Can I Have a Personalised Number Plate on a Leased Vehicle?

The simple answer is, ‘Yes’, you can but there are some steps to go through first.

The most obvious issue is that while you will love your new leased car, it does not belong to you.

That means you will need permission to add the plate from the car leasing or finance company because they will remain as the registered keeper of the car. Without the logbook - the V5C - you cannot swap the registration number that has been given to your car for a private number plate.

However, this is a straightforward process and once the leasing company agrees that you can change the registration, you’ll need to start filling in forms.

You should be aware that most car lease firms will not be able to add your cherished number plate before delivery because the registration process will slow down delivery.

If yours is a new number plate, that’s one that hasn’t been registered or used before on another car, then there’s just the form V750 to complete.

Transferring a number plate that has been registered previously

If you are transferring a number plate that has been registered previously, you’ll need to complete form V778, so the car’s new plate is put on a retention list. Here’s a rundown on the forms you might need:

  • V750: Whenever you buy private number plates, you will be sent a V750 form, also known as the Certificate of Entitlement. This document will prove that you have purchased the registration number. This form should always be kept in a safe place.
  • V317: This is the form to use when transferring your private number plate from your current vehicle to your new car. Since you are using your car, this form is used to put the registration number it came with onto the retention list - without doing so, it’s unlikely that the transfer will take place. The retention process means you cannot add your new plate until this is complete.
  • V778: This is the retention form and will be sent by the DVLA so that the registration on your current car can be removed but not used for another car straight afterwards. The document is used when a private plate is being added to a car, but the original registration is retained so it can be put back on in future.

When completing either of these forms, you need to change the Nominee that is listed and add your details.

This will give permission for another company or person to use the DVLA registration – this form can be completed by post or online.

You may find that the car leasing company may ask for a small admin fee for them to process the paperwork.

Once the fee has been paid, the car leasing company will send the documents to the DVLA for the process to be completed.

Soon, the DVLA will assign your new registration to your leased car and return the paperwork.

Be aware though that until this paperwork from DVLA is received by you, you cannot add your private plates to your car.

If you do so, and no doubt you will be eager to add your cherished number plate as soon as possible, you could be fined because the DVLA has not yet given permission and your car will not be correctly registered.

What happens when my car lease ends?

Before your leased car is returned to the car leasing company, you need to remove your private number plates. The leasing company will not accept the vehicle with them still on it.

That means you will need to de-register your private plate from the car you are leasing.

This also means being prepared around six weeks before the lease finishes, and you will also need to contact the car leasing company.

That's when they will send a V317 form to the DVLA and your vehicle’s logbook - which has been retained by them.

There is currently a fee to transfer the number plate and it is likely the car leasing company will also impose an admin charge for swapping a plate.

Once this process has been completed, the DVLA will return the logbook with the vehicle's original registration number to the car leasing company.

The retention document, the V778, will then be sent to you.

You will need this if you want to add your registration to another vehicle at some point in the future.

And the reason why you need to contact your car leasing company six weeks before your leasing term ends, is that this is how long the process will take to complete.

Can I have a personalised number plate on a leased vehicle?

And that’s it. It does sound like a complicated process, but it is relatively straight forward, and the steps are easy to understand.

But if you want to add a cherished number plate to your leased vehicle, then the process is worthwhile!