Is My License Plate Frame Legal in Texas?

In Texas, violating the state’s license plate frame law is classified as a misdemeanor, and can be punishable by fines of up to $200.
Written by Jason Tushinski
Reviewed by Jessica Barrett
In
Texas
, it is illegal to obscure or impair the readability of a license plate’s number, letters, or decals (including “State of Texas” and “Lone Star State”). That means any cover that obscures
license plate
information is banned as well.
Violating Texas’ license plate frame law is a misdemeanor and can bring fines of up to $200. If you are found to have knowingly obstructed your plate’s information, the violation will be upgraded to a Class B misdemeanor, which can be punishable by a fine of up to $2,000, up to 180 days in jail, or both.
For many drivers, using a license plate frame is a great way to express themselves, whether showing off your humor with a funny saying, supporting a favorite business, or making sure everyone knows you are a diehard Dallas Stars fan.
But the saying Don’t Mess With Texas certainly rings true when it comes to the state’s license plate frame law—running afoul of it means being cited for a misdemeanor, which can bring with it a hefty fine.
To ensure you do not mess with the State of Texas, the
car insurance
broker and comparison shopping app
Jerry
has put together this handy article with all the information you’ll need to stay on the right side of the Lone Star State’s license plate frame law.
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Yes, license plate frames are legal in Texas. However, the state is clear about what you need to do in order to stay in compliance with Texas’ license plate frame law.
You will have committed an offense if you display or attach a plate to a vehicle where:
  • One-half of state name where the vehicle is registered is altered or obscured
  • Any numbers, letters, or decals are not clearly visible on the plate
If you are cited for violating Texas’ license plate frame law, the court can dismiss this violation if you fix the defect before your first court appearance and pay a reimbursement fee not exceeding $10.

What about license plate covers?

License plate covers are prohibited in Texas. 
You’re committing an offense in Texas by doing the following:
  • There is a blurring or reflective cover that impairs the readability of the state name
    where the vehicle is registered
    , or the numbers or letters on the plate
  • There is a protective coating or substance distorting the plate’s angular visibility or plate detectability
  • There are any stickers, emblems, or insignias not authorized by the State of Texas that impair your plate’s readability

What are the fines for license plate frames in Texas?

If you are found to violate Texas’ license plate frame law, you can face fines of up to $200 and be cited for a misdemeanor. If you are found to have knowingly concealed any part of your license plate with a frame or covering, you may be cited for a Class B misdemeanor and face fines of up to $2,000 and/or 180 days in jail.

How to find cheap car insurance in Texas

If you’re looking to protect your vehicle in Texas and ensure you meet the state’s minimum liability requirements, then you’ve come to the right place!
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