Driving Privilege Card in Delaware

As of 2015, Delaware residents of any nationality who cannot prove legal presence in the United States may apply for a Driving Privilege Card through the Division of Motor Vehicles (DMV) that permits you to drive anywhere within Delaware state lines ONLY. This card is NOT legal proof of identification—it is strictly a Delaware driver's license. If you do possess proof of legal presence in the U.S., you are not eligible for this card.

The Delaware DMV provides checklists of the below information:

What Is the DE Driving Privilege Card?

The Delaware Driving Privilege Card (DPC) is a result of Senate Bill 59, passed in 2015. This card gives driving privileges only to residents of the state who cannot provide documents proving their legal presence in Delaware.

This card is available to anyone who:

  • Is a foreign Delaware resident.
  • Cannot document citizenship or authorized presence in the United States.
  • Meets certain eligibility requirements (see below).

The Driving Privilege Card will be marked with the phrases Driving Privilege Only" and Not Valid for Identification," which prevent the holder from using it as a form of legal identification. This card is intended solely to allow undocumented Delaware residents the driving privileges they need to get about their daily lives within the state.

Before you can earn your full DPC, you will first receive a DPC permit—a learning permit to practice driving before you take the required road test (see below). After you pass your road test, the DPC will be exchanged for a full Driving Privilege Card.

Each of these cards is valid for the following periods:

  • Driving Privilege Card: 4 years.
  • DPC permit: 6 months.

Once you cross state boundaries, the Delaware DPC is NOT a valid driver's license—you may only use it within state lines.

License Eligibility Requirements

To be eligible for a DE Driving Privilege Card, you must:

  • Have filed taxes in Delaware for at least the last 2 years.
  • Be able to provide ORIGINAL or CERTIFIED copies of all required documents (see below for a list and descriptions).
    • Documents may not be expired, changed, or photocopied.
    • If foreign documents are not written in English, they must be translated into English by a professional translator; these translated copies must accompany the original documents.
  • NOT be a:
    • U.S. citizen; OR
    • Foreign national with documents proving legal status in the United States.

Below are details on acceptable documents allowed for each of these requirements.

Required Documents

  • State Bureau of Identification (SBI) receipt.
  • Certificate of Filing Compliance from the Division of Revenue.
  • Proof of your:
    • Name.
    • Birth date.
    • Name change (if applicable).
    • Residency in Delaware.

Examples of acceptable documents are all listed below.

SBI Receipt

Before beginning the application process with your local Delaware DMV, you must FIRST contact the Delaware State Bureau of Identification(SBI) and make an appointment for fingerprinting and identity verification. The fee for these services is $52.

The SBI representative will provide you with a receipt that contains:

  • Your name and birth date.
  • The receipt number.
  • An “appear on or after" date to visit the DMV.

You will need to bring this receipt with you to the Division of Motor Vehicles when you apply for your Driving Privilege Card.

To begin the process, call the SBI at (302) 739-2528. You can find SBI locations through their website or through the Delaware DMV.

Certificate of Filing Compliance

Delaware requires that you prove your tax payments to the state for the previous 2 years. To do this, the DE DMV requires a Certificate of Filing Compliance issued by the Delaware Division of Revenue (DOR).

You can either:

  • Visit the Delaware (DOR) website.
  • Schedule an appointment with the DOR at (302) 577-8200.

The Certificate of Filing Compliance will contain:

  • Your name, plus those of any spouse and/or dependent(s).
  • Your years of tax filing.
  • Your Social Security number (SSN) or Individual Taxpayer Identification Number (ITIN).
    • NOTE: If you are applying for a Driving Privilege Card, you will not have a SSN. However, if your spouse or dependent has one, it will show up on this report.
  • A DOR document locator code.

Acceptable Proofs of Name & Birth Date

You will be required to provide 1 document from the following list. All documents below must be valid and unexpired.

  • Foreign passport.
  • Consular identification document (consular card) issued by the following countries:
    • Mexico
    • Brazil
    • Colombia
    • Ecuador
    • Guatemala
  • Mexican Federal Electoral Card.

If you are a minor (i.e. under 18 years old), you must also provide in addition to one of the above:

  • Original birth certificate listing both of your parents.
  • Translated copy.

Acceptable Proofs of Residency

You must provide 2 documents proving your residency in Delaware, taken from the following list. Each document must be from a separate source AND must be original; copies or printouts will be rejected. Mail cannot be marked to a P.O. Box; it must be addressed to your residence.

  • Bank statement.
  • Utility bills.
  • Rent or mortgage agreements.
  • Credit card statement.
  • Records of employment.
  • Change of address form through the U.S. Postal Service.
  • Non-personal mail with a postmark within the previous 60 days.

Apply for a Driving Privilege Card

Making an Appointment

Once you have gathered the above documents, including those required from the State Bureau of Identification and the Division of Revenue, you MUST make an appointment with the Delaware DMV for your initial application and evaluation. If you do not make an appointment, the DMV cannot guarantee they will be able to service you.

To make an appointment:

  • Call (877) 477-7117.
  • Provide your:
    • Current contact information.
    • SBI receipt number.
    • Appear on or after" date on the receipt.

DPC Permit

Before you are issued your full DE Driving Privilege Card, you must first apply for a DPC permit.

At your scheduled appointment with the Delaware Division of Motor Vehicles, you will need to:

  • Submit all required documents listed above, including:
    • Original or certified copies.
    • Translations, if applicable.
  • Pass a vision exam.
  • Pass a written knowledge test.
  • Pay the $20 fee.

Once you have completed the above, you'll be given your DPC permit and will schedule your road test for your full Driving Privilege Card.

Your permit is good for 6 months, and you MUST hold it for at least 10 days before you take your behind-the-wheel road skills exam.

Road Test & Issue of DPC

At your scheduled road test, you will demonstrate your skills behind the wheel. You can use your permit for up to 6 months to practice driving, but you must appear at your road test on the date you scheduled at your permit application.

After you have passed your road test, your Driving Privilege Card will be issued and you can use it for the next 4 years. After this time, you will need to renew it using the documents and criteria listed above. You may or may not need to retake any or all of the above exams.

DPC Driver's License Restrictions

The Driving Privilege Card is a driver's license ONLY. It gives you the freedom to:

  • Use your DPC for transportation purposes.
  • Drive within Delaware state lines.

You MAY NOT use your DE DPC to:

  • Drive outside of Delaware.
  • Prove your identification.
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