To:  DMV Regional Offices

From:  Carl A. Ford, Director

Subject:  License Requirements for the Sale of Trailers under 2,000 lbs.

Advisory Date:  06/19/06                               Implementation Date:  Immediately

Advisory Number:  BFO06-03



When a business sells or wants to sell trailers less than 2,000 pounds, we must provide correct information regarding dealer license requirements. This information is not clearly defined by statute. To get to definitive answer to the applicable requirements we must look at several statutes.  First we must look at the definition of motor vehicle as defined in Section 320.01 (1).


Section 320.01 (1)(a) Florida Statutes reads, “An automobile, motorcycle, truck, trailer, semitrailer, truck tractor and semitrailer combination, or any other vehicle operated on the roads of this state, used to transport persons or property, and propelled by power other than muscular power, but the term does not include traction engines, road rollers, such vehicles as run only upon a track, bicycles, or mopeds.”


The above statute applies only to the fact that all trailers must be registered to be operated upon the roads of Florida regardless of the size or weight.


When we look at the section of the law that applies to titling motor vehicles we find under Section 319.20 a pound limit for trailers requiring a title. Therefore, trailers under 2,000 pounds net weight do not require a title.


 Section 319.20, Florida Statute reads, “The provisions of this chapter apply exclusively, except as otherwise specially provided, to motor vehicles and mobile homes required to be registered and licensed under the laws of this state and defined by such registration laws. The provisions of this chapter do not apply to any moped or to any trailer or semitrailer having a net weight of less than 2,000 pounds.  All provisions of this chapter relating to title certificates also apply to any recreational vehicle type unit and to any mobile home classified and taxed as real property pursuant to s. 320.0815(2); and no title, lien or other interest in such vehicle or mobile home shall be valid unless evidenced in accordance with this chapter.”


To determine the dealer license requirements we look at Section 320.27 for the definition of motor vehicle as it applies to motor vehicle dealers.


Section 320.27(1) (b), Florida Statutes reads,  Motor vehicle” means any motor vehicle of the type and kind required to be registered and titled under chapter 319 and this chapter, except a recreational vehicle, moped, motorcycle powered by a motor with a displacement of 50 cubic centimeters or less, or mobile home.”

The key terms as set forth in the statutes is … to be registered and titled.


Section 320.27 (1)  (c), reads in part,  “Motor vehicle dealer” means a person engaged in the business of buying, selling, or dealing in motor vehicles or offering or displaying motor vehicles for sale at wholesale or retail, or who may service and repair motor vehicles pursuant to an agreement as defined in s.320.60 (1)…”


Based on a review of Section 320.27 (1)(b) that defines a motor vehicle of the type and kind required to be registered and titled and Section 320.27. (1) (c) which defines a “ motor vehicle dealer”, and because trailers under 2,000 pounds do not meet the definition of “a motor vehicle”, since they are not required to be titled, a business is not required to hold a dealer license in order to sell them. 


Larger retail or home improvement stores are not required to become a licensed dealer as long as they are selling trailers under 2,000 pounds. However, if these stores sell more than 25 trailers in a 12-month period that weigh 2,000 pounds, they are required to meet the license requirements of Florida Statute 320.27.


If you have any questions or need further clarification, please contact your Help Desk Representative.