Arlington County Code requires a county decal to be displayed on the front windshield of every vehicle within 60 days of purchasing the vehicle or moving it into the county. Arlington County Police will ticket all vehicles garaged, stored, or parked in Arlington County that do not display a valid county decal.
- The County decal changes every year with your annual vehicle personal property tax payment in October, and you must display the new County decal by November 15 each year.
If you are a new resident/resident with a new vehicle
- Register your vehicle with the Commissioner of Revenue’s Office
- Pay the decal fee — $33 for most vehicles (Note: If you’ve moved from another county that required a decal and it was issued within the current tax year — January 1 to December 31— the Treasurer’s Office will issue you a County decal for no fee if you present proof of purchase from the issuing county.)
- Look for your decal in the mail, which should arrive within seven to 10 days after the Treasurer’s Office receives your decal payment
If you are a current resident
- Who doesn’t have a newly registered vehicle, you will receive your decal with your tax bill
- Who has outstanding debt with the County, you will not receive your decal with your tax bill — you will receive your vehicle decal from the Treasurer’s Office once you pay your outstanding debt and the decal fee
Note: You must pay all personal property taxes and any outstanding debt, including parking violations, to receive your vehicle decal from the Treasurer’s Office.
If you didn’t receive a County decal with your bill or have any other decal-related questions, call 703-228-4000.
Voting for the Next Vehicle Decal has Closed
The winner of the 13th Annual Decal Design Competition will be announced at the Arlington County Board meeting on January 31, 2017. Stay tuned!
Last year’s winner was Ryan Kovich, a current junior at Wakefield High School. His submission was entitled “Arlington is for Enjoyment.”
Background on Decals
Arlington began requiring local licensing of vehicles in 1949, which took the form of a metal tag attached to the license plate. The first windshield decal was issued in 1967; decals were first produced with a color image in 2000. In 2003, residents were given the opportunity to vote on the image, and in 2005 the Treasurer’s Office started the Decal Design Competition for high school students.