Apply for or renew a trade plate

Who can apply

Trade plates may be issued to:

Apply for trade plates

What you will need

You will need to produce at least three of the following identification documents:

  • second hand vehicle dealer's licence certificate (MVLD)
  • Motor Trade Association (MTA) membership letter (must not be more than 12 months old at time of lodging the application)
  • a current RAA approved repair service agreement (must not be more than 12 months old at time of lodging the application)
  • any one of:
    • ASIC Business Name extract
    • ASIC Company extract
    • notice of issue of an ABN from the Australian Taxation Office
  • photographic evidence of workshop premises, internally and externally (this identification document is mandatory for mechanical repairers, panel beaters etc)
  • confirmation of Return to Work SA Registration
  • any one of:
    • White or Yellow Pages listing
    • reference to business website or social media account that shows clear evidence of conducting a business.

Photographic evidence will be a mandatory identification document for businesses such as mechanical repairers, crash repairs/panel beaters, car detailers (applications made by car detailers will be accepted on a case by case basis). Acceptable photographs may include but are not limited to:

  • car hoists/grease pit
  • large selection of tools that have permanent storage facilities (ie are not used out of a tool box)
  • chemical associated with the repair of vehicles (eg greases, solvents, oils)
  • vehicle parts
  • electronic/diagnostic equipment for vehicles
  • spray booths
  • clear business signage.

How to apply

Complete the forms:

Lodge your application forms, present your identification documents and pay the required fee at a Service SA customer service centre.

Replace a trade plate

A trade plate holder can apply for a replacement plate if the original plate is lost, stolen or damaged.

The plate holder must complete an Application for replacement of a trade plate (119.4 KB PDF) form.

If the plate has been lost or stolen:

  • the incident must be reported to the South Australia Police prior to completing the form

  • the Statutory Declaration section of the form must be filled out and signed by a Justice of the Peace.

If the plate has been damaged, it must be surrendered and the Surrender of number plate (190.5 KB PDF) form completed, in addition to the Application for a replacement trade plate form.

Trade plate sizes

The plate size issued depends on the type of vehicle categories that you nominate.

A motorcycle-sized plate will be issued if the only category nominated is motorcycle.

All other vehicle category types and combinations will be issued a general vehicle-sized trade plate.

Period of issue

A trade plate may be issued for one, two or three years. A certificate and label will be issued to you when all the requirements are completed.

Vehicle categories

You may apply for a trade plate to be used on the following vehicle categories.

Heavy vehicle

A motor vehicle or trailer that has a gross vehicle mass exceeding 4500 kg (excluding a farm implement and farm machine or special purpose vehicle).

The heavy vehicle category does not allow the trade plate to be used for vehicles that belong to the light vehicle category. If you wish to use a trade plate for both types of vehicles, you would need to nominate both categories in your application.

Light vehicle

A motor vehicle that has a gross vehicle mass not exceeding 4500 kg (excluding a motorcycle, trailer, farm machine, farm implement and special purpose vehicle).


Any motorcycle regardless of the engine capacity.


A trailer that has a gross trailer mass not exceeding 4500 kg (excluding a farm implement, farm machine and special purpose vehicle).

Farm implements and farm machines

Self-propelled farm machines and towed farm implements only.

Special purpose vehicles

Any vehicle not specifically designed for the carriage of passengers or goods including farm implements and farm machines.


It is an offence to use a trade plate on a category of vehicle that is not recorded on the certificate and label that is issued to you.

The Motor Vehicle Regulations 2010 detail the purposes for which a trade plate may be used.

Renew a trade plate

A renewal notice will be posted to you 42 days before the expiry date.

Complete the renewal notice and take it to a Service SA Customer Service Centre.

A trade plate may be renewed for one, two or three years.

To renew a trade plate, you must have received approval to be issued a trade plate within the last six months.

If you have not received approval within this time, an application for issue of trade plates (167.5 KB PDF) must be completed and presented with the renewal.

Contact Service SA


Only send general enquiries online. Service SA will respond within three working days.

If the matter is urgent or is specifically about your current licence or registration, phone or visit a customer service centre instead.

Enquire now


Call Service SA between 9:00 am and 5:00 pm Monday to Friday, excluding public holidays:

In person

Service SA Customer Service Centre locations and opening hours.

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Page last updated 29 September 2021

Provided by:
Department for Infrastructure and Transport
Last Updated:
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