How to Get a Dealer License in Arkansas

September 24, 2023

Team ACV




How to Get a Dealer License in Arkansas

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Getting a car dealer in Arkansas is pretty straightforward compared to other states. You just have to meet some standard requirements, such as having a business location, and then file your application for acceptance. In this article, you will find all the information you need to know to get your license and start your car dealership in Arkansas. 

Licenses Categories

In Arkansas, dealership licenses are issued by the Arkansas State Police or the Arkansas Motor Vehicle Commission if you plan to sell new vehicles. You can choose from one of these licenses in Arkansas, depending on your business plans:

  • Used Motor Vehicle Dealer: For selling used cars to the general public.
  • Wholesale Motor Vehicle Dealer: For selling cars only to licensed dealers.
  • New Vehicle Dealer: To sell new vehicles.

5 Dealer License Requirements

Before applying for a dealer license in Arkansas, you must fulfill these requirements:

1. Permanent Business Location and Phone Number: 

When applying for the license, make sure these four crucial requirements are fulfilled beforehand to avoid any mishaps or delays:

  • Business Location: You must establish a business location by either purchasing or leasing a suitable property. It’s crucial to contact your county’s planning board to ensure the selected site complies with local zoning regulations. If you opt for leasing, ensure that the lease agreement doesn’t expire before the end of the license, which is renewed annually.
  • Phone Number: Your business location must have an associated phone number registered under the business name and location. This phone number must be operational and answered during the license’s duration to ensure effective communication with customers and regulatory authorities.
  • Sign: A permanent sign, whether affixed to the ground or the building, is mandatory for the place to be approved by the authorities and get licensed. The signs should clearly display your business name and must be easily visible from the closest corner of the property during daylight hours.
  • Photos: When applying for your dealer license, you will be required to submit pictures of the location’s exterior. It’s essential to shoot high-quality images showing clearly that the signs are correctly placed. These photographs play a vital role in the approval process.

2. Business and Tax Registration: 

You must register your business with the Arkansas Secretary of State. If you plan to register the business as a corporation or LLC, you must obtain an Employer Identification Number from the IRS. Lastly, you must get a Sales tax identification number from the DFA (Department of Finance and Administration).

3. Liability Insurance: 

All dealers are required to maintain liability insurance covering damages to the vehicles within the business premises with a minimum coverage of $75,000. When applying for the license, you will be required to submit an insurance coverage certificate or proof of coverage.

4. Arkansas Auto Dealer Bond: 

Every dealer operating in Arkansas must have an auto dealer surety bond. Before starting your license application process, you must obtain a surety bond from a reputable insurance or surety company. The current amount for the Arkansas auto dealer bond amounts are as follows:

  • $25,000 for dealers of used cars.
  • $100,000 for used car dealers with satellite business.
  • $50,000 for new car dealers and $25,000 for each additional location. 

The bond’s premium, based on your credit score and financial standing, ranges from about 0.75 to 5% of the bond amount annually.

5. Additional Documentation: 

Your application must include a list of potential salespersons who will be involved in the dealership’s operations; a list of individuals with ownership interest in the business, including their names and relevant personal information; and the name and relevant information of the person in charge of receiving any legal notices, complaints, or disputes that may be filed against the applicant during business operations.

Applying For Your Arkansas Dealer’s License

Once you have everything ready, it’s time to apply for your dealer license. For used cars and wholesaler dealer licenses, you must submit the application and paperwork to:

Arkansas State Police
Attn: Used Motor Vehicles
#1 State Police Plaza Dr.
Little Rock, AR 72209

Licensing Fees

Licensing fee: $250.

Additional Locations: $125.

To apply for a new car dealer license, you must send your application and documents to the AMVC by mail to:

Arkansas Motor Vehicle Commission
101 East Capitol, Suite 204
Little Rock, AR 72201

Licensing Fees

License fee for primary location: $100.

License fee for each additional location: $25.

Salesperson fee: $15 each.

Business Inspection

Once your application has been successfully processed and approved, you will receive your used or wholesaler license by mail. Then, you will be contacted by an inspector from the Arkansas State Police to verify your business location, filing system, signage, telephone listing, and documentation process. 

If your dealership passes the inspection and meets all the necessary requirements, you will receive your license. Congratulations! You will then be fully authorized and ready to begin your operations.

Remember to Renew Your License Annually

All Arkansas dealer licenses expire annually on December 31st. To stay legal and continue your dealer operations without interruptions, it’s essential to renew your license with the ASP or AMVC in a timely fashion.

This is not intended as legal advice. If you have questions about dealer licensing requirements, please seek the assistance of legal counsel.

Partner with ACV Auctions upon Receiving Your Dealer License

Don't hesitate to partner with ACV as soon as you get your license. We are an online auto auction exclusively for dealers.  We have clean title inventory and wholesale inventory where you can find SUVs, Trucks, Sedans, Luxury cars and more. Even better, signing up with ACV is completely free. 


"Arkansas Auto Dealer License Guide." JW Surety Bonds, 25 Sept. 2023, Accessed 20 Sept. 2023.

"Arkansas Auto Dealer License Guide." Arkansas Dealer License Guide: Full Guide (2023), 25 Sept. 2023, Arkansas Dealer License Guide: Full Guide (2023). Accessed 20 Sept. 2023.