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Ways to Replace a Lost License

Date posted: 06/06/2012

by Melissa Crumish on
in License & Endoresements

582 Ways to Replace a Lost LicenseReplace license applications are so common, Department of Motor Vehicle (DMV) offices have become extremely efficient in providing fast and easy ways to order a duplicate drivers license.

How Should YOU Replace Your Driver’s License?

The exact how depends on your state, and which of those options is most convenient for you. Every state uses at least one of the following methods, and some states offer a combination of options.

In Person

All states offer this option. Check online for the nearest motor vehicle agency office.

In some states, like Oregon and California for example, its the only way to order a duplicate license.

Before visiting, check with your DMV on what proof of identification is required. All states are extremely specific about this. Arrive without a required document and you’ll leave without a replacement drivers license.

When calling, also ask about accepted forms of payment. Many DMV offices do not accept credit or debit cards.


Though limited, this option, if provided, is extremely convenient. In Nevada, for instance, kiosks can be found in DMV lobbies and in public places including grocery stores. The process is fast and easy, no more difficult than renting an action movie from a Red Box.


You can find this option, if offered, on your DMV’s website. The page will provide full explanation on how to proceed.

In most cases you will need to provide some sort of ID number. It may be your drivers license number, or the last four digits of your Social Security number. You can pay with a credit card.

By Mail

Download a replacement license application from your DMV’s website. Complete and provide all required information (Pennsylvania, for example, mandates notarization). Mail the form and check to the address listed on the application.

Over the Phone

This option, if offered, is mainly reserved for residents who have lost their licenses while traveling out of state. If your state does allow for in-state use, a phone operator or recorded voice will provide instructions. Have a credit card at the ready.

After applying, you may receive a temporary drivers license until your permanent one arrives in the mail. Carry this with you when driving.

NOTE: Though not required, DMV offices strongly recommend reporting your lost or stolen license to the police.

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