Why Doesn’t Michigan Require a Front License Plate?
There are plenty of laws one needs to abide by when driving. We all have to have valid driver's licenses as well as up-to-date insurance. And we all know that if you're driving a car in the United States, it has to have a license plate. And a valid one at that.
But have you ever noticed some out-of-state drivers have not one, but two license plates? This got me curious because Michigan does not seem to require that of its drivers.
I did a little digging and this is what I found.
States That Require Front License Plates
According to Autolist, Michigan is one of 21 states that does not require your vehicle to have a front license plate. It would have been 20, but Ohio decided to change things up and only require the rear license plate back in 2020.
Nearby states like Minnesota, Wisconsin, and Illinois are all part of the 29 states that require that a driver's vehicle have two license plates; a front one and a back one. Some of the pros of the two-license plate system include visibility because of its reflectiveness at night, crime-fighting potential because it would make it harder for those trying to hide or shield their identity, and an increase in revenue for the state.
However, Autolist does list some drawbacks as well. There are some cases where a front license plate may interfere with the advanced safety features of the car. Additionally, that added revenue that the state would get to look forward to, that burden would be put directly on the individual, which is not exactly cost-effective.
At the end of the day, I couldn't find exactly why Michigan doesn't require a front license plate. But, one day Michigan might decide to go the way of those 29 other states and require one. For now, just be happy that the cost of an extra plate isn't coming out of our pockets.