Driver's License FAQs

Summary: Driver's License FAQs

Find information on how to obtain a driver’s license, see the status of your license, check your driver’s license number, order a driving record, and more.

Driver's License Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

Looking for some basic driver’s license information? Below we’ve answered some common questions that will help get you on your way.

How do I get a driver’s license?

The process of obtaining a driver’s license varies by how old you are and the state you live in. Adults have their own path, and teens must meet their state’s Graduated Driver Licensing (GDL) requirements.

  • To learn how to get your adult driver's license (typically for applicants 18 years old and older), please visit our guide to Applying for a New License.
  • For information about teen drivers—including permit requirements and driving restrictions—visit our Applying for a Teen License page.

How do I check my driver’s license status?

The status of your driver’s license can fall under the following categories:

  • Valid.
  • Expired.
  • Suspended.
  • Revoked.

To lookup or find out the status of your driver’s license, you can either contact your local DMV office, or you can obtain a copy of your driver record online.

NOTE: Some, but not all, state DMV offices offer a free copy of your driver record. Contact your local DMV for specific information, or visit your state’s Driving Records page.

How do I find out if my license has been suspended?

If your driver’s license has been suspended, you will receive written notice from the DMV or the agency that handles licensing suspensions in your state. If you have not received written notice and you anticipate that your license is in jeopardy of being suspended, you’ll need to contact your local DMV office to check for a suspended license.

How do I reinstate my driver’s license?

If you have fulfilled your legal obligation for a license reinstatement, the process of getting your driver’s license reinstated depends on the state you live in. Typically, you will be asked to pay a reinstatement fee and re-apply for your driver's license over again.

Please visit our page on Suspended Licenses and choose your state to learn more.

I have not received my driver’s license. How do I find out where my driver’s license is?

Once you’ve completed your application and paid your required fees, it usually takes anywhere from 2 to 6 weeks to receive your license, whether you’re getting a driver’s license for the first time or you’ve recently renewed it.

If you believe that your license should have arrived by now and it is still missing, you should contact your local DMV office.

How do I check points on my driver’s license?

Many states use a points system to evaluate a person’s driving history. If you’ve ever been convicted of a traffic violation, you can find out how many points are associated with your driver’s license by requesting a copy of your driver record.

How do I get a copy of my driver record?

Your driving record keeps track of your driving history, and includes information from all states you’ve lived in. You can obtain a copy from your local DMV office, or you can order your driving record online and get it instantly.

NOTEAlthough you may have seen offers, we don’t know of any place that you can legitimately check your driving record for free online. Please be aware of scams that may offer this service to you.

How do I get a copy of someone else’s driving record?

You can only order someone else’s driving record if you are working in an official capacity as an employer AND your business is directly related to driving. The average Joe cannot order the driving record of another driver.

You may also be given permission to order another person’s record if you need it for legal purposes. A judge will typically give a court order for this action.

If you need to obtain a copy of other people’s driving records for employment or legal purposes, there are companies that offer this service.

I’ve lost my driver’s license—how do I find out my own driver’s license number so I can file a police report?

If you’re looking for your own driver’s license number, you may be able to find it on a cancelled check, a previous loan application, or some other paperwork that required you to provide your driver’s license number.

If you report a lost or missing driver’s license to the DMV, they should be able to give you your license number after you provide then with proper proof of your identification. They should also issue you a new driver’s license with a new number to prevent identity theft.

To find your nearest DMV office, please utilize our DMV Office Finder.

How do I find someone else’s driver’s license number?

In most states, it is illegal to obtain or search for someone else’s driver’s license number. There are companies that claim to offer this service, but be careful and read the fine print—there are reasons this information isn’t readily available.

If it’s a legal matter, you’re best off contacting the proper authority in your area.

How do I replace my driver’s license?

If you have lost your driver’s license, or if it was stolen, you’ll need to apply for a duplicate license in person at the DMV. Visit our guide to Replacing a Lost License for state-specific information.

You should also STRONGLY consider reporting the loss or theft to the police, as someone may use your missing license for purposes of identity theft.

DMV.ORG BBB Business Review