Replacing a Lost License in New York
Losing your license or photo ID can be extremely worrying and inconvenient. If you've lost your New York driver's license, you may be worried about your ability to drive as well as the spread of key personal information.
You will want to promptly begin the steps to replace it, as you are not legally allowed to drive without your license on you.
If your NY driver's license has been stolen or lost as a result of a crime, you should file a report with your local police department. In doing so, you will help protect yourself from identity theft.
As an added benefit, if you report your stolen license or learner's permit to the police, the New York Department of Motor Vehicles (DMV) will waive your replacement fee. NOTE:This is not an option if you choose to replace your driver's license online (see below).
To properly report a stolen license and get your replacement fee waived:
- Obtain a Report of Lost, Stolen, or Confiscated Motor Vehicles Items (form MV-78B) from a police department. (You cannot get this form from the DMV.)
- Photocopy the form MV-78B for your records.
- Bring form with MV-78B when you apply for your replacement in person at your local DMV office. (See below for steps on applying in person.)
NOTE: The fee will not be waived for a replacement of a non-driver photo ID card.
You have several options to apply for a replacement license in the state of New York: online, by mail, and in person. However, certain eligibility requirements may apply and differ for each.
You may apply online for a replacement of a NY license, ID, or learner's permit if you meet the following eligibility requirements:
- Your original document was stolen, lost, or destroyed.
- If you are under 25 years old, this must be your first time ordering a duplicate document online.
- If you are over 25 years old, you have not requested a duplicate document online in the past 30 days.
- You will not be turning 21 years old within 40 days of applying.
- You license, learner permit, or ID cannot be:
- Suspended or revoked.
- Restricted or conditional.
- A duplicate document issued within the past 30 days.
- A “Valid without photo" document.
- A free non-driver ID card issued for SSI recipients age 62 years old or older (valid for 10 years).
- Your current mailing address must be on file with the DMV. If not, then you must update your address before the transaction.
- A duplicate requested online cannot be sent to addresses outside the U.S. (This applies to military addresses outside the country.)
- You are willing to pay the applicable fee. The waiver for filling out a police report (see above) does not apply online.
- You can wait at least 2 weeks to receive your duplicate license in the mail.
- You are requesting the same document type with the same information.
- You cannot change:
- Information such as your name or address.
- License class.
- Your document type (i.e., from regular to enhanced).
If you do not meet the eligibility requirements, then you must apply in person (see below).
If you are eligible, then you can go to NY DMV’s Internet Office Transactions page and begin the process. Be prepared to enter the following information:
- Your name and gender as it appears on your license OR your Client ID number.
- NOTE: If applying for a duplicate learner permit, you need your Client ID number.
- Your date of birth.
- The last 4 digits of your Social Security number.
- Your current zip code.
- Your email address (make sure your address accepts emails with the domain dmv.ny.gov).
- Credit card number for replacement fee (see below).
Once you submit payment, your transaction cannot be canceled or refunded.
You may apply for a replacement license or ID if you are applying for replacement of a regular New York license or ID. The DMV doesn't allow you to convert a regular document to an enhanced document by mail.
In order to apply for a replacement by mail, take the following steps:
- Download and review the How to Apply for a New York Learner Permit, Driver License or Non-Driver ID Card form (Form MV-44.1).
- Download, print, complete, and sign the Application for Driver License or Non-Driver ID Card (Form MV-44) (be sure to respond to all of the questions on the back of the form).
- Make copies of your proof of identity. NY provides a full list of acceptable ID and associated points.
- Determine the applicable fee. (See “Replacement Fees" below.)
- Mail in your completed application and photocopies with your proofs of ID to one of the addresses below. Include a personal check or money order payable to “Commissioner of Motor Vehicles" for the amount of the fee.
Send your documents to any NY DMV office.
If you don't have the proper documents , you won't be able to mail in your application. You will need to bring each proof of ID that you have to your local DMV office.
The benefit of applying for a replacement document in person is that you are issued a temporary driver's permit, which you can use to continue driving legally while you wait for your replacement license to arrive in the mail.
To apply in person:
- Go to your local DMV office.
- Complete the Application for Driver License Or Non-Driver ID Card (Form MV-44), which is available for download.
- Bring proof of identity. (NY provides a full list of acceptable ID and points for each).
- Pay the applicable fee (see “Fees"below). Acceptable payment methods include cash, check, money order, or credit card (Visa, MC, AMEX, Discover).
*Note: The replacement fee may be waived if your license was lost or stolen as a result of crime, and you bring the Report of Lost, Stolen or Confiscated Motor Vehicles Items (form MV-78B) that you received from the police department after you filed a report.
Alternate Addresses for Receipt
If you want your replacement license or ID sent to an address different from the one on your original document, you can indicate that on your form. To do so, write a note and print out your alternate address. DO NOT write the alternate address on your form – only on your note.
Applicants Under 21
If you apply for a replacement NY driver's license within 40 days of turning 21 years old, your new license or ID will not say “UNDER 21." However, you should understand that your replacement will arrive close to your birthday.
If you choose, you can apply for your replacement at your local DMV office to receive an interim document to use while you await your permanent replacement.
The fees are based on the type of document you are requesting:
- Learner's permit or license: $17.50.
- The Class type does not change the fee.
- Non-driver photo ID card (valid for 4 years or 8 years): $8.
- Non-driver photo ID card (valid for 10 years): $6.50.
- Non-driver photo ID card (valid for 10 years; holder is at least 62 years old AND receives SSI) is free.
- This type cannot be requested online.
Out-of-State and Military NY License Replacement
There are different steps to follow based on whether you are a NY resident who is out of state or traveling abroad, a member of the military stationed overseas, or a new resident to NY who has lost your out-of-state license before transferring it to a NY driver's license.
Out-of-State NY Residents
If you are a New York resident who is traveling or working out of state and you need to get a replacement license, you may apply by mail (see above) to have a duplicate license sent to your out-of-state address.
Military & Overseas License Replacement
If you are living or traveling out of the country or are a member of the military stationed abroad, you can apply for a replacement NY license or ID via mail (see above), but you cannot request your new document to be sent to an address outside the U.S. or to APO/FPO addresses. You must have it sent to an address in the States.
For additional questions, contact the NY DMV help desk at (518) 473-5595.
If you've lost your out-of-state license, you may be concerned about your ability to transfer your license once you get to NY.
You can apply to your previous state for a duplicate photo license. The duplicate license will need to prove that your license was valid for at least 6 months.
If you are unable to apply for a duplicate license, you can apply for a letter or driver abstract. These documents must:
- Be originals.
- Be on official DMV letterhead (from your previous state).
- Be issued by your previous state within 6 months from the time you submit it to the New York State DMV.
- Show all the following information:
- Birth date.
- Driver's license ID number.
- Class of license.
- Restrictions, if any.
- Convictions, revocations, or suspensions, if any.
- Issue date and expiration date.
If you are a New Yorker who operates a commercial vehicle in the state, you must carry a valid NY CDL at all times when driving. If your CDL is missing, then you need to get a replacement before getting behind the wheel of your commercial vehicle.
Apply for standard driver's licenses, permits, or ID cards, or to renew, replace, or make changes to them.
Checklist and instructions for permit, driver's license, and ID card applications, renewals, and replacements.
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