Why Texas DMV Denied Over 4900 Personalized License Plates In 6 Months
Vanity (or personalized) license plates on vehicles can be fun and whimsical. Some owners get very creative when it comes to the right combination of letters and numbers to get their message across in those precious seven characters or less.
Personalized plates in Texas are big business. From April 2021 to September 2021, the Texas Department of Motor Vehicles approved a little over 41,700 personalized license plates to go on Texas cars and trucks. That's a lot of combinations! During that same time, Texas rejected a little more than 4,900 license plates because they didn't meet the state's criteria, or in some cases, exceeded it.
Through an open records request with the Texas Department of Motor Vehicles, I was able to obtain a list of all the denied personalized plates from Texans requesting them. We'll get to a few of the ones that made us laugh a bit along with some that we thought would be ok, but apparently didn't pass the state's standards for some reason. To see the complete list of denied plates from April, May, June, July, August, or September, just click on a month.
Texans have been personalizing their license plates since 1965. There is a group of four state employees in Austin that review each request and is either approved or denied. After carefully reviewing more than 50,000 requests during this six month period, some requests were denied based upon the following standards:
- it does not conflict with a current or proposed pattern issued by Texas
- is not indecent
- is not vulgar
- is not derogatory
- does not refer to race, ethnicity, gender or sexual orientation, whether the reference is derogatory or not
- does not contain illegal activity message
- does not make a drug reference - substances, state of mind, glorification
- does not make reference to gangs
Now if you think you have a clever combination to fit on a personalized plate, you can jump on over to My Plates and test out your combination and see if it's available. And while you're checking out all the denied plates, all the plate images you see can be personalized, along with hundreds more, on the My Plates site.
So the next time you're behind the wheel just look around and you'll begin to notice there are a ton of these vanity plates driving around. It's always fun to try to decipher all of them because they are not a