Section d of the NC tag law allows YOM tags, but you must maintain and carry a current tag. The YOM tag is not even registered, so if you get pulled, you show the officer your current tag. This, btw, has no impact on the tax issue. But... section f says you cannot use an altered tag. I've got a Tri-Five buddy that displays a repo NC OO-0000 tag, and he gets pulled a lot. So, he shows the officer his current tag and a copy of the law. If that doesn't work, he offers to change the tag right there. So far, no ticket for an altered tag.