According to Missouri law, a motor vehicle dealer is anyone who sells, barters, leases, or exchanges more than 6 motor vehicles in a calendar year. Here are the steps you need to take to get your Missouri Car Dealer License.
Note that individuals are allowed to sell up to 6 vehicles in a year, as long as those vehicles are titled in their name and used primarily for personal, family, and household use.
How to get a Missouri Car Dealer License
Step #1: Establish a Place of Business
Your place of business must be used for the sole purpose of selling motor vehicles. Be sure to check your local zoning laws so you can get your zoning approved. You must have a display lot and a business sign.
Step #2: Complete Missouri Dealer License Application
Step #3: Get Business Location Inspected
Section 13 of the Missouri Dealer License Application is for an inspection of your facility. You must get your business location certified for your application to be complete.
Your inspection certification must be completed by either an authorized police officer, an agent of the City Theft Division, or the Missouri Highway Patrol, depending on where your dealership is located.
- Police officer: Boone, Buchanan, Camden, Cape Girardeau, Clay, Cole, Franklin, Greene, Jackson, Jasper, Jefferson, Platte, St. Charles, Taney
- City Auto Theft Division: St. Louis County or St. Louis City
- Missouri Highway Patrol: Any other county not listed
Step #4: Submit Background Check
If you are a resident of Missouri, you can start your background check online. Background checks cost $12 per person.
If you are a resident of any other state, you will need to submit a background check from your State Highway Patrol or State Bureau of Investigations. Your background check must be current (no more than 30 days old.)
Worried about a felony or conviction on your record? Check out this post "Can I Get A Dealer License With A Felony?"
Step #5: Register Your Business Name
Step #6: Purchase Insurance
You must maintain insurance on every vehicle you own. If you have a garage on-site, you must also maintain garage liability insurance.
Step #7: Purchase Missouri Motor Vehicle Dealer Bond
Before you can be issued a Missouri Car Dealer License, you will need to purchase a Missouri Motor Vehicle Dealer Bond.
Not sure how to get an Auto Dealer Bond? Use this interactive tool to help you out.
Missouri has set the bond amount at $50,000.* You will not need to pay this full amount to get bonded. Instead, you will just pay a small portion of it. This is a one-time payment, not monthly.
Get a free quote below:
*The bond amount increased from $25,000 to $50,000 on August 28th, 2018.
About the Missouri Motor Vehicle Dealer Bond
A Missouri Motor Vehicle Dealer Bond is not insurance for you. It is insurance for your customers. Your customers can make a claim on your bond at any time. You can learn more about the bond claim process.
A Dealer Bond is a requirement before you can get licensed.
Step #8: Attend a Missouri Dealer Educational Seminar
You most likely will be required to attend a state-mandated Missouri Dealer Educational Seminar as your last step in the process to get your MO Dealer License. Find a class near you by viewing the Class Schedule.
When you complete your course, you will be issued a Dealer Educational Seminar Certificate of Completion that you will need to include with your Dealer Application.
Step #9: Submit
Submit your Missouri Dealer License Application and all other paperwork to the MVB Dealer Licensing Section at the address below. Be sure to include a $150 application fee.
Motor Vehicle Bureau
Dealer Licensing Section
Post Office Box 43
Jefferson City, Missouri 65105-0043
License Expiration and Renewal
Missouri Dealer Licenses expire on December 31st of every year. You will need to renew your dealer license each year to remain in compliance. The Department will contact you before your renewal date with information on how to renew.
For more information and answers to common questions, view the Missouri Dealer Operating Manual.