle, the dealer or manufacturer may provide the buyer with an interim license plate. The dealer shall, in the manner provided by the secretary of state, affix on the plate in numerals and letters at least three (3) inches high the date on which the interim license plate expires.
        (d) An interim license plate authorizes a motor vehicle owner to operate the vehicle for a maximum period of thirty-one (31) days after the date of delivery of the vehicle to the vehicle's owner or until a regular license plate is issued, whichever occurs first.
        (e) A motor vehicle that is required by law to display license plates on the front and rear of the vehicle is only required to display a single interim plate.
    As added by P.L.2-1991, SEC.6. Amended by P.L.68-1992, SEC.1; P.L.106-2008, SEC.10.

    IC 9-18-26-11
    Violations; misdemeanor
        
    Sec. 11. Except as provided in sections 12 and 13 of this chapter, a person who violates this chapter commits a Class B misdemeanor.
    As added by P.L.1-1992, SEC.37.

    IC 9-18-26-12

    Violation of rule; infraction
        
    Sec. 12. A person who knowingly violates a rule adopted by the secretary of state regarding the classification and use of a dealer plate or the use of a research and development license plate commits a Class A infraction.
    As added by P.L.1-1992, SEC.38. Amended by P.L.106-2008, SEC.11; P.L.93-2010, SEC.6.

    IC 9-18-26-13
    Display of altered license plate; misdemeanor
        
    Sec. 13. A person who operates a vehicle displaying an altered interim license plate issued under section 10 of this chapter commits a Class C misdemeanor.
    As added by P.L.1-1992, SEC.39.

    IC 9-18-26-14
    Civil penalties
        
    Sec. 14. A person who violates this chapter or a rule or order of the secretary of state issued under this chapter is subject to a civil penalty of not less than fifty dollars ($50) and not more than one thousand dollars ($1,000) for each day of violation and for each act of violation, as determined by the court. All civil penalties recovered under this chapter shall be paid to the state.
    As added by P.L.1-1992, SEC.40. Amended by P.L.106-2008,

    SEC.12.

    IC 9-18-26-15
    Additional penalty
        
    Sec. 15. In addition to the civil penalty imposed under section 14 of this chapter, the secretary of state may restrict, suspend, or revoke a dealer permanent or interim license plate that was issued to the violator.
    As added by P.L.1-1992, SEC.41. Amended by P.L.125-1995, SEC.7; P.L.176-2001, SEC.7; P.L.106-2008, SEC.13.

    IC 9-18-26-16
    Injunctions
        
    Sec. 16. Whenever a person violates this chapter or a rule or order of the secretary of state issued under this chapter, the secretary of state may institute a civil action in any circuit or superior court of Indiana for injunctive relief to restrain the person from continuing the activity or for the assessment and recovery of the civil penalty provided in section 14 of this chapter, or both.
    As added by P.L.1-1992, SEC.42. Amended by P.L.106-2008, SEC.14.

    IC 9-18-26-17
    Actions by attorney general
        
    Sec. 17. At the request of the secretary of state, the attorney general shall institute and conduct an action in the name of the state for:
            (1) injunctive relief or to recover the civil penalty provided by section 14 of this chapter;
            (2) the injunctive relief provided by section 16 of this chapter; or
            (3) both.
    As added by P.L.1-1992, SEC.43. Amended by P.L.106-2008, SEC.15.

    IC 9-18-26-18
    Records of interim plate use
        
    Sec. 18. (a) As used in this section, "records" includes, but is not limited to, the following:
            (1) Bills of sale.
            (2) Finance agreements.
            (3) Titles.
            (4) Inventory records.
            (5) Sales receipts from auctions.
            (6) Form ST-108 (department of state revenue certificate of gross retail or use tax paid on the purchase of a motor vehicle or watercraft).
        (b) All records directly related to the use of interim plates by a dealer must be made available to an investigating employee of the secretary of state upon demand at the dealer's place of business. As added by P.L.125-1995, SEC.8. Amended by P.L.106-2008, SEC.16; P.L.179-2009, SEC.1.

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