October 1, 2007

All Official Inspection Stations

From: Virginia C. Beecher, Director Division of Motor Vehicles

Re: Official Cover Plates

It has been brought to the attention of the Division of Motor Vehicles that a number of Official Inspection Stations are asking Members of the New Hampshire General Court, House of Representatives to remove their legislative plates when conducting an inspection.

Saf-C 3210.03 does require mechanics to inspect registration plates which are to be securely mounted on the exterior of the vehicle in locations provided for by the manufacturer. However, the administrative rule does go on to mention, vehicles which display special number plates pursuant to RSA 261:91 shall be inspected even though the registration certificate reflects a different number.

Please know that RSA 261:90 also provides for the issuance of legislative plates known as Official Cover Plates. Official Cover Plates may be attached only to vehicles registered in the name of the person issued the plates or the name of the spouse of a member of the General Court.

Therefore, for the purpose of conducting an official safety inspection it is expected that a properly/currently registered vehicle as verified by the corresponding certificate of registration in the name of the member of the New Hampshire General Court or name of their spouse may be inspected while an Official Cover Plate is mounted on the exterior of the vehicle in locations provided for by the manufacturer.

An inspecting mechanic should however ensure the certificate of registration corresponds with the registration number plates which may be located beneath the Official Cover Plates or readily accessible within the subject vehicle.

If you have any questions, please contact the DMV at 603-271-4120.