I would like to install a license plate flipper so I can hide my license plate when I am on private property. I have no need and no intention of hiding my license plate when driving on public roads.

How do I find out if they are legal to install?

I don't drive out of state so I am really only interested in the legality of installing the device in my state (GA)?

It is obviously illegal to flip the plate on a public road so answers stating this obvious fact are not helpful.

1 Answer 1


Washington state dedicated a section of their code to explicitly make this illegal (to install it, not just use it). RCW 46.37.685(1)(b) says

It is unlawful for a person to have an installed license plate flipping device on a vehicle, use technology to flip a license plate on a vehicle, or use technology to change the appearance of a license plate on a vehicle.

and it is illegal to sell them. Georgia does not seem to have a specific law on the topic, but the same effect holds under GA Code §40-2-41, which says:

Unless otherwise permitted under this chapter, every vehicle required to be registered under this chapter, which is in use upon the highways, shall at all times display the license plate issued to the owner for such vehicle, and the plate shall be fastened to the rear of the vehicle in a position so as not to swing and shall be at all times plainly visible... It shall be the duty of the operator of any vehicle to keep the license plate legible at all times. No license plate shall be covered with any material unless the material is colorless and transparent. No apparatus that obstructs or hinders the clear display and legibility of a license plate shall be attached to the rear of any motor vehicle required to be registered in the state.

We can start with the question of whether the vehicle must be registered: yes, it does. Then we can ask if "which is in use upon the highways" is true. This is not obvious, because that clause could be interpreted as meaning "which is at some time or other in use upon the highway", or else as "at those times when it is in use upon the highway". I strongly suspect that the courts would find in favor of the first interpretation, not the second, especially since the law also says that you must "keep the license plate legible at all times" (not "at all times when you are on the highway"). Finally, a plate flipper clearly "hinders the clear display and legibility of a license plate", and the law prohibits the attachment of such device, not just its use.

So obscuring your license plate is just not legal.

Your Answer

By clicking “Post Your Answer”, you agree to our terms of service, privacy policy and cookie policy

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.