Private number plates are something that more people are purchasing, particularly for their leased vehicles. However, can you change the number plate on a leased car when the car isn’t technically yours?

We’ve written this article that we hope will answer any of your questions.

How to register a private plate to your car

You can put a private plate on a lease car, however, because the car isn’t owned by you, there are a few steps that you need to take before you can have your number plate installed.

First, you’ll need to get permission from the finance company who leased the car to you, as they are the registered keeper of the vehicle. Once they’ve agreed that you can change the number plates on the car, you will need to arrange to send them some important documents.

If you’ve bought new number plates that haven’t been used before or registered to any other car, you should fill out your V750. If your number plate has previously been registered to another car, you’ll need to fill out either a V317 or a V778 if your plate is on retention. We’ve outlined what these documents are and what they mean in the section below.

The car belongs to the finance provider so you’ll need to fill in the V750 or V778 and add/change the Nominee on the form to this company. This means that another person/company is entitled to use the DVLA registration. This can be done online or by post.

Your finance provider may require an administration fee to process your paperwork. This is usually between £25 and £100. Once this has been paid, your finance provider will send your documents over to the DVLA for them to process the paperwork.

Once the DVLA have assigned the new registration number to your vehicle, they will send your paperwork back to you. It is only at this point that you can fit your new number plates. If you fit them before the DVLA has written back with confirmation, you could receive a fine.

What is a V750 form?

When you buy new private number plates, you’ll receive a V750 form. This is a document that shows that the registration number you’ve purchased has never been displayed on a vehicle before. You should keep this document safe.

What is a V317 form?

A V317 form should be filled in when you want to transfer your vehicle registration from one car to another, with a lease vehicle you would need to use this form to put the plate onto retention as they won’t normally do a transfer. Retention means that you still own the registration number, but you don’t want to attach it to a new vehicle straight away.

What is a V778 form?

You’ll receive a V778 form, otherwise known as a retention form, when you contact the DVLA to remove your number plates from your current vehicle without putting them on another vehicle straight away. A V778 document is used by the DVLA when a private number plate has been removed from a vehicle.

How to remove a private plate from a car

At the end of most lease periods you are required to give the car back, however it is likely that you want to keep your private number plates for future use. Even if you don’t want the plate back it’s likely that the finance company will not collect your vehicle until the plate is removed. You will need to de-register them from your leased car, so there are a few steps that you need to follow.

Six weeks before your lease is due to finish, you should contact your finance provider. They will organise to have your V317 form sent to the DVLA in the post as well as the vehicle’s logbook, which is kept by the finance provider. You should also include an £80 transfer fee to the DVLA. At this point there could be a charge from the finance company to remove the plate.

Once all the documentation has been processed, the DVLA will send the finance provider a new log book showing the vehicle’s original registration number as well as a V778 retention document which should be issued back to you. If you want to reissue your plates to another car in the future, you can use the V778 document to do so.

If you have decided to purchase your vehicle at the end of its lease, there’s no need to change the plates as the vehicle will belong to you and the DVLA will have already been notified which plates you have on your car. Just make sure that the finance provider hands over the vehicle’s logbook to you.

You should allow up to six weeks for the whole process to complete.