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New York Auto Dealer License: Step-by-Step Guide

  • Learn how to get licensed in a few easy steps
  • Understand the licensing requirements for your state
  • Learn how to stay compliant
  • Get a free license bond quote in minutes
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Auto dealer licenses are issued by the New York Department of Motor Vehicles. The Original Facility application for dealers can be downloaded here and includes an explanation of the application requirements


When Do You Need an Auto Dealer License?

You are required to have a license if you sell five or more vehicles in any one-year period on a retail basis. You must display three or more vehicles at all times at your dealership location.

Determine Which Type of License You Need:

  • Retail Motor Vehicle Dealer, New: Sell new motor vehicles
  • Retail Motor Vehicle Dealer, Other: Sell used motor vehicles, buy/sell wholesale motor vehicles, motorcycles, RVs, trailers, trucks
  • Wholesale: Sell to other dealerships, but not to the general public

1

Obtain a Permanent Business Location


Your business location must include:

  • Clear and permanent physical barrier from other businesses that may share your location (separating display areas, signs and offices)
  • Display lot
  • Mailbox at the business address dedicated to your business only
  • Method of locking items securely (locking cabinet, safe, etc.)
  • Heat, electricity, desk and chairs
  • Landline business phone (cell phone is acceptable)
  • Your dealership must follow the zoning rules for your jurisdiction

There are strict requirements for your business sign. It must have:

  • Red background and white lettering
  • At least 3 feet wide by 2 feet tall
  • Must display “REGISTERED (Facility Number) STATE OF NEW YORK MOTOR VEHICLE DEALER” in 2” block lettering
  • Should be permanently mounted and visible at all times from the nearest street or highway

2

Obtain Your Auto Dealer Bond

New York auto dealers are required to obtain a surety bond prior to submitting a dealership application.

Bond amount required:

  • Retail and Wholesale dealers (other than New) that sold 200 or fewer vehicles in the past 12 months: $10,000
  • Retail and Wholesale dealers (other than New) that sold 200 or more vehicles: $25,000
  • New Retail dealers (franchised cars, SUVs, light trucks) and dealers selling vehicles over 10,000 pounds: $50,000


3

Obtain Proof of Liability Insurance

You are required to have liability insurance that will cover vehicles owned or operated by the dealer and sporting dealer plates. Proof of insurance must be included with your license application.


4

Purchase Your Dealer’s Starter Kit

All new dealers need to purchase a Dealer’s Starter Kit. The list of vendors is available on the DMV site.This kit includes:


5

Compile the Required Documents

The following documents must be provided with your application:

  • Official Business Certificate of Registration from the county clerk
  • Federal employee ID number (FEIN), proof of worker’s compensation, and disability insurance coverage
  • Sales tax number and a copy of the Certificate of Authority issued by the New York State Department of Taxation and Finance
  • Proof of Workers Compensation Insurance for your employees
  • Photocopies of driver’s licenses or other government-issued photo ID for everyone listed on the application
  • A receipt for your purchase of the dealer’s starter kit and signs
  • For a corporation or LLC: Filing Receipt from the New York Department of State
  • For a partnership or an individual using an assumed name: Business Certificate from the County Clerk

6

Arrange for a Business Location Inspection

To arrange an inspection, you should contact the local DMV office.


7

Submit Your Dealer License Application

The Original Facility Application and supporting documentation must be sent to the following address:

Bureau of Consumer and Facility Services
Attention: Application Unit
P.O. Box 2700
Albany, NY 12220-0700

Fees:

  • Motor vehicle dealer business fee: $487.50
  • MV-50 fee: $260

Note: Separate checks must be made out for the two fees


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