Transferring Private Plate Along With Sale Of Car? Is It Possible?


Registered User
Firstly, I'm now convinced that DVLA is the most useless organisation in Britain, and it's probably about time it got privatised. Tried to ring them with a private number plate enquiry 4 or 5 times today, at different intervals (all outside of peak hours) and kept getting the automated message saying all operators are busy and to ring later - no option to be put in a queue or anything, the call just drops.

Anyways, sorry about the rant. Someone is coming to buy my car later on
today, and I've agreed to include the private plate within the agreed price so will have to transfer them over to him along with the car. Is there a straightforward way of doing that, or will I have to fill out like 5 forms and wait for DVLA to process them, thereby having to make the buyer wait as well?

I came across loads existing threads online but they're mostly about either transferring the number plate onto another car, or retaining ownership of it.

Would appreciate some advice on this :)


Well-Known Member
VCDS Map User
AFAIK when you put a plate onto a vehicle it then belongs to that vehicle until the current owner/keeper request it taking off, therefore just let it go.


Registered User
Your all correct, I've just done two transfers, posted everything off the other Thursday afternoon, everything back the following Friday morning, thought that was quit good for the DVLA
One hiccup, they haven't sent one MOT back, phoned up to be told it could be four weeks, wtf

too hot

Registered User
So you are selling your car, is the plate on the car and registered in your name ?
If so all you have to complete is the registration document and have the new owner complete his details and sign the document.
You give him the small section on page 3 and then you send the document off.
The onus is on you to complete the reg document and send it off.
If the plate is on retention you have to complete the NOMINEE section in the retention certificate and give it to the new owner ( the nominee)
It is then up to him to put the plate on the car at a time that suits him(no longer your problem )
Hope this helps


Well-Known Member
VCDS Map User
just sell the car and forget about it

its his reg then


Registered User
Hi guys, thanks for all the replies! I did read them all last night but didn't get a chance to respond as I was rushing. Yup, car sold and all sorted with the plate. Surprisingly, it's very straightforward like you all said. Thanks again!


single and skint? how? oh cars!!!
Firstly the reg will go with the car there's no need to worry about it.

But just for yours and everyone else's info really:

You never own a number plate in the UK the DVLA own it at all times! for example if you dont keep up your retention docs you would lose the reg, if you were to make a claim on your insurance (theft, accident, fire etc etc) and you didn't apply to the DVLA to keep the reg you would lose it.

personally if your ever thinking about selling a car and want to keep your reg transfer it prior to sale or put it on retention. I personally have a friend that sold a car with his cherished reg on it and they guy who was buying the car seemed very genuine, they filled in all the correct forms (they actually went to the DVLA office in truro to do it with an advisor) my friend never received a retention doc for his reg. he called the DVLA many times with no success, he also went in and spoke to the same person in the DVLA office and all they said was 'sorry i cant help you, they now own the reg and to get it back you need them to sign the paperwork'

I dont trust people unless i know them, and i don't trust anything to do with the DVLA, the government, Police, VOSA, and many more organisations :)