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  • Replacing a Lost License in South Carolina

    Replacing a Lost License in South Carolina

    A lost or stolen South Carolina driver’s license, permit, or ID is a serious issue. Not only does it prevent you from legally driving and providing proof of identity, but it also puts you at risk for identity theft.

    The South Carolina Department of Motor Vehicles provides several options for getting a duplicate—even if you’re out of state or away on military assignment.

    Report Your Lost or Stolen SC Driver’s License, Permit, or ID

    The SC DMV uses the Affidavit for Lost/Surrendered Driver’s License (Form DL-49) as a means of reporting your lost or stolen South Carolina driver's license to the DMV.

    Once you have the form:

    • Complete the bottom section for drivers with valid (not suspended) driver licenses.
    • Sign and date the affidavit.
    • Submit it with your duplicate license application.

    South Carolina recommends you report a lost or stolen license to law enforcement, too. Reporting your lost or stolen license is the first step toward preventing identity theft.

    Replace Your Lost or Stolen SC License or ID

    You can replace your lost South Carolina driver’s license online, in person, or by mail.

    NOTE: The following people must apply in person:

    • Minors.
    • Non-citizens.
    • Those replacing a commercial driver’s license (CDL).
    • Those with Provisional, Temporary Alcohol, or Route Restricted licenses.

    Apply Online

    Because it’s the quickest method, the SC DMV generally prefers drivers apply for a replacement license online.

    You’re eligible to apply online if:

    • You’re replacing a standard driver’s license. You cannot replace the following online:
      • Driver’s permit.
      • ID card.
      • Commercial driver’s license (CDL).
    • Your license is valid (not expired, suspended, revoked, or canceled).
    • You’re a U.S. citizen.
    • You haven’t applied for a duplicate license online within the last 12 months.
      • If you have applied for a duplicate within the last 12 months, you must visit a DMV office in person for your new duplicate.
      • Also note that if you’ve applied for over 3 duplicate licenses in one renewal period, the DMV may choose to investigate you.

    NOTE: If you’ve changed your name or address since your last license issuance, update the DMV before applying for a replacement. See our Address & Name Change page for details.

    If you are eligible, you may apply online at the Public Service’s Duplicate Driver’s License page. The system will guide you through the process, but you should have the following ready:

    • Driver’s license number. Contact your DMV office if you don’t remember the number.
    • Social Security number.
    • Date of birth.
    • A VISA, MasterCard, or Discover credit or debit card to pay the $10 fee.

    Any receipt or confirmation you get will not suffice as a temporary license, nor will a print-out of your driving record. The SC DMV reminds drivers it’s illegal to drive without a license—period.

    You should receive your license by mail within a couple of weeks. If you don’t, contact the DMV Call Center at (803) 896-5000. They’re open from 8:30 a.m. until 5 p.m., Monday, Tuesday, Thursday and Friday. On Wednesday the call center is open 9:30 a.m. until 5 p.m.

    Apply In Person

    Applying in person is the only way to get an immediate replacement license, permit, or ID; it also requires a few more steps.

    • Download and complete the Affidavit for Lost/Surrendered Driver’s License (Form DL-49). This form tells the DMV your license is lost or stolen.
      • Complete the bottom section for drivers with valid (not suspended) driver licenses.
      • Sign and date the affidavit.
    • Download and complete the Application for a Non-Commercial Credential (Form 447-NC).
      • Mark whether you need a beginner’s permit, driver’s license, ID card, or moped license.
      • CDL applicants: See “Replacing a Lost or Stolen CDL” below.
    • You may be required to provide additional documents if you’ve applied for a duplicate within the last 12 months.
    • Bring cash, a check/money order, or a VISA, MasterCard, or Discover credit or debit card to pay:
      • Replacement driver's license: $10.
      • Replacement permit: $2.50.
      • Replacement ID (persons 5 to 16 years old: $5.
      • Replacement ID (17 years old and up): Free.

    • If you are not a U.S. citizen, you must provide:
      • Proof of Identity.
      • Proof of birth date and place of birth.
      • Authorization to live, study, or work in the U.S.
      • Social Security card OR letter from the SSA that states that you are not authorized to work in the U.S.
      • Proof of residency in SC.
      • Information about your liability insurance (if applying for duplicate license).
    • If your address has changed, provide proof of residency (e.g., current employment record).
    • If your address has changed, provide proof of name change (e.g., marriage certificate).

    Apply By Mail

    Replacing a lost South Carolina license, permit, or ID by mail is the slowest process, but an ideal option for people unable to get to the DMV or who are out of state (see below for out-of-state and military information).

    To apply by mail:

    • Download and complete the same forms as outlined above.
      • Commercial drivers: See “Replace a Lost or Stolen CDL in SC” below.
    • Be sure to make updates to your key information if it’s changed:
    • Pay the same fees (see above by sending a check or money order made payable to the “South Carolina Department of Motor Vehicles”).
    • Mail everything to:
    • Department of Motor Vehicles
      P.O. Box 1498
      Blythewood, SC 29016

    If you do not receive your SC driver’s license in a timely manner, contact the DMV Call Center at (803) 896-5000. They’re open from 8:30 a.m. until 5 p.m., Wednesday.

    SC Out-of-State or Military License Replacement

    You’ll follow the mail-in instructions to replace a lost South Carolina driver’s license while out of state; the same goes for military license replacement and license replacement for dependents of military members.

    • Download and complete the Affidavit for Lost/Surrendered Driver’s License (Form DL-49). This form tells the DMV your license is lost or stolen.
      • Complete the bottom section for drivers with valid (not suspended) driver licenses.
      • Sign and date the affidavit.
    • Download and complete the Application for a Non-Commercial Credential (Form 447-NC) or, if you are replacing a CDL, the Application for a Commercial Driver’s License (Form 447-CDL).
      • Mark whether you need a beginner’s permit, driver’s license, ID card, or moped license.
      • If your name has changed since your last license, update the DMV. Our Changing Your Name page explains how.
      • If you need your replacement mailed to a different address, complete the “Special Mailing Address” OR “Temporary Mailing Address” sections.
    • Send a check or money order made out to the “South Carolina Department of Motor Vehicles” for:
      • Replacement driver's license: $10.
      • Replacement permit: $2.50.
      • Replacement ID (17 years old and up): Free.
      • Replacement ID (5 to 16 years old): $5
    • Mail everything to:
    • Department of Motor Vehicles
      P.O. Box 1498
      Blythewood, SC 29016

    If you don’t, contact the DMV Call Center at (803) 896-5000. They’re open 8:30 a.m. until 5 p.m., Wednesday.

    Replacing a Lost or Stolen CDL in SC

    You can replace your lost or stolen commercial driver’s license (CDL) in person or by mail; the SC DMV doesn’t allow online CDL replacements.

    • Download and complete the Affidavit for Lost/Surrendered Driver’s License (Form DL-49). This form tells the DMV your license is lost or stolen.
      • Complete the bottom section for drivers with valid (not suspended) driver licenses.
      • Sign and date the affidavit.
    • Download and complete the Application for a Commercial Driver’s License (Form 447-CDL).
      • Mark that you need a CDL replacement.
      • If your name has changed since your last license, update the DMV. Our Changing Your Name page explains how.
      • If you need your replacement mailed to a different address, complete the “Special Mailing Address” OR “Temporary Mailing Address” sections.
    • Pay the replacement fee:
      • In person: cash, check or money order, or VISA, MasterCard, or Discover credit or debit card.
      • By mail: check or money order made payable to the “South Carolina Department of Motor Vehicles.”
    • Bring the application and fees to your local DMV office or mail everything to:
    • Department of Motor Vehicles
      P.O. Box 1498
      Blythewood, SC 29016

    If you don’t receive it in a timely manner, contact the DMV Call Center at (803) 896-5000. They’re open until 8:30 a.m. until 5 p.m., Wednesday.

    CDL-Specific Replacement Requirements

    Generally, CDL-replacements have a few different requirements. Always call ahead to ask about:

    • The exact fee. The SC DMV charges a little more for CDLs than regular driver’s licenses.
    • Whether you need to bring or mail in any special identification or residency requirements.
    • Whether you need to bring or mail in your medical certification or waiver.

    Learn more about commercial driver requirements at our Applying for a New CDL in South Carolina page.