How to Get a Dealer License in Oregon

November 15, 2023

Team ACV




How to Get a Dealer License in Oregon

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Are you an experienced or new auto dealer looking to open up a car dealership in Oregon? You’ve come to the right place. No matter how much experience you have, the dealer license application process can be tedious, which is why we’ve created a checklist for you to follow. Using our recommendations, you can stay ahead of the game and get all of your details right the first time around, making it possible to open your business faster and sooner. 

Oregon Dealer License Application Checklist

1. Select Your Dealer License Type 

The type of business you intend to operate will determine which license you apply for within the state of Oregon. If you intend to sell motor vehicles, then choose a license for new or used vehicle dealers. There are also licensing options for motorcycle, moped, snowmobile, and ATV dealers.1

2. Register Your Business Information 

You will need to show proof of registering your business entity and its name, as well as proof of your sales tax registration which you can complete through the state. 

3. Set up your permanent business location 

Before proceeding with your application, you must establish a business location. In order to meet all requirements, the location must meet specified criteria and have the following qualities2:

  • Adherence with all local zoning rules and approval from authorities 
  • Enough space to display at least one vehicle 
  • Enable the public to make contact with the dealership during standard business hours (i.e., a phone line) 
  • Show a business sign that features the business name and is permanently attached to the building 
  • Show the vehicle dealer certificate 

Note that these requirements do not apply to wholesale dealers. 

4. Secure Liability Insurance and an Auto Bond 

The liability insurance certification is an important part of the dealer license application, and you must fill this out or have your insurance company fill it out. Some vehicle types are exempt from this requirement, so contact the DMV directly for more information. 

For the surety bond, the state of Oregon requires a $40,000 bond for used and new dealers and a $2,000 bond for motorcycles and other vehicle types. You will pay a portion of this total amount as a premium and receive a rate dependent on your personal financial standing. 

5. Pass the Pre-Licensing Course

Not every state requires dealers to attend a course, but Oregon makes this mandatory. New dealers must attend, pass, and receive a certificate from an 8-hour licensing training course. Oregon provides a few different options to take this course including through The Oregon Independent Auto Dealers Association. This certificate will have to be submitted along with your application. 

Some individuals may be exempt from having to complete this course, depending on previous experience. Contact the DMV to find out if this applies to you. Otherwise, find a registered education provider and complete the course before submitting your application. 

6. Submit Your Application and Fees

Oregon has higher fees than some comparable states, but these are required alongside your submission. The fees in Oregon are: 

  • Three-year license and one plate: $1,187
  • Additional locations: $350 each
  • Additional plates: $54 each 

Note that the license in Oregon is valid for 3 years, while many other states require a renewal every year. 

Then, you can submit and mail in your application to the following address: 

DMV Headquarters
1905 Lana Ave NE
Salem, OR 97314

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

Find Used Car Inventory in Oregon with ACV Auctions

Once you are licensed and ready to go, find high-quality used vehicle inventory from Oregon and across the country with ACV Auctions. The  ACV Auctions online platform offers unmatched transparency to guide your purchasing decisions. Each vehicle is fully equipped with an inspection report completed by our vehicle condition inspectors so you get to know each vehicle inside and out, all before bidding. Once you have your dealers license, register to become a member.


  1. Lance Surety Bonds. (2022). “How to get an Oregon dealer license.” Risk Strategies: Lance Surety Bonds. Retrieved November 8, 2023. 
  2. JW Surety Bonds. “Oregon Auto Dealer License Guide.” Risk Strategies: JW Surety Bonds. Retrieved November 8, 2023.