Is My License Plate Frame Legal in Alabama?

Alabama drivers can use license plate frames only if they do not cover any numbers, letters, or necessary decals.
Written by Kevin Martinez
Reviewed by Jessica Barrett
background
Alabama
drivers can customize their license plates with license plate frames. However, be mindful that all letters, numbers, and decals must be visible to avoid fines.
Anytime you make changes to your vehicle—even if it’s just adding a license plate frame or cover—it is another great way to make your car genuinely feel more true to you. 
That said, be mindful of what you put on your vehicle as many states have strict policies on what types of frames or covers you can legally use. If you fail to follow your state's license plate frame laws, you could be subjected to some pretty hefty fines—and a possible mandatory court appearance.
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Yes! Alabama drivers are permitted to have
license plate
frames. However, make sure that all parts of your license plate are visible, including your
car's registration
sticker.

What are the rules for license plate frames in Alabama?

According to
Section 40-12-265
of the Code of Alabama 1975, any "mutilated or altered license plates are not to be displayed on any motor vehicle."
The terms “mutilated” or “altered” are meant to include any unauthorized decal, sticker, patch, or other impediments that would block license plate numbers or decals.
In other words, if it covers any written material on your license plate, including the "HEART OF DIXIE" and "ALABAMA," it is illegal. So as long as your license plate frame does not obscure or impede any part of your plate, you're good to go.

What about license plate covers?

Having a license plate cover is illegal even if it's a clear plastic covering. Any covering or shield, no matter how it looks, could be classified as an obstruction that could lead to being fined if you drive with one on.
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What are the fines for license plate frames in Alabama?

Alabama drivers with obstructive license plate frames could be subject to a citation up to $200 and possible additional court costs.
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