2018 Colorado Revised Statutes
Title 42 - Vehicles and Traffic
Article 3 - Registration, Taxation, and License Plates
Part 2 - License Plates
§ 42-3-202. Number plates furnished to be attached

  • (1)

    • (a) The owner shall attach the number plates assigned to a self-propelled vehicle, other than a motorcycle or street rod vehicle, to the vehicle with one in the front and the other in the rear. The owner shall attach the number plate assigned to a motorcycle, street rod vehicle, trailer, semitrailer, other vehicle drawn by a motor vehicle, or special mobile machinery to the rear of the vehicle. The owner shall display number plates during the current registration year, except as otherwise provided in this article 3.

    • (b) If the department issues a validating tab or sticker to a motor vehicle pursuant to section 42-3-201, the current month validating tab or sticker shall be displayed in the bottom left corner of the rear license plate. The current year validating tab or sticker shall be displayed in the bottom right corner of the rear license plate. The tabs or stickers shall be visible at all times.

  • (2)

    • (a)

      • (I) The owner or driver of a motor vehicle shall securely fasten the license plate to the vehicle to which it is assigned so as to prevent the plate from swinging.

      • (II) Except when authorized by this article 3 or rule of the department, the rear license plate must be:

        • (A) Horizontal at a height not less than twelve inches from the ground, measuring from the bottom of the plate;

        • (B) In a place and position to be clearly visible;

        • (C) Maintained free from foreign materials and clearly legible;

        • (D) At the approximate center of the vehicle measured horizontally; and

        • (E) Mounted on or within eighteen inches of the rear bumper.

      • (III) Except when authorized by this article 3, the front license plate must be:

        • (A) Displayed horizontally on the front of a motor vehicle in the location designated by the motor vehicle manufacturer;

        • (B) Maintained free from foreign materials; and

        • (C) Clearly legible.

    • (b) A person shall not operate a motor vehicle with an affixed device or a substance that causes all or a portion of a license plate to be unreadable by a system used to automatically identify a motor vehicle. Such a device includes, without limitation, a cover that distorts angular visibility; alters the color of the plate; or is smoked, tinted, scratched, or dirty so as to impair the legibility of the license plate.

  • (3)

    • (a) A person who violates any provision of this section commits a class B traffic infraction.

    • (b) A person who violates paragraph (b) of subsection (2) of this section commits a class A traffic infraction and shall be punished by a fine of one hundred dollars.

  • (4) Notwithstanding subsections (1) to (3) of this section, the owner of a military vehicle may elect to not display the vehicle's assigned license plate if the license plate is physically in the military vehicle and is available for inspection to any peace officer who requests the plate.

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