The Court of Cassation confirmed the illegality of the stickers which allow the department to be changed on a license plate. By installing such a sticker, the vehicle owner is liable to a fine of 135 euros. The case had been brought to justice by a manufacturer of plates, commercially injured by designers of stickers.
In 2009, France has adopted its latest license plate system. A system that uses three sets of characters (two letters, three digits and two letters) in replacement of the system with geographic code (one to four digits, one to three letters and the two digits of the department). As of 2009, a license plate no longer identified a vehicle with an owner, but a vehicle for its entire life.
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This means that the new owner of a car, motorcycle or utility no longer has the obligation to change the license plate when purchasingunless this plate was based on the old system (or if it is damaged). Certainly, if the vehicle comes from another department, the plate will not reflect its new region. Changing the plate to adopt the correct department is at the owner’s discretion. Considering the cost that this represents, some drivers do not care about this small aesthetic detail. The price of a plate change is around fifty euros on average.
Plate sticker: economical, but illegal
Drivers no longer need to change plate when changing their vehicle registration document. And this had a considerable impact on approved plate installers who saw the number of interventions drop drastically. And to meet the needs of those who want to display their department without spending so much, some opportunists have created very practical and very economical stickers. Just stick it on the end of the two plates to visually change the department. Price of a pair of stickers: About 10 euros.
The plate manufacturers considered these stickers to be unfair competition. They took their case to justice, calling the stickers non-compliant with French law. And the trial went up to the Court of Cassation. Either the highest French court. This one returned this week, giving reason to the approved producers of license plates: the stickers are illegal.
If you have a sticker on your plates, it is therefore advisable to remove it in order to avoid getting a ticket. The price of the fine for “circulation of a motor vehicle with a non-compliant number plate” is 135 euros and that of the increased fine in the event of a repeat offense is 750 euros. Funny detail: the amount is the same if you leave your home without a certificate during curfew hours.