2012 South Carolina Code of Laws
Title 56 - Motor Vehicles
Section 56-3-2320 - Dealer and wholesaler license plates; restrictions on use.

SC Code § 56-3-2320 (2012) What's This?

(A) Upon application being made and the required fee being paid to the Department of Motor Vehicles, the department may issue dealer license plates to a licensed motor vehicle dealer. The license plates, notwithstanding other provisions of this chapter to the contrary, may be used exclusively on motor vehicles owned by, assigned, or loaned for test driving purposes to the dealer when operated on the highways of this State by the dealer, its corporate officers, its employees, or a prospective purchaser of the motor vehicle. The use by a prospective purchaser is limited to seven days, and the dealer shall provide the prospective purchaser with a dated demonstration certificate. The certificate must be approved by the department. Dealer plates must not be used to operate wreckers or service vehicles in use by the dealer nor to operate vehicles owned by the dealer that are leased or rented by the public. No dealer plates may be issued by the department unless the dealer furnishes proof in a form acceptable to the department that he has a retail business license as required by Chapter 36, Title 12 and has made at least twenty sales of motor vehicles in the twelve months preceding his application for a dealer plate. The sales requirement may be waived by the department if the dealer has been licensed for less than one year. For purposes of this section, the transfer of ownership of a motor vehicle between the same individual or corporation more than one time is considered as only one sale. Multiple transfer of motor vehicles between licensed dealers for the purpose of meeting eligibility requirements for motor vehicle dealer plates is prohibited.

A dealer may be issued two plates for the first twenty vehicles sold during the preceding year and one additional plate for each fifteen vehicles sold beyond the initial twenty during the preceding year. For good cause shown, the department in its discretion may issue extra plates. If the dealer has been licensed less than one year, the department shall issue a number of license plates based on an estimated number of sales for the coming year. The department may increase or decrease the number of plates issued based on actual sales made.

The cost of each dealer plate issued is twenty dollars.

Upon application to the department, a public or private school, college, or university, the United Service Organization South Carolina, the American Red Cross, or an economic development entity created or sanctioned by the county where the entity is located, may be issued a license plate to be used on vehicles loaned or rented to the school, college, university, the United Service Organization South Carolina, the American Red Cross, or economic development entity by a licensed motor vehicle dealer. The plate must be a personalized plate designed by the department. The cost of each plate issued is two hundred dollars, of which one hundred sixty dollars must be remitted by the department to the county in which the school, college, university, chapter of the United Service Organization South Carolina, chapter of the American Red Cross, or economic development entity is located. Each plate is valid for two years, and there is no limit on the number of plates which may be issued, except in the case of an economic development entity where only one plate per entity is allowed.

A dealer license plate is allowed on a motor vehicle which the dealer lends to a public or private school for use in a driver education program. A plate used for this purpose may be obtained without fee and without regard to the limit on plates issued pursuant to this section. When the motor vehicle is no longer used for driver education, the dealer shall surrender the plate to the department.

Notwithstanding the provisions of this section, a dealer exclusively selling heavy duty trucks at retail is eligible to obtain license plates for exclusive use on the heavy duty trucks regardless of the number of trucks sold by him during the preceding required number of months. These license plates for trucks must be noted with a distinct and separate identification and used only on heavy duty trucks. For purposes of this section, heavy duty trucks include trucks having a gross vehicle weight of sixteen thousand pounds or greater.

(B) For purposes of this section, the testing or demonstration of a heavy duty truck with a GVW of 16,000 pounds or over as defined in Section 56-3-20(10) includes permitting a prospective buyer to use the truck for carrying merchandise or cargo for not more than three days upon the dealer providing the buyer with a special demonstration certificate for this purpose. The form and content of the demonstration certificate must be as prescribed by the department which also shall provide certificates to dealers upon their request. The original certificate must be kept by the buyer in the cab of the truck during the three-day demonstration period, and the dealer shall retain a copy of the certificate and mail a copy of the certificate to the department within twenty-four hours after it is issued to the buyer.

HISTORY: 1962 Code Section 46-93; 1952 Code Section 46-93; 1949 (46) 342; 1959 (51) 419; 1980 Act No. 396; 1983 Act No. 118 Section 3; 1991 Act No. 91, Section 1992 Act No. 498, Section 2; 1993 Act No. 181, Section 1388; 1993 Act No. 164, Part II, Section 105B; 1994 Act No. 423, Section 4; 1994 Act No. 497, Part II, Section 37A; 1994 Act No. 497, Part II, Section 121J; 1996 Act No. 459, Sections 1, 165; 2012 Act No. 253, Section 2, eff June 18, 2012.

Disclaimer: These codes may not be the most recent version. South Carolina may have more current or accurate information. We make no warranties or guarantees about the accuracy, completeness, or adequacy of the information contained on this site or the information linked to on the state site. Please check official sources.