Wisconsin Department of Transportation

Alert: The following services will be unavailable on Saturday, January 5, 2013 from 12 a.m. (midnight) to 6 a.m. CST due to system maintenance.

Donate Life Wisconsin Inc. license plates

Donate Life Wisconsin license plate

Transplantation holds the promise of life for thousands of patients with life-threatening conditions and diseases. The generosity of donor families, who at a time of great tragedy decide to help others, is immeasurable. However, the number of patients waiting continues to increase daily. The numbers speak for themselves:

  • More than 29,000 organ transplants, 46,000 eye transplants and 750,000 tissue transplants are performed each year in the U.S.
  • One of every 20 people in the U.S. will undergo a procedure that uses donated tissue.
  • A single tissue donor can help 50-75 people.
  • More than 7,400 families donated their loved one's organs in 2007.
  • In Wisconsin there are currently more than 1,400 people on the waiting list for an organ transplant. That number grows to almost 100,000 in the U.S.
  • Every 13 minutes a new name is added to the organ transplant waiting list.

Any one of us could someday be in need of a transplant. People with diabetes, high blood pressure, cystic fibrosis and other common illnesses are on the waiting list. Donated bones and tissue replace those lost to cancer, trauma, joint disease, arthritis and other conditions; and for burn victims, donor skin can make the difference between life and death. Heart valves give patients a chance to resume normal life, and transplanted corneas mean vision is restored.

Donate Life Wisconsin, a not-for-profit volunteer corporation, was formed to save more lives and improve the quality of life through organ, tissue and eye donation. Members meet throughout the year to organize awareness and outreach events designed to improve the public's knowledge and understanding of donation. Their goal is to increase the number of people in Wisconsin who say YES to donation. Your purchase will help defray the costs of an online donor registry: a vital step toward saving more lives in Wisconsin.

Vehicles that qualify

  • automobiles
  • motor homes (annual registration only)
  • trucks
    • 4,500, 6,000 or 8,000 pound gross weight including dual purpose farm and dual purpose motor home
    • 12,000 pound gross weight farm truck

Things you should know:

  • Donate Life Wisconsin license plates can feature regular numbers or a personalized message.
  • A $25 tax-deductible contribution to Donate Life Wisconsin, Inc., is required to issue and renew your plates each year, in addition to the regular registration fee. The $25 contribution may be tax deductible if you itemize your income tax returns.
  • A $15 issuance fee is required when non-personalized Donate Life Wisconsin plates are issued.
  • A $15 fee is required EACH year in addition to the regular annual registration fee and $25 contribution for personalized plates.
  • If the vehicle receiving Donate Life Wisconsin license plates is already titled/registered in your name, complete the vehicle section on form MV2956.
  • If the vehicle is not titled in your name, complete the title application form MV1 and form MV2956. Send them with all the required documents and fees to the address on form MV2956.
  • Plates may be transferred from an auto to a truck or vice versa upon payment of the full registration fee.
  • For more information, visit personalized and special plates FAQs.

How to apply:

Local DMV customer service centers do not have Donate Life license plates for immediate issue, but can process applications and the plates will be mailed. To apply by mail, send the following items:

  1. Complete Donate Life Wisconsin Plate Application form MV2956.
  2. $25 Donate Life Wisconsin contribution
  3. $15 issuance fee, if requesting non-personalized plates, or $15 personalized plate fee, if requesting personalized plates
  4. Annual registration fee if you do not have plates or if your current plates expire within the next three months
  5. Check or money order made payable to: Registration Fee Trust
  6. Mail with payment to:

    Wisconsin Department of Transportation
    Special Plates Unit
    P.O. Box 7911
    Madison WI 53707-7911

Personalized license plates

  • Personalizing your Donate Life license plates is optional.
  • A $15 personalized plate fee is required each year in addition to the regular annual registration fee.
  • Visit Personalized Plate Lookup to find out if your choice for a personalized license plate is available.
  • No refund or adjustment will be made for a change of choice or spacing after the plates are ordered or if the application is unclear or incorrectly completed.
  • WisDOT may refuse to issue, or may recall after issuance a request that may be offensive to good taste or decency, misleading or conflicts with any other license plate.
  • After you receive the Certificate of Registration, allow 4-6 weeks for the manufacturing and mailing process before the plates arrive.

Temporary plates required

To legally operate your vehicle, you must display license plates within two business days of purchase. If you do not have current plates, apply to a DMV service center or an agent authorized by DMV to obtain a temporary plate while your Donate Life Wisconsin plate order is processed. An agent may charge a $3 plate fee and/or may also charge a $5 service fee.

Changing from personalized to regular plates

If you wish to re-register your vehicle with regular license plates at renewal time or within three months of the renewal expiration date, send a copy of your Certificate of Registration or renewal notice with a request for standard plates along with the registration. Subtract $40 from the fee shown on the renewal notice. If you wish to re-register other than at renewal time, submit the request and a copy of the Certificate of Registration.

Changing from personalized to regular Donate Life Wisconsin plates

If you wish to re-register with regular Donate Life Wisconsin plates at renewal time or within three months of the renewal expiration date, send a copy of your Certificate of Registration or renewal notice with a request for regular Donate Life Wisconsin plates and fee shown on the notice plus a $25 contribution and $15 issuance fee. If you wish to re-register other than at renewal time, submit the request and a copy of the Certificate of Registration and $15 issuance fee.

Release of information

WisDOT uses the information on this form to issue Donate Life Wisconsin license plates. Under open records laws, WisDOT must make nonexempt information available upon request. If you want your name and address withheld from such business mailing lists, complete the "release of nonexempt information" portion on form MV2956.

Previous Back to Special and personalized license plates

Questions? Contact us: Wisconsin DMV email service
Call: (608) 266-3041
Fax: (608) 267-5106

Last modified: November 4, 2011

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