Q: If I get a DWI and elect to put on the W series plates (commonly called “whiskey plates”) on all my vehicles, do I have to put them on my collector car that I own?  


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A: Yes, you do, if you intend on driving it. All vehicles, including motorcycles and self-propelled RVs, solely or jointly owned, leased or registered in the driver’s name, are subject to the plate impound order. These vehicles may not be operated without special registration plates during the plate impound period.

The following DWI violations would qualify for the W series plates:

  • A second DWI violation within 10 years.
  • A DWI violation while having an alcohol concentration of twice the legal limit (0.16 or more).
  • A DWI violation while having a child under age 16 in the vehicle if the child is more than 36 months younger than the offender.
  • A violation by a person whose driver's license or driving privileges have been canceled under Minnesota Statute 171.04 , Canceled Inimical to Public Safety (multiple DWI violations).

Special registration plates issued must be displayed for at least one year from the date of incident. In some cases, they must be displayed for much longer than one year for multiple DWI offenses and other driving without license violations.

Below is a list of some of the other common special plates that can be applied for:

  • Pioneer plates for vehicles made before 1936.
  • Classic plates for vehicles made from 1925-1948.
  • Collector plates at least 20 years old and made after 1935.
  • Street rod plates for vehicles made before 1949 or made to look like a vehicle from before 1949.
  • Classic motorcycle plates for motorcycles 20 years old or older.
  • Original Minnesota plates for any collector vehicle or vehicle 20 years old or older.

For a list of the other special plates, go to dps.mn.gov/divisions/dvs/forms-documents/documents/special-plates-brochure.pdf.