Germany is a country with a wealth of laws and regulations, including of course those relating to motor vehicles and road traffic. The road traffic regulations and the catalog of fines are examples of such regulations. Car license plates, which are mandatory for every vehicle in Germany, are also subject to certain restrictions. However, it is important to note that license plate regulations vary in different states differently can fail, so that in some federal states more license plates are permitted than in others.
Prohibited license plates: racist, discriminatory, xenophobic!
Of particular importance is the ban on license plates that are used on the basis of their symbolism or meaning are problematic. For example, the registration authorities do not issue any marks that are racist or discriminatory. This includes overtly racist or xenophobic messages and their abbreviations. If license plates contain or can be associated with political or extremist statements, they are too verboten. Furthermore, labels that contain vulgar expressions, offensive words and messages or that violate public order and good morals are often (not always) permitted. License plates that represent crimes or acts of violence, such as "MO-RD" are also occasionally not permitted.
Prohibited license plates in the respective federal states
It is important to know that the competent authority decides on a case-by-case basis whether a specific number plate is permitted or prohibited. Finally, new offensive or discriminatory terms may emerge, and there may also be regional differences. In order to ensure that the number plate you want is legal and approved, you should check whether the number plate you want complies with the regulations before you register. In the following table in the column "problem casesThe abbreviations mentioned are sometimes even allowed on the license plates, depending on the federal state. However, some could lead to misunderstandings or problems in road traffic or in the personal environment.
|Federal State||Forbidden marks||problem cases|
|Baden-Württemberg||Concentration camp, HJ, NS, SA, SS||HH, for Heil Hitler|
|Bavaria||KZ, HJ, NS, SA, SS; combinations:
AH & HH with 88 or 18, possibly also
with 28, N-PD, N-SU
|HJ, for Hitler Youth|
|Berlin||Concentration camp, HJ, NS, SA, SS||NS, for National Socialism|
|Brandenburg||KZ, HJ, NS, SA, SS; Numbers: 14, 18, 28, 88, 188, 1888, 8888 and 8818; Combinations: JN, HH and AH with 18||KZ, for concentration camps|
|Bremen||Concentration camp, HJ, NS, SA, SS||SS, for the protective squadron of the NSDAP|
|Hamburg||KZ, HJ, NS, SA, SS, SD, AH or HH in
Combination with 18, 88, 28
|SA, for Sturmabteilung|
|Hessen||Concentration camp, HJ, NS, SA, SS, SD||SD, for Reich Security Service|
|Mecklenburg-Vorpommern||Concentration camp, HJ, NS, SA, SS||NPD, for National Democratic Party of Germany|
|Lower Saxony||Concentration camp, HJ, NS, SA, SS||NSU, for National Socialist Underground|
|Nordrhein-Westfalen||Concentration camp, HJ, NS, SA, SS||18, for the first and 8th letters in the alphabet:|
|Rheinland-Pfalz||Concentration camp, HJ, NS, SA, SS, SD
Combinations: HH 18 and HH 88
|AH, for Adolf Hitler|
|Saarland||Concentration camp, HJ, NS, SA, SS||88, for twice the 8th letter in the alphabet, i.e. HH = Heil Hitler|
|Sachsen||Concentration camp, HJ, NS, SA, SS||74, for GD=Greater Germany|
|Sachsen-Anhalt||KZ, HJ, SA, SS; Digit combination: 88;
Prohibited in the Saale district: SK-IN
|Schleswig-Holstein||KZ, HJ, NS, SA, SS; Critical:
IZ-AN (backwards for NAZI) & HEI-L
|Thuringia||Concentration camp, HJ, NS, SA, SS|
these license plates also cause trouble
A few years ago, the license plate "HH 1933" was banned by a court because of links to National Socialism. Unfortunately, the exact name and date of birth of the data subject are unknown in this proceeding. What is certain, however, is that the legal dispute before the administrative court in Düsseldorf was lost. The vehicle had been registered in the district of Viersen with the combination "HH 1933". The Road Traffic Office initially approved the license plate, but withdrew it after a complaint from a citizen. This led to the vehicle owner filing a lawsuit, but the Düsseldorf Administrative Court upheld the decision of the Road Traffic Office and confiscated the number plate (Az.: 6 L 175/19).
some banned license plates are allowed again
In the meantime, however, some other issues are handled less strictly. For example, the license plate "S-EX" was not allowed in Stuttgart for a while, but is now allowed. The same applies to combinations such as "S-AU", "S-OS", "S-KY", "ANA-L" and also "SE-XY" are hardly a problem nowadays. One reason for this could also be the income be that municipalities achieve with such optional license plates. Berlin alone records annual income in the high six-digit range License plates. By the way, there are also many fun combinations of license plates. A comprehensive overview can be found in our article "Funny license plates - we've got the fun list!".
Of course, that wasn't the end of it.
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