Here’s the latest reader question, along with my reply!
Derek asks: I’ve heard you can avoid having to renew annual registration as well as “safety” inspections by slapping Farm Use tags on your vehicle. Is this true?
My reply: Yes – with an asterisk.
Farm Use tags are similar to Antique tags in that they are permanent (i.e., no annual renewal fees) but also in that they are restricted. Technically – legally – a vehicle with Antique tags is only allowed to operate on public roads for “testing purposes” and to/from car shows. If an armed government worker thinks you’re using your Antique-tagged vehicle for regular transportation, he can hassle – and mulct – you.
Same goes for the Farm tags. You’re only supposed to use your Farm-tagged vehicle to deliver/get farm-related stuff (e.g., hay, deliver produce, transport livestock, etc.).
As a practical matter – in my experience – you can “get away” with driving around using either tag if your vehicle matches the tag.
What I mean by that is – as regards Antique tags – that the car look like an antique. Not an old piece of shit. I have never had an issue with AGWs while out driving my ’76 TA because it’s obviously a well-kept antique muscle car. But I expect I would have a problem if I drove around in a ragged out ’92 Taurus with Antique tags on it.
Similarly, Farm tags.
I could put them on my old truck and – with some hay in the bed – I doubt I’d get hassled and if I did, I could point out that I do have a farm (technically). But Farm Use tags on the ’92 Taurus and registered to someone who lives in suburbia probably isn’t going to cut it.
PS: With either tag, you’re still legally required to carry state minimum liability insurance.
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