Veterans’ Laws and Benefits

Motor Vehicle Benefits

Veterans' Plate

Eligibility

Veteran:
Veterans' plates are issued to veterans who served:

  • 180 days of regular active duty service (enlisted or drafted service) and a last discharge or release under honorable conditions (does not include training), or
  • 90 days of active duty service (Reservists or National Guard), one day of which is during "wartime" and a last discharge or release under honorable conditions (does not include training)

Veterans are eligible for one (1) set of plates for each vehicle registered in his or her name.

Procedure to Obtain Veterans' Plates: You must present one of the following documents to a full service RMV office or branch to verify your veteran status:

  • Honorable Discharge or DD Form 214 Release from Active Duty;
  • In addition to the verification listed above, you will need a copy of your current registration (if applicable), a signed and stamped Application for Registration & Title (RMV-1 Form) from your insurance agent (if a newly purchased vehicle), or a signed and stamped Application to Swap Plates (RMV-3 Form) from your insurance agent (if acquiring Veterans' plates on an existing registration), and the appropriate fee.

Fees: (subject to change)

  • Initial Registration Fee: $60.00;
  • Special Plate Fee: $40.00;
  • Renewal Fee: $100.00 every 2 years.

Renewal Cycle: Passenger plates must be renewed every two (2) years.
Proceeds from the special plate fee for this plate go to the Chelsea and Holyoke Soldier's Homes.

Veteran Motorcycle Plate:
Veterans' motorcycle plates are issued to veterans who served:

  • 180 days of regular active duty service (enlisted or drafted service) and a last discharge or release under honorable conditions (does not include training);
  • Or 90 days of active duty service (Reservists or National Guard), one day of which is during "wartime" and a last discharge; or release under honorable conditions (does not include training).

Procedure to Obtain Veterans Motorcycle Plate: An Application for Veteran's Plates must be completed. Along with this completed application, you must submit a photocopy of one of the following documents to the Special Plates Department of the RMV:

Honorable Discharge or DD Form 214 Release from Active Duty

Fees: (subject to change)

  • Initial Registration Fee: $20.00;
  • Special Plate Fee: $20.00;
  • Renewal Fee: $40.00.

Renewal cycle: Motorcycle plates must be renewed every year.

Mail the completed Application for Veterans' Plates and verification listed above to:

Registry of Motor Vehicles
Attn: Special Plates
P.O. Box 55895
Boston, MA 02205-5895
Tel: 857-368-8031

Once eligibility is verified, customers will receive their veteran motorcycle plate and registration via U.S. Mail.
Veterans are eligible for one (1) motorcycle plate for each vehicle registered in his or her name.

Veterans' Series License Plates

M.G.L. ch. 90, s.2

Bronze Star Plate*:
Bronze Star plates are issued to veterans who have been awarded a Bronze Star medal. A Bronze Star recipient must prove that he/she has been awarded the Bronze Star medal in order to receive these plates. Bronze Star recipients are eligible for one (1) set of plates for each Bronze Star medal received.

Procedure to Obtain Bronze Star Plates: An Application for Veteran's Plates must be completed. Along with this completed application, you must submit a photocopy of one of the following documents to the Special Plates Department of the RMV:

  • Honorable Discharge or DD Form 214 Release from Active Duty;
    or Statement of Service from the United States Veterans' Administration.

Once eligibility is verified, customers will receive their veteran license plates and registration via U.S. Mail.

Fees: There is no fee for the issuance or the renewal of the Bronze Star plates.

Renewal Cycle: These plates must be renewed every two (2) years.

Bronze Star Motorcycle Plate*:
Bronze Star motorcycle plates are issued to veterans who have been awarded a Bronze Star medal. A Bronze Star recipient must prove that he/she has been awarded the Bronze Star medal in order to receive these plates. Bronze Star recipients are eligible for one (1) Motorcycle plate for each Bronze Star medal received.

Procedure to Obtain Bronze Star Motorcycle Plate: An Application for Veteran's Plates must be completed. Along with this completed application, you must submit a photocopy of one of the following documents to the Special Plates Department of the RMV:

  • Honorable Discharge or DD Form 214 Release from Active Duty.

Once eligibility is verified, customers will receive their veteran motorcycle plate and registration via U.S. Mail.

Fees: There is no fee for the issuance or the renewal of the Bronze Star motorcycle plate.

Renewal Cycle: This plate must be renewed every year.

Congressional Medal of Honor Plate*:
Congressional Medal of Honor plates are issued to veterans who have received a Congressional Medal of Honor. Congressional Medal of Honor recipients are eligible for one (1) set of plates for each Congressional Medal of Honor received.

Procedure to Obtain Congressional Medal of Honor Plates: An Application for Veteran's Plates must be completed. Along with this completed application, you must submit a photocopy of one of the following documents to the Special Plates Department of the RMV:

  • Honorable Discharge or DD Form 214 Release from Active Duty.

Once eligibility is verified, customers will receive their veteran license plates and registration via U.S. Mail.

Fees: There is no fee for the issuance or the renewal of the Congressional Medal of Honor plates.

Renewal Cycle: These plates must be renewed every year.

Distinguished Flying Cross Plate:
Distinguished Flying Cross plates are issued to veterans who have been awarded the Distinguished Flying Cross medal while serving in any capacity within the Armed Forces. Distinguished Flying Cross recipients are eligible for one (1) set of plates.

Procedure to Obtain Distinguished Flying Cross Plates: An Application for Veteran's Plates must be completed. Along with this completed application, you must submit a photocopy of one of the following documents to the Special Plates Department of the RMV:

  • Honorable Discharge or DD Form 214 Release from Active Duty.

Once eligibility is verified, customers will receive their veteran license plates and registration via U.S. Mail.

Fees: There is no fee for the issuance or the renewal of the Distinguished Flying Cross plates.

Renewal Cycle: These plates must be renewed every two (2) years.

Distinguished Flying Cross Motorcycle Plate*:
Distinguished Flying Cross plates are issued to veterans who have been awarded the Distinguished Flying Cross medal while serving in any capacity within the Armed Forces. Distinguished Flying Cross recipients are eligible for one (1) Motorcycle plate.

Procedure to Obtain Distinguished Flying Cross Motorcycle Plate: An Application for Veteran's Plates must be completed. Along with this completed application, you must submit a photocopy of one of the following documents to the Special Plates Department of the RMV:

  • Honorable Discharge or DD Form 214 Release from Active Duty.

Once eligibility is verified, customers will receive their veteran license plates and registration via U.S. Mail.

Fees: There is no fee for the issuance or the renewal of the Distinguished Flying Cross Motorcycle Plate.

Renewal Cycle: This plate must be renewed every year.

Legion of Valor Plate*:
Legion of Valor plates are issued to members of the Legion of Valor of the USA, Inc. Legion of Valor members are eligible for one (1) set of plates. Legion of Valor members are recipients of the following medals:

  • Medal of Honor;
  • Distinguished Service Cross;
  • Navy Cross;
  • Air Force Cross.

Procedure to Obtain Legion of Valor Plates: An Application for Veteran's Plates must be completed. Along with this completed application, you must submit a photocopy of one of the following documents to the Special Plates Department of the RMV:

  • Honorable Discharge or DD Form 214 Release from Active Duty.

Fees: There is no fee for the issuance or the renewal of Legion of Valor plates.

Renewal Cycle: This plate must be renewed every year.

Legion of Valor Motorcycle Plate*:
Legion of Valor motorcycle plates are issued to members of the Legion of Valor of the USA, Inc. Legion of Valor members are eligible for one (1) motorcycle plate. Legion of Valor members are recipients of the following medals:

  • Medal of Honor;
  • Distinguished Service Cross;
  • Navy Cross;
  • Air Force Cross.

Procedure to Obtain Legion of Valor Motorcycle Plate: An Application for Veteran's Plates must be completed. Along with this completed application, you must submit a photocopy of one of the following documents to the Special Plates Department of the RMV:

  • Honorable Discharge or DD Form 214 Release from Active Duty.

Once eligibility is verified, customers will receive their veteran motorcycle plate and registration via U.S. Mail.

Fees: There is no fee for the issuance or the renewal of the Legion of Valor motorcycle plate.

Renewal Cycle: This plate must be renewed every year.

Pearl Harbor Survivor Plate*:
Pearl Harbor Survivor plates are issued to veterans who served in Pearl Harbor on December 7, 1941. A Pearl Harbor Survivor must prove that he/she served in Pearl Harbor on that day. Pearl Harbor Survivors are eligible for one (1) set of plates.

Procedure to Obtain Pearl Harbor Survivor Plates: An Application for Veteran's Plates must be completed. Along with this completed application, you must submit a photocopy of a Pearl Harbor Association membership card and a photocopy of one of the following documents to the Special Plates Department of the RMV:

  • Honorable Discharge or DD Form 214 Release from Active Duty.

Once eligibility is verified, customers will receive their veteran license plates and registration via U.S. Mail.

Fees: There is no fee for the issuance or the renewal of the Pearl Harbor Survivor plates.

Renewal Cycle: These plates must be renewed every two (2) years.

Pearl Harbor Survivor Motorcycle Plate*:
Pearl Harbor Survivor motorcycle plates are issued to veterans who served in Pearl Harbor on December 7, 1941. A Pearl Harbor Survivor must prove that he/she served in Pearl Harbor on that day. Pearl Harbor Survivors are eligible for one (1) motorcycle plate.

Procedure to Obtain Pearl Harbor Survivor Motorcycle Plate*: An Application for Veteran's Plates must be completed. Along with this completed application, you must submit a photocopy of a Pearl Harbor Association membership card and a photocopy of one of the following documents to the Special Plates Department of the RMV:

  • Honorable Discharge or DD Form 214 Release from Active Duty.

Once eligibility is verified, customers will receive their veteran license plates and registration via U.S. Mail.

Fees: There is no fee for the issuance or the renewal of the Pearl Harbor Survivor plates.

Renewal Cycle: This plate must be renewed every year.

Silver Star Plate*:
Silver Star plates are issued to veterans who have been awarded a Silver Star medal. A Silver Star recipient must prove that he/she has been awarded the Silver Star medal in order to receive these plates. Silver Star recipients are eligible for one (1) set of plates for each Silver Star medal received.

Procedure to Obtain Silver Star Plates: An Application for Veteran's Plates must be completed. Along with this completed application, you must submit a photocopy of one of the following documents to the Special Plates Department of the RMV:

  • Honorable Discharge or DD Form 214 Release from Active Duty;
    or Statement of Service from the United States Veterans' Administration.

Once eligibility is verified, customers will receive their veteran license plates and registration via U.S. Mail.

Fees: There is no fee for the issuance or the renewal of the Silver Star plates.

Renewal Cycle: These plates must be renewed every two (2) years.

Silver Star Motorcycle Plate*:
Silver Star motorcycle plates are issued to veterans who have been awarded a Silver Star medal. A Silver Star recipient must prove that he/she has been awarded the Silver Star medal in order to receive these plates. Silver Star recipients are eligible for one (1) motorcycle plate for each Silver Star medal received.

Procedure to Obtain Silver Star Motorcycle Plate: An Application for Veteran's Plates must be completed. Along with this completed application, you must submit a photocopy of one of the following documents to the Special Plates Department of the RMV:

  • Honorable Discharge or DD Form 214 Release from Active Duty.

Once eligibility is verified, customers will receive their veteran motorcycle plate and registration via U.S. Mail.

Fees: There is no fee for the issuance or the renewal of the Silver Star motorcycle plate.

Renewal Cycle: This plate must be renewed every year.

*None of the above plates are available in branches.

Mail the completed Application for Veterans' Plates and verification listed above to:

Registry of Motor Vehicles
Attn: Special Plates
P.O. Box 55895
Boston, MA 02205-5895
Tel: 857-368-8031

The Special Plates Department will mail you the plates. Please allow three to four weeks for delivery.


Disabled Veteran:
Disabled Veterans are eligible for one (1) set of plates. Disabled Veterans' plates are issued to veterans who:

  • Have a vehicle registered in their name;
  • Meet Medical Affairs guidelines*;
  • Provide the DV Plate letter from the Veteran's Administration that list impairments which otherwise qualify for disabled parking and total at least 60% service connected rating;
  • To obtain Disabled Veterans' plates you must be a Massachusetts resident.

* A Massachusetts registered and licensed physician, chiropractor, or nurse practitioner must certify that you meet one of the following conditions:

  • Cannot walk 200 feet without stopping to rest;
  • Cannot walk without the assistance of another person, prosthetic aid, or other assistive device;
  • Are restricted by lung disease to such a degree that your forced (respiratory) expiratory volume (FEV) in one second, when measured by spirometry, is less than one (1) liter;
  • Use portable oxygen;
  • Have a Class III cardiac condition according to the standards set by the American Heart Association;
  • Have a Class IV cardiac condition according to the standards set by the American Heart Association. A customer in this condition must surrender his or her license;
  • Have Class III or Class IV functional arthritis according to the standards set by the American College of Rheumatology;
  • Have been declared legally blind (please attach copy of certification). A customer in this classification must surrender his or her license;
  • Have lost one or more limbs or permanently lost the use of one or more limbs.

Procedure to Obtain Disabled Veterans' Plates: An Application for Disabled Parking Placard/Plate must be completed.

Mail the completed Application for Disabled Parking Placard/Plate and photocopy of your DV Plate letter from the Veteran's Administration stating that your disability is at least 60% service connected to:

Registry of Motor Vehicles
Attn: Medical Affairs
P.O. Box 55889
Boston, MA 02205-5889
Tel: 857-368-8020

For Hand Deliveries:

Haymarket Center
136 Blackstone Street, 3rd Floor
Boston, MA 02109

Fees: There is no fee for the issuance or the renewal of the Disabled Veteran plates.

Renewal Cycle: This plate must be renewed every two (2) years.

Disabled Veteran Fee/Tax Exemptions: Disabled veterans approved for a Disabled Veteran (DV) plate by the RMV's Medical Affairs Branch are exempt from paying the following fees/taxes:

  • Registration Fee (per M.G.L. Chapter 90, Section 33(29))
    Disabled veterans do not need to pay a registration fee for one passenger vehicle or pick-up truck. It must be owned by the veteran and used for non-commercial purposes. The veteran can choose either one set of DV plates or one set of passenger plates. If the veteran chooses passenger plates with an additional special plate fee (special, vanity, or reserved plates), the special plate fee must be paid. If the veteran owns additional vehicles, registration fees must be paid for those vehicles;
  • Driver License Fee (per M.G.L. Chapter 90, Section 33(29))
    Disabled veterans do not need to pay fees for driver's license transactions. It does not matter if the veteran has obtained DV plates, but he/she must be approved for them;
  • Excise Tax (per M.G.L. Chapter 60A, Section 1)
    Disabled veterans do not need to pay excise tax for one passenger vehicle or pick-up truck. It must be owned by the veteran and used for non-commercial purposes. It does not matter if the veteran has obtained DV plates, but he/she must be approved for them. Application for the excise tax exemption must be made to the board of assessors of the city or town where the vehicle is registered. If the veteran owns additional vehicles, excise tax must be paid for those vehicles;
  • Sales Tax (per M.G.L. Chapter 64H, Section 6)
    Disabled veterans do not need to pay sales tax for one passenger vehicle or pick-up truck. It must be owned by the veteran and used for non-commercial purposes. To be eligible, the veteran MUST obtain DV plates for the vehicle. If the veteran purchases additional vehicles, sales tax must be paid for those vehicles.

Ex-Prisoner of War Plate:
Ex-POW plates are issued to former prisoners of war. Available in all full service branches. Ex-Prisoners of War are eligible for one (1) set of plates.

Procedure to Obtain Ex-POW Plates: You must present one of the following documents to a full service RMV branch to verify your eligibility:

  • Honorable Discharge or DD Form 214 Release from Active Duty.

In addition to the verification listed above, you will need a copy of your current registration (if applicable), a signed and stamped Application for Registration & Title (RMV-1 Form) from your insurance agent (if a newly purchased vehicle), or a signed and stamped Application to Swap Plates (RMV-3 Form) from your insurance agent (if acquiring Ex-POW plates on an existing registration).

Fees: There is no fee for the issuance or the renewal of the Ex-POW plates.

Renewal Cycle: These plates must be renewed every two (2) years.

Ex-Prisoner of War Motorcycle Plate:
Ex-POW motorcycle plates are issued to former prisoners of war. Ex-Prisoners of War are eligible for one (1) Motorcycle plate.

Procedure to Obtain Ex-POW Motorcycle Plate: You must present one of the following documents to a full service RMV branch to verify your eligibility:

  • Honorable Discharge or DD Form 214 Release from Active Duty.

In addition to the verification listed above, you will need a copy of your current registration (if applicable), a signed and stamped Application for Registration & Title (RMV-1 Form) from your insurance agent (if a newly purchased vehicle), or a signed and stamped Application to Swap Plates (RMV-3 Form) from your insurance agent (if acquiring Ex-POW plates on an existing registration).

Fees: There is no fee for the issuance or the renewal of the Ex-POW motorcycle plate.

Renewal Cycle: This plate must be renewed every year.

Purple Heart Plate:
Purple Heart plates are issued to veterans who have been awarded a Purple Heart medal. Available in all full service branches. A Purple Heart medal recipient must prove that he/she has been awarded a Purple Heart in order to receive these plates. Purple Heart recipients are eligible for one (1) set of plates for each Purple Heart medal received.

Procedure to Obtain Purple Heart Plates: You must present one of the following documents to a full service RMV branch to verify your eligibility:

  • Honorable Discharge or DD Form 214 Release from Active Duty;
  • Statement of Service from the United States Veterans' Administration.

In addition to the verification listed above, you will need a copy of your current registration (if applicable), a signed and stamped Application for Registration & Title (RMV-1 Form) from your insurance agent (if a newly purchased vehicle), or a signed and stamped Application to Swap Plates (RMV-3 Form) from your insurance agent (if acquiring Purple Heart plates on an existing registration).

Fees: There is no fee for the issuance or the renewal of the Purple Heart plates.

Renewal Cycle: These plates must be renewed every two (2) years.

Purple Heart: Update – April 2015:
Per the Valor Act II the Registry of Motor Vehicles (RMV) is in the process of redesigning the "Purple Heart" license plate that is issued to recipients of the Purple Heart medal. The plate will continue to display an image of the Purple Heart medal, but will now read, "ORDER OF THE PURPLE HEART RECIPIENT" and "COMBAT WOUNDED". The redesign and manufacture process can take up to four months after a design has been finalized. The RMV will mail replacement plates to current plate holders, and provide an update on this website when the new design is available.

Purple Heart Motorcycle Plate:
Purple Heart motorcycle plates are issued to veterans who have been awarded a Purple Heart medal. Available in all full service branches. A Purple Heart medal recipient must prove that he/she has been awarded a Purple Heart in order to receive this plate. Purple Heart recipients are eligible for one (1) motorcycle plate for each Purple Heart medal received.

Procedure to Obtain Purple Heart Motorcycle Plate: You must present one of the following documents to a full service RMV office to verify your eligibility:

  • Honorable Discharge or DD Form 214 Release from Active Duty;
  • Statement of Service from the United States Veterans' Administration.

In addition to the verification listed above, you will need a copy of your current registration (if applicable), a signed and stamped Application for Registration & Title (RMV-1 Form) from your insurance agent (if a newly purchased motorcycle), or a signed and stamped Application to Swap Plates (RMV-3 Form) from your insurance agent (if acquiring Purple Heart motorcycle plate on an existing registration).

Fees: There is no fee for the issuance or the renewal of the Purple Heart motorcycle plate.

Renewal Cycle: This plate must be renewed every year.

By law, all of the above passenger plates must be renewed every two years, except for Legion of Valor and Congressional Medal of Honor, which must be renewed every year. All of the above motorcycle plates must be renewed every year.

The following documentation is required for ALL veteran plates: A photocopy of member page four of your DD Form 214, or any DD Form 215 amending your DD Form 214 granting your award (needed only if award is not annotated on your separation documents). A photocopy of your current vehicle registration.

Distinctive Military Emblems

A veteran who has been issued a "Veteran" (Flag) plate will be furnished (upon request) a distinctive emblem which identifies the branch of the armed services in which the owner served or the wartime service in which such owner served. There is no preferential treatment implied in the issuance of the veterans' series plates as there is for the disabled veterans' plates. There is an additional cost for the veterans' series plates, and they cannot be used for a vehicle requiring a commercial registration under Massachusetts law. See above for information on obtaining a Veteran series plate.

Veterans' Plate Decals: These are available for both Veterans' (FLAG) passenger and motorcycle plates.

Where to apply:

Registry of Motor Vehicles
Attn: Special Plates
P.O. Box 55889
Boston, MA 02205-5889
Tel: 857-368-8031

Veteran's Indicator Policy

All Massachusetts residents who are veterans of the U.S. Armed Forces and were honorably discharged can choose to have a Veteran's Indicator on their Driver's License, Learner's Permit, Massachusetts ID card, or Liquor ID card If they choose this, the word "Veteran" will be printed on the lower right corner of their license or ID card, or in the bottom center of their learner's permit. There is no additional fee for the Veteran's Indicator, but all regular transaction fees will apply.

One of the following documents (typed, not handwritten) must be presented as proof of honorable discharge:

  • DD Form 214 that indicates honorable discharge;
  • DD Form 215 that indicates honorable discharge;
  • Honorable Discharge.

There is a question on the Class D, M, or DM License and ID Card Application and the CDL Application asking if the customer is a veteran and if he/she would like the Veteran's Indicator. A customer who wants the Veteran's Indicator on his/her Driver's License, Massachusetts ID card, or Liquor ID card must answer "yes" to this question when applying for, renewing, or ordering a duplicate license or ID card.

The Veteran's Indicator cannot be added during a transaction that is completed online. To have the Veteran's Indicator added to a driver's license or ID card, the customer will need to visit a Registry branch office. If the customer prefers not to visit a branch, he/she can continue with the online transaction, but the Veteran's Indicator will not appear on the driver's license or ID card that he/she receives in the mail.