Illinois Specialty Plates

Illinois Specialty plates

After purchasing an automobile you have two steps to do; first, register, and second, get a license plate. Here you can have a regular one or a special, which can be a personalized tag where you create your own. Or it can be for colleges, organizations, or antique cars.

In this article, you’ll know about the last ones as all of them have different prices and requirements. But the applying methods are the same for all of them. There are 3 ways to do it: in-person, online, and by mail. For this, you need to provide docs and info like the current number plate or VIN. Also, pay the fees for the application.

All this process in this state is regulated by the SOS (State Secretary of Illinois).

Illinois Specialty plates

After buying a car the next step is to register it and obtain your license. Here you have two options: either have a regular type or create your own design and message.

The board offers a huge specialty tag assortment which includes unique designs (vanity and personalized). Also, there are three different ways to submit an application for it. You can mail it, use the website (online), and also in person.

Continue reading and you will find all the information about this process.

Applying process for Vanity and Personalized plates in Illinois

The State Secretary of IL (SOS) provides tags for motorcycles, RVs (recreational vehicles), trucks, and automobiles.

You have an opportunity to choose between two options. You can either have a registration mark on the regular form or have it on different types for special.

Each of these types has its requirements and guide to apply. For example, in the personalized first, come the letters then the digits. But the vanity must have a maximum of 3 digits or 1-7 letters.

However, there are rules for both forms. So, it cannot include offensive language, foreign words, symbols, lowercase letters, spaces, and intermingled letters and digits.

Payments’ amount and details about applications, you will find below in this article.

Individualized and Vanity Plates Fee

Remember that this and registration payments are separate. So, this means you first pay the second and after that, you only are able to request a tag and pay the rates for it.

They will be changed according to the type of your car and license plate.

  • The charges for a customized:
    B-truck, RV, or passenger automobile – $158
    Motorcycle – $48
  • The charges for vanity:
    B-truck, RV, or passenger automobile – $164.
    Motorcycle – $48

There are extras like the title. It is for the machines that get registered and titled in Illinois for the very first time. Also, there are several costs for the special types.

Numbers with Unique Designs

The State Secretary of IL offers a lot of different individual styles. This includes universities, colleges, organizations, and vintage cars.


The majority of the special marks here are membership institutions, sporting teams, and charity organizations.

Here are some examples of the companies with this: Police Order of Fraternal in IL, Prevent Violence, The Chicago Cubs, and so on.

Payments for Organization

Keep in mind that all the following are added to the renewal and registration and costs for the customized one.

Part of the fees returns to your company itself. Here are examples of organizational registration marks.

  • Chicago Bears:
    The order is $40.
    Renewing is $27.
  • Police Order of Fraternal in IL:
    The order is $25.
    Renewing is $25.
  • Prevent Violence:
    The order is $40.
    Renewing is $27.

Plates for colleges in IL

The part of this is also for the colleges (not only in the state but also outside of it).

These are the examples of the colleges that have this: Notre Dame University, Illinois University, University of Loyola, and so on.


As usual here also all the payments are added to the standard renewal and registration costs. A percentage of the charge for this goes to the sponsoring college to finance scholarships.

Remember, if you want to obtain a personalized one, you also need to pay for that.

The typical process of such tags:

  • University of Illinois State:
    Submitting is $40.
    Renewal is $27.
  • Notre Dame University:
    Submitting is $40.
    Renewal is $27.

Plates for Antique Car

For vintage automobiles, a specialty tag is offered for the following:

  • Cars that are older than 25 years.
  • Vehicles used by firefighters that are older than 20 years.
  • The exact duplicates of what you have seen above.

For qualification, the vehicle has to have its original state. However, you are allowed to drive them only in parades, shows, and other similar activities. Also, you are allowed to take it to the service and drive back.

This has a cycle and it lasts 5 years. So, you can receive it every 5 years.


Every five years you pay $30, but you will be charged the pro-rated price if you want to get it out of this cycle.

In addition, there are extras like a replacement one which is $29 (that you pay when you want to replace the non-antique with an antique). And, as usual, the personalized one if you want it.

Specialty registration number application process

There are 3 ways to apply for this: in-person, online, and by mail.


Remember that you can’t get one with an eligibility condition online. Others like vanity, special, or personalized you can easily get online and for that just visit the website.

However, there are some criteria that you must follow to be able to apply online. And here they are.

  • The car is registered at your current address
    Note: If it is not, be sure to change it before submitting.
  • The registered owner of the vehicle is you.
  • The message you want doesn’t have eligibility conditions.

Additionally, you need to provide this:

  • Your current number
  • VIN (vehicle ident. number)
  • State’s driver’s license
  • Last four characters of your SSN
  • American Express, Discover, MasterCard, or Visa card expiration date and number for fees

In-Person or By mail

The other two options are in-person in any Facility Services for drivers or in an application form sent by mail.

Here are the steps you need to do to order it:

  • Choose one of these special marks: Antique, Collegiate, and Organizational.
  • Find and download the application.
  • If you need requirements of eligibility check and include the proof of it.
  • Find and pay the fees.
  • Submit the application in person or by mail.