6 steps to easily renew your license plate LEGALLY...

Don't be an asshat, please.

July 31, 2019

The Colts suck. Why don't I just get rid of that thing?


Not sure if you've noticed, but here in Wisconsin, many people have trouble following the simplest of directions.  Case in point, license plate stickers.  Now chances are, you're an upstanding human being that properly places their license plate sticker.  If that's you, awesome!  But you're about to change the way you look at everyone's license plate in this state.  

You see, I've lived in several states.  Indiana, Tennessee, Florida, and even a few years in Illinois, and the state of Wisconsin is BY FAR the worst with the license plates.  Next time you're out driving around, on the road or looking for a place to park in a parking lot, just glance at the license plates.  How many of them look like this:

Why. Just, WHY???

It's maddening.  Such a simple task, and these people can't even get it right.  You know - its also illegal.  It makes it harder for the police to read your license plate, and state law prohibits you from obstructing the lettering on your license plate.  YES - even those dealer plate frames that cover up the bottom aren't an excuse.  Those are also illegal.  These are not suggestions, these are laws.  

I thought I'd give out six quick tips for renewing your plates, if you're still scratching your head wondering what I'm talking about...while you probably don't deserve to be on the roads operating heavy machinery, let's see if we can get you through this.  


1.  Remove the envelope containing your renewal sticker and registration and find a clear open space behind your vehicle.  Shading is good, since you may be there for a few minutes...and if you are a recovering asshat, this could take anywhere from 10-25 minutes.  

Ok. Let's do this.

2.  Locate your license plate. This is found on the REAR of your car.  Plate renewal stickers are only required on your BACK license plate.  There are two stickers...one for the MONTH and one for the YEAR.  

The Colts suck. Why don't I just get rid of that thing?

3.  On the back of the green envelope containing your new sticker is a diagram.  Locate that diagram. It’s crucial. This will help you visually see where and how the renewal stickers are to be placed.  There are different sticker requirements for larger vehicles, but again - this diagram is SUPER helpful and tells you EXACTLY where to put your new sticker.  

4.  Read the diagram. Twice if you need.  Many people still put their stickers in the incorrect place.  Take your time and read the directions CAREFULLY.  

5.  Peel the back of the sticker off.  No need to provide your own tape or adhesive, the sticker the provide is just that - a STICKER with a sticky back.  You can just peel off the backing and you are ready to place your new sticker on the license plate...but make sure you have done step 3, so you are SURE where it goes...there's no turning back.  

You don't need tape or glue, the sticker is ...wait for it...A STICKER.

6.  The most important step: PUT THE NEW STICKER OVER THE OLD STICKER. RIGHT ON TOP OF IT. NOT IN THE MIDDLE IR THE SIDE. JUST KIKE THE DIAGRAM IN STEP 4  In fact, if you’re having a hard time - go back to step 3. And work your way down. 

Look, here's a video just in case you are still scratching your head:  

If you have any trouble along the way, please call the DMV to surrender your license.  If you can’t follow simple directions, you don’t deserve to partake in the privilege of driving.  Sorry, not sorry.  Nobody is going to STEAL your license plate sticker.  Does it happen?  Sure.  But you know what?  You can call the DMV - explain to them what happened, and they will send you a replacement.  Isn't that grand!??  

"But Riggs, the license plate bandits use a metal pair of scissors to cut the corner of the plate off my car!"  - Look, I'm glad you think that much of yourself that people can't WAIT to steal your renewal sticker, but the fact is that in the incredibly unlikely and RARE case that happens, you can CALL THE DMV OR GO TO THE DMV AND GET A NEW PLATE...IT'S NOT.  THAT. HARD. 

The whole "people will steal your license plate / sticker" argument is wack because that's no excuse for purpously breaking the law and disregarding simple instructions.  That's like getting pulled over for speeding and telling the cop "well I was just keeping up with the other guys!".  You were speeding, they were speeding, you got caught.  These are called laws, not suggestions.  Sorry to go all "Dad" on you, but it's a silly argument and an excuse that no cop will buy.  

Jeez.  I wish I had that many excuses for breaking the law...

Have a great day and remember: your license plate isn't a scrapbook. Nobody is impressed you’ve been renewing since 2009 and nobody is going to steal your stickers. Stop it. 

Don't be an asshat.  

Talk to you in the morning.