How can I replace a damaged compliance plate?
Asked by Campbell
Answered by CarsGuide4 Nov 2020
Given that it’s just a small piece of stamped aluminium, a car’s compliance plate is a big deal as it confirms that the vehicle to which it’s attached meets all relevant rules and regulations to be used on the street. The laws vary from State to State, but in WA right now, it seems that replacing a damaged compliance plate with a new one is not permitted. Instead, what you may have to do is to apply for an exemption to have a compliance plate fitted to that particular vehicle.
According to the WA authorities (who I contacted about this) “If a vehicle’s original compliance plate is destroyed or lost, it cannot be replaced, however the vehicle owner can apply…for an exemption from having to fit a compliance plate”. There’s a process to be followed including having the car inspected and, if the vehicle is deemed to qualify for the exemption, a note will be made on its registration record to reflect the fact that it doesn’t require a physical compliance plate. This inspection will confirm that the vehicle is legal and hasn’t been stolen or written-off.
My concern is that it’s something you’re going to have to explain to a buyer when you sell the car on. Even though a car with this exemption is perfectly legal and shouldn’t present any insurance hassles, some buyers might be leery of a car without a compliance plate. For that reason, I’d be doing everything I could to preserve the original compliance plate. Unless there was a fire that melted it, even a bent and buckled compliance plate may be able to be straightened and left attached to the car. That would certainly be my preference.
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