How do I get a license for a used car dealership?
You must submit a complete Application for Used Motor Vehicle Dealer License. Refer to the Information Sheet for Used Motor Vehicle Dealers for more detailed information on the required documents that must be sent with the application. Prior to preparing the application, you must attend a Board-approved pre-licensing seminar, and obtain an established place of business and a working telephone number listed in the business name. At the established place of business, you must erect an appropriate permanent sign, advertising your business as a used car dealership.
What are licensing fees for a used car dealer license?
Refer to the Fee Schedule for current fees for licensure.
What is an “established place of business”?
An “established place of business” is defined in the Official Code of GA Annotated, O.C.G.A 43-47-2 (3), as “a salesroom or sales office in a building or on an open lot of a retail used car dealership or at which a permanent business of bartering, trading, offering, displaying, selling, buying, dismantling, or rebuilding wrecked or used motor vehicles or parts is carried on, or the place at which the books, records, and files necessary to conduct such business are kept. Each such place of business shall be furnished with a working telephone listed in the name of the licensee for use in conducting the business and shall be marked by an appropriate permanent sign as prescribed by the appropriate division under this chapter.”
Can I operate a used car dealership out of my home?
Whether you can lawfully operate a used car dealership out of your residence will depend upon the requirements and restrictions of your local zoning ordinances. Even though you plan to operate from your residence, you must meet the requirements of an “established place of business”, as defined in the Used Motor Vehicle Dealers’ and Used Motor Vehicle Parts Dealers’ Registration Act and Board Rule 681-6-.01, which is available for review on our website. You should contact your city or county Planning & Zoning Office to determine if current regulations will allow you to operate the business from your residence. You should also ask if current regulations will allow you to erect a permanent sign at your residence to advertise your business as a used car dealership. The Board rule requires a permanent sign to be displayed at the location of the dealer’s office, and the rule further requires that the dealership office must be in a detached building on the residential property that is fully furnished according to the requirements of an established place of business. The dealership cannot be set up in the residence.
What is an “appropriate permanent sign”?
The sign used to advertise your business must be of a permanent nature, as opposed to a banner or one along the lines of a real estate sale sign. “Appropriate” is determined by the city or county regulations that detail the restrictions in signage in your area. You will need to discuss the restrictions with your local zoning or business license office. Board requirements for a permanent sign can be reviewed in Board Rule 681-6-.01(d).
I don’t want to set up a car lot. I just want to be a broker. How do I become a broker?
The Used Motor Vehicle Dealer License allows a dealer to sell from an established place of business. This established place of business can be a used car lot, or it can be an office from which used cars are brokered. The licensing requirements for a broker are the same as for a dealer with an open lot. Please refer to the Information Sheet for Used Motor Vehicle Dealers for the requirements.
What is a “designee”?
The designee is the person named by a corporation, a limited liability company, or a partnership to be the responsible license holder for the business. The business can have only one license holder; therefore, the license is issued to the business with the designee as the license holder. The designee assumes full responsibility for the operations of the licensed dealership on behalf of the partnership, corporation, or limited liability company. A sole proprietorship does not name a designee, because the sole owner is the license holder for the business and is considered by the Used Motor Vehicle Dealer Board to be the responsible person for the operations of the licensed dealership. The designee can be an officer, if the dealership is owned by a corporation, a partner, if the business is owned by a partnership, or an employee of the business. The designee makes application for the used motor vehicle dealer license on behalf of the corporation or partnership. When the application is submitted, the designee must submit the certificate of completion of the pre-licensing seminar to prove that the designee completed the required seminar. Other officers or partners do not have to submit proof that they have attended, although they will be wise to attend. The designee must also follow the fingerprinting process described in the application instructions.
How do I find out about pre-licensing seminars in my area?
Contact the Board-approved seminar providers, listed on our website, for information on schedules and fees for pre-licensing seminars in your area.
Will my dealership be inspected before I am licensed?
Yes, an inspector will schedule a pre-license inspection to ensure that your dealership is compliant with Board law and rules for an established place of business. You should not submit your application until you are sure that your dealership meets the requirements; otherwise, a failing inspection will delay issuance of the license. A follow-up inspection will be necessary to ensure the business is compliant with the law and rules of the Board.
After I submit my application, how long will it take to get my license?
Please allow 30 days from the date you mail the application to obtain your license. If you provide an email address on the application, you will receive an email acknowledging receipt of the application as soon as the fee is deposited and initial data entry establishes the application in our database. Once the license is issued, you will receive an email notifying you of the issuance of the license. You can verify your license when it is issued by going to the License Verification page on our website. You can also track the status of your application on our website by choosing the Check the Status of an Application button or link.
May I open up my dealership while my application is being reviewed?
You may not legally operate a used motor vehicle dealership without a license. See O.C.G.A. 43-47-7
How many photographs do you require?
The photographs of your business must show the outside of the facility, to include the sign. Whether you will need to submit one photograph, or multiple photographs, will depend upon whether you can sufficiently show your place of business and your sign in one photograph. If your business is in a suite in an office complex, your photograph(s) must show your business listed on the marquee of the office complex, and you must submit photograph(s) of the suite door, indicating your signage on the door. A photograph of the inside of the facility that shows the established office is advisable.
Can more than one dealership be licensed at the same location?
According to Board Rule 681-3-.05, joint used motor vehicle dealer operations may be conducted, provided licensees maintain a separate office, outside entrance, inventory, records, and files necessary to conduct business. Each licensee at the location must ensure that the business name in which the license is listed appears on all business documents and vehicles offered for sale by the licensee. Each licensee must also have the required signage and telephone listing in the business name.
How long do I have to submit the application, once I complete the pre-licensing seminar?
One year from the date of seminar completion.
How do I find out about continuing education seminars?
Contact the Board-approved seminar providers , listed on our website, for information on schedules and fees for continuing education seminars in your area.
When does a used car license expire?
All used motor vehicle dealer licenses are two-year licenses, expiring on March 31 of the even year. Licensed dealers will receive a renewal notification approximately eight weeks prior to the expiration date. Notification will be made by email for those dealers who provide accurate email addresses, which is the best and fastest way for our agency to correspond with dealers. Dealers who do not provide an email address will be notified by postcard of the open renewal period.
What licenses do I need to operate a used motor vehicle auction?
You will need to submit an Application for Used Motor Vehicle Dealer License and an Application for Auction Company License. You may also need to submit an Application for Auctioneer License, if you are not a licensed auctioneer, and you plan on auctioning the vehicles yourself. You must have a licensed auctioneer to conduct the auctions. Refer to the License Requirements for Auctioneer for further information on becoming a licensed auctioneer.
I want to open a second location under the same dealership name. How do I do that?
Submit an Application for Used Motor Vehicle Dealer License, and check the box for Supplemental License. The designee must be the same as for the original license. The accompanying documents will be required for this supplemental license application as was required for the original location’s license, with the exception of the proof of pre-license seminar completion. The application must instead submit proof of completion of the most recent continuing education seminar. Fingerprint processing through Cogent Systems is required for supplemental or additional location applications. The same bond issued to the original location may be used for the supplemental, but a copy of the bond must accompany the supplemental application. The certificate of insurance must be amended to list the additional location. An original amended certificate must accompany the supplemental application.