Renewing Your License in Iowa

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Renew Your Driver's License in Iowa

Every driver in Iowa must have a valid IA driver's license. When your driver's license is near its expiration date, you'll need to renew it. Fortunately, the Iowa Department of Transportation (DOT) makes the process fairly easy.

If you need details about other types of licenses or permits, see any of our following pages:

Check Your IA Driver's License Status

Is your driver's license valid or suspended in Iowa? Find out by ordering your driving record online today.

When to Renew Your IA Driver's License

NOTE: If you moved to a new address, you will need to notify the DMV within 30 days of moving. You can update your record with the DOTonline. You will not be issued a new license if you update online. For more information, please see our Changing Your Address page.

You may renew your IA driver's license up to 30 days before it expires. In some cases, the Iowa Department of Transportation (DOT) will allow you to renew your driver's license up to 1 year before the expiration date; however, you will need to explain why you are requesting an earlier renewal.

The Iowa DOT has begun transitioning from a license validity period of 5 years to 8 years. During this transition, the DOT will randomly assign expiration dates from anywhere between 5 years and 8 years with the end result being that by December 31, 2018, all Iowa driver's licenses will be issued for a period of 8 years.

If you are 72 years old or older, your driver's license will be valid for 2 years.

Visit the DOT license renewal page for current validity periods issued based on your age.

Lost, Stolen, or Damaged Driver's License

If you are in need of a duplicate Iowa driver's license, you may be able to renew it instead of replacing it. However, you may want to verify with your local IA DMV office before proceeding.

To learn how to replace a lost, stolen, or damaged driver's license in Iowa, please read our page about Replacing a Lost License.

Expired Driver's License

Your Iowa driver's license remains valid for 60 days after the expiration date. The IA DOT gives you this extra time to process your renewal application.

If your driver's license has been expired for longer than 1 year, you must re-take the written and driving tests.

If you're unsure about the status of your driver's license in Iowa, you can always get a copy of your Iowa driving record.

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Renew Your Iowa Driver's License

You can renew your IA driver's license either online or in person at your local Iowa DMV office.

NOTE: If you are unable to renew in person due to being temporarily out of state, please see “Out-of-State Residents and Military Members" below.

If you haven't received your renewed license, you can check your renewal status with the IA DMV.


To renew your IA driver's license online using the Iowa DMV website, you must meet all of the following requirements:

  • You're at least 18 through 69 years old.
  • You are a U.S. citizen and resident of Iowa.
  • You have a valid non-commercial driver's license.
  • Your driver's license expires within the next 180 days or hasn't been expired for more than 1 year and 60 days.
  • You do NOT need to make any changes to your driver's license information (such as your name or address).
  • You last renewal was done in person.
  • Your driver's license does NOT have restrictions G, J, T, Q, or R.
  • You do not need to submit results from a medical or vision examination.
  • You do not have a driver's license that shows “Valid Without Photo."

If you're eligible, you will need to:

  • Visit the Iowa Online License Renewal website.
  • Have your current IA driver's license handy.
  • Submit payment by credit card for the driver's license renewal fee (see “Fees to Renew Your IA Driver's License" below).
  • You will be charged a $1.50 processing fee.

If you have any further questions, you can reach the Iowa DMV through their online contact form or by calling:

  • (800) 532-1121.
  • (515) 244-1052.

In Person

In most cases, you will be required to renew your license in person. You'll need to:

  • Visit the nearest Iowa driver's license station.
    • Call ahead to confirm business hours, since smaller locations may not be open some days during the week.
  • Complete a vision screening.
  • Pass the written test and driving test, if your license has been expired for more than 1 year.
  • Pay the required driver's license renewal fee.
    • See “Fees to Renew Your IA Driver's License" below for specific details.

For a full list of license types and fees, visit the DOT's license fee page.

Out-of-State Residents & Military

If you cannot renew your IA driver's license because you're temporarily out of state, you can request an extension depending on your situation.

NOTE: You can renew online while out of state, if you're eligible. See “Renew Your IA Driver's License" above.

Out-of-State Residents

If you are unable to renew your Iowa driver's license in person because you are temporarily residing outside the state, you can request an extension of up to 6 months. You must submit the request within 30 days before or 60 days after your driver's license expires.

To apply for a driver's license extension in IA, simply mail a completed Application for Temporary Extension of Motor Vehicle License (Form 430027) to:

Driver & Identification Services
Iowa Department of Transportation
P.O. Box 9204
Des Moines, IA 50306

You can also fax the completed form to (515) 237-1837.

Be sure to provide your out-of-state address or fax number.

Active-Duty Military Members

Notice for Military Members Stationed in Germany

If you are currently stationed in Germany, please be aware that some states require you to have a valid U.S. driver's license in addition to your USAREUR license. Read our article for more information.

If you're in the military (or a dependent of a military member) and unable to renew your IA driver's license in person or online, you are eligible for an extension of EITHER:

  • 6 months from the date you finish serving, for active-duty service members.
  • 5 years after your IA driver's license expires, for spouses/dependents.

You'll need to submit a completed Request for Extension of License for Military Service (Form 430081) by mail to:

Driver & Identification Services
Iowa Department of Transportation
P.O. Box 9204
Des Moines, IA 50306

You can also fax the form to (515) 237-3071.

NOTE: If applicable, you'll also need to attach a copy of your dependent's military identification.

Fees to Renew Your IA Driver's License

You must pay $4 per year to renew your driver's license. The IA DOT will determine how many years your driver's license will be valid. Please see the “When to Renew Your IA Driver's License" above for more details.

If you renew online, there is a $1.50 online processing fee.

For more specific fee information, please visit the IA DOT website.

Accepted Payment Methods

The Iowa DMV accepts the following payment methods, depending on how you opt to renew your driver's license:

  • Cash.
  • Check.
  • Credit card (online transactions).

Be sure to contact your local Iowa DMV office for specific details on how to pay your fees.

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