Since this is not New Mexico which only requires a back license plate on cars in their state, is it illegal to drive in Texas without a front license plate?

Texas requires that any vehicle must have a front license plate with the exception of road tractors, motorcycles, trailers, and semitrailers.

The fine for not having a front license plate on your vehicle is up to $200.

21 states do not require front license plates, they are (in alphabetical order):

  1. Alabama
  2. Alaska
  3. Arizona
  4. Arkansas
  5. Delaware
  6. Florida
  7. Georgia
  8. Indiana
  9. Kansas
  10. Kentucky
  11. Louisiana
  12. Michigan
  13. Mississippi
  14. New Mexico
  15. North Carolina
  16. Ohio
  17. Oklahoma
  18. Pennsylvania
  19. South Carolina
  20. Tennessee
  21. West Virginia

Ohio just recently removed its requirement for a front plate in 2020.

As trivial as the law sounds, there are good reasons to have a front plate on a vehicle.

License plates are reflective which makes them easier to see at night or during dusk hours and makes it easier for toll roads to scan the plate of a vehicle and agencies to read during traffic enforcement.

Police can also identify stolen vehicles faster with a front plate.

A more trivial reason would be in the case of people having vanity plates to express their style and having that seen from both the front and back.

The penalties for not having a front plate are similar in other states to the penalty in Texas, up to a $200 fine.

Most two-plate states will also give a fix-it ticket or a warning to first-time violators and the conditions of the ticket will vary from state to state.




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