Any person, corporation or partnership who sells used motor vehicles for retail or wholesale purposes in Florida must have a Florida Used Car Dealer License (AKA: Florida Independent Dealer License.) If you wish to sell new vehicles, please see our post on how to get a franchise dealer license in Florida.
The general rule of thumb is that if you deal 3 or more vehicles in a 12-month period, you must have a Florida Dealer License. These vehicles must be titled in your name. If you wish to flip vehicles for a profit, you will need to get a Florida Dealer License.
Before Getting Your License
You must take a Florida dealer license training course from an approved dealer training school before you apply for your license.
Find initial or renewal dealer training at the Florida Independent Automobile Dealers Association Dealer Training School or by calling 888-237-0448.
For a complete list of approved licensed dealer training schools, click here.
How to get a Florida Car Dealer License
Step #1: Receive Approval of dealership location by a DMV Compliance Examiner
Step #2: Complete Florida Used Car Dealer License Application
Download a Florida Used Car Dealer License Application.
Be sure to apply for the correct license type. The correct license type to sell used vehicles is the Independent Dealer (VI).
Step #3: Submit a fee of $300
- Fee is for each main location
- Make checks payable to "DHSMV"
Step #4: Purchase a $25,000 Florida Independent Motor Vehicle Dealer Bond
You will not need to pay $25,000 for your bond. You will pay anywhere from 1-15% ($250 - $3,750).
The purpose of this bond is to protect your customers. This is not insurance.
Step #5: Provide a copy of lease for location or proof of ownership
Step #6: Submit a garage liability insurance certificate
- $25,000 combined single-limit liability coverage
- a bodily injury and property damage protection and
- a $10,000 personal injury protection
Step #7: Provide copy of registration or business
You can do this with the Florida's Secretary of State - Division of Corporations
Step #8: Submit a copy of corporate papers and corporate meeting notes
These should show the election of corporate directors.
- If the dealership is a Corporation or Incorporation, submit Articles of Incorporation.
- If the dealership is a Limited Liability Company, submit Articles of Organization and Operating Agreement
- If the dealership is a Partnership, submit the Partnership Agreement.
Step #9: Sales Tax Number
Download the Florida Business Tax Application form from the State of Florida - Department of Revenue
Step #10: Submit your Federal Employer Identification Number
Secure it from the U.S. Internal Revenue Service (IRS).
Step #11: Submit your fingerprints along with corresponding fees
- $54.25 per person
Have a previous felony? Check out this post on Getting a Dealer License With a Felony.
Step #12: Submit paperwork
You need to submit your Florida Used Car Dealer License application with required documentation, your original Florida Independent Motor Vehicle Dealer Bond, and appropriate fees to the Florida Department of Highway Safety and Motor Vehicles.
Upon approval, you'll receive your newly issued Florida Used Car Dealer License in the mail within a month.
If you have questions about application procedures and licensing requirements, contact the Regional Office.
Florida Motor Vehicle Dealer License Renewal
Florida Dealer Licenses expire on April 30th of each year. You must renew your license annually. The cost is $75. All independent dealers must provide proof of at least 8 hours of continuing dealer training upon renewal.
Find initial or renewal dealer training at the Florida Independent Automobile Dealers Association: 888-237-0448.
The April 30th license expiration date should not be confused with the expiration date for other Florida Dealer Licenses. Franchise motor vehicle dealer licenses expire on December 30th, recreational vehicle dealer license expire on September 30th.