You may be in for a big money ticket for your Maine license plate, and not even realize it.

A viewer asked WGME13 TV about getting pulled over and handed a hefty fine. The viewer wrote,

Recently, I got pulled over and the officer told me I had an illegal license plate frame. He said it's a $150 fine because the frame cannot cover any part of the plate that says Maine or the registration stickers. Is this true? If it is, a lot of Mainers are breaking the law.

Lori Voornas

WGME13's I-Team found out that yes, it's true. Under Maine law, everything on your license plate – including all the numbers, letters, and words – need to be "plainly visible and legible." The license above has a plate frame that obstructs part of both registration stickers, and the driver could be handed a $150 ticket! It does happen, too. According to WGME13, Maine’s Traffic Violations Bureau recorded over 30 tickets for illegible plates.


Why am I just learning this about frames around Maine license plates?

No policy specifically addresses frames and covers, but the Bureau of Motor Vehicles says to avoid them on the grounds of "public safety". That's why we are getting the Chickadee license plate replaced. Because they are older plates, some of the lettering is fading or off completely. The purpose of a license plate is to to identify the vehicle, and law enforcement needs that.

Pardon the spicy license plate.

This is a definite violation of the obstruction due to the frame (not to mention how they got away with the message).

Vanity of Maine Instagram
Vanity of Maine Instagram

Do you have a frame that could cost you a $150 ticket?

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