Wednesday, January 13, 2010

Illinois License Plate Renewal Fee

If you are a driver in Illinois, chances are you are familiar with the annual fee we have to pay to the state to renew our license plates. You know the one where you have send them $100 and in return they give you a little sticker to put on your license plate? I have never understood why this fee is so high. According to my recent statement, this year's renewal fee's have increased by $20, so the total is $99.

What I want to know is why we are paying so much for this? I remember emailing them last year around this time asking what the fee is for. Basically they gave me a generic answer just saying that is goes towards the cost of processing the information and what not. Really? It costs $100 to put my information in a computer and send me a sticker? I have a feeling someone at the top is making a lot of money off of all of this.

And what can we do? Not pay it? Then your license will expire and you will get fined for having an outdated license plate. There must be some way to stop these outrageous fees. I would like specific examples of exactly how this money is being used if they are taking it from us each year. Someone has to be accountable.

Not to mention they charge a convenience fee of $2.25 if you want to pay it by credit card instead of mailing it in. Funny how it is more convenient for them, yet they act as if they are accommodating us by allowing us to pay by credit card. Ok, so they say it is because they have to pay a fee if they accept credit card payments. Still it seems a bit high just to pay by credit card. 

Anyway, I'm just tired of paying fees that are unreasonable and/or unexplained. Hopefully some people out there will read this. Maybe we can make a change.

2014 Update:
The cost keeps going up.  It is now $101.  On the back of the card they send you, it says that the increased cost is going towards state parks.  Ok, but what does that have to do with license plates and motor vehicles?

Update: 4-6-14
A few months ago my dad sold a car and discarded the old license plates.  Apparently someone got their hands on the plates and put them on another car illegally.  Then a few weeks ago he gets sent a ticket because these plates were on someone's car and they were expired.  Now if we are paying over $100 a year to keep this information current and accurate in the system, why was there no record that the car had been sold months prior and that the plates were no longer valid.  They should have been able to see in the system that the plates were old and did not even match the car they were on.

So my dad has had to go to all these different departments and fill out a bunch of paperwork in order not to have to pay this fine that should never have even been put into place.  If the license plate system was keeping up to date as it should with this huge amount of money we are all paying every year into the system, this kind of thing should not happen.  Something just does not add up here. 

Update 3-7-15  A few months back I sold a car and made sure to follow all the instructions for selling a vehicle and transferring the title.  I made sure the new owner got new plates for the car.  Then just recently I have been getting emails to renew my license plates even though I sold the car months ago.  There is not even an option to reply explaining that the car has been sold.  I sent them an email asking about this and they said it is automatic so I should just ignore it.  Ok that is fine, but still it seems like if we are paying the fees each year for these plates, this system should be a lot more up to date with keeping track of the records.


  1. It's bs! I'm emailing new 2 in st Louis about it and mabe they'll check it out.
    If you look up the pop for Illinois it's 12,419,292! Ok soo everyone does not own a car but some people own more then 1. Say 10,000,000 cars at 100 bucks a year? 1 billion dollars a year JUST for the sicker! Hmm sounds fishy

  2. I will never understand why on tip of taxes and all these fees we pay this and other states are in debt. Apparently the money its not being used for its intended use which its all this made up sections they describe to keep us from wanting to know the truth. Its obvious even paying $10 a year is still more than what the stickers are worth, and I'm sure the state police gets plenty of money from motorists trying to go to work daily only to pay other fees they throw at us because taking care of our own families is their least concern. When people started losing their jobs, they should of been losing their outrageous fees. This country was once run by the people. Now its run by law sections so nobody in office no longer have to take any responsibility for their actions. Its easier to blame a section of a law. Wake up America and take back our Country.

  3. Some one said the solution to Government's Problems is very simple; "Quit hiring (electing) Lawyers" to run it.

  4. I just got my License Plate Renewal Fee Bill today on the mail. When they send us this bill they are willing to pay the First Class Mail, yet can't pay for the credit card 2.25. I am tiered of paying for City Sticker, License Plate sticker, Parking meter, and such a High Insurance . Why the HEll Do we need to Renew it ? one time $100 is enough why every year ? The City sticker for what ? Most states don't even have that, Why Illinois ? What is it for ? for parking in the city ? then why am i paying 1.25 to park on the street. Another corrupted system they have is tax on the pay check ? if i am already being taxed on the money i make, why do i get double taxed when i purchase something ? We need to do something!

    1. I just renewed my plates again and I'm still pissed about the fee. I did some research and there are a lot of other states that have these fees and some are more than Illinois. From what I can tell the money is basically just another tax to go towards... well I still don't know exactly. Their website does not mention anything about it. I agree that there are too many different taxes. The whole tax system is a mess. It needs to be reformed.

  5. question. so my plate sticker expired this month in august. i didnt get it until 9/3 because i thought i had until 9/30 to get it without paying a late fee. i got a ticket for $60 for the expired plate sticker. do i have to pay it or can i use the above info to contest it?

  6. You can try but my guess is that if the ticket was written for an expired plate in August, it will be hard to contest it even though you now have the new one. I actually got pulled over for this same issue once but was lucky enough to get by with just a warning.

  7. We bought a new car in 2014 and the renewal on the new car no longer gives me the option of paying by mail and avoiding the 'convenience' fee. Ridiculous!

  8. I am very interested in learning where all this money to the state is going. I have no idea why we are paying $100 for a sticker. That is absolutely absurd and obviously revenue generation by the state. How can we get a copy of the breakdown of where that money is spent? I can't find it anywhere! ... No transparency equals corruption. What is it that the cops tell us? ..."If you have nothing to hide, then you won't mind us taking a look".. Well I feel the same way about the license plate fees and I want an answer. Where can I get that information?