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How to Get a New Driver License in Virginia

Virginia drivers license services are provided by the Department of Motor Vehicles (DMV). Getting drivers license credentials is the next step required after you obtain a learners permit. To get drivers license credentials, you are required to meet certain eligibility requirements and pass DMV tests. Additionally, a Virginia drivers license is required if you are a permanent resident and wish to drive. In some cases, credentials for driving privileges are also required if you are a nonresident living in the state. Discover all of the drivers license information you need to apply for drivers license credentials in the state of VA.

When is a Virginia drivers license required?

A drivers license is always required in Virginia if you are a new driver and wish to obtain full driving privileges. You also need to get a drivers license in Virginia after you become a permanent resident of the state. If you are a nonresident of Virginia and are currently living in the state, then know that there are a few situations in which you may need to get Virginia driving credentials. First, you need to obtain a new drivers license in Virginia if you are a full-time, out-of- state student and are gainfully employed in VA. Second, you need to get a Virginia drivers license if you are a nonresident who is temporarily living in the state for more than six months. However, if you are a non-resident military member stationed in Virginia, then you do not need to get a new credential. As a nonresident, note that you may still be required to register your car in the state, even in situations that do not require you to obtain a new license.

Eligibility Requirements for Getting a Drivers License in Virginia

To get a drivers license as a first-time driver in Virginia, you must meet age and residency requirements. You can obtain a DMV drivers license starting at 16 years and three months of age. If you are submitting a VA drivers license application when you are younger than 18 years of age, then you will need to obtain a parent or guardian’s written consent. Before you can apply for a drivers license under the age of 18, you will also need to complete drivers education. Furthermore, you will need to prove that you have completed the necessary hours of driving practice and that you have held your learners permit for the required period of time. If you are a new resident, then you may provide proof that you completed drivers education and obtained a learners permit in your home state.

Documents Required for a Virginia Drivers License Application

When applying for a drivers license in Virginia, you will need to provide documentation showing your identity, legal presence in the U.S., Social Security Number (SSN) and your residency in Virginia. To fulfill the drivers license document requirements, you may submit the following:

  • Your Social Security card or any other official document displaying your SSN
  • A mortgage or rental agreement, utility bill, bank statement or other documentation showing your residency in Virginia
  • Postmarked mail or bills showing your name and address
  • A birth certificate, U.S. passport or Certificate of Naturalization
  • A current foreign passport or employment authorization document, if you live in a foreign country but need a Virginia license

Note that the Virginia drivers license documents listed above must be original documents. Getting a drivers license may not be possible if you bring in duplicates or uncertified copies of your documents. If you do not have one or more of the documents listed above, then the DMV will accept certain other types of official documents that show your name, address, SSN and legal presence.

How to Apply For Drivers License in Virginia

As a new driver, getting a Virginia drivers license requires that you submit an application and pass a driving test. You must get your drivers license in person. Obtaining your drivers license online is not an option. A driving license fee will be due with your application. The Virginia drivers license cost depends on which class of license you are applying for. Note that it is possible to apply for a drivers license and a learners permit simultaneously in Virginia. If you paid a drivers license application fee when you applied for your permit, then you may not owe a DMV fee for getting your license. After submitting your application, DMV personnel will tell you which tests are required for getting your license. Getting a drivers license may not require that you take a vision test or knowledge test. In most cases, a behind- the-wheel driving test will be required.

When you successfully pass your Virginia drivers license tests and meet all of the eligibility requirements, you will receive a license. If you apply for a drivers license for the first time when you are younger than 18 years of age, then your drivers license card will be delivered to a local juvenile and domestic relations court. You will receive a notification telling you when and where to appear in order to receive your license. Make sure to bring your parent or guardian to the court if you are younger than 18 years of age on your court licensing date. If you are older than 18 years of age when you apply for a drivers license in Virginia, then your card will arrive in the mail directly to you. Make sure the DMV has your current address. The Post Office will not forward DMV drivers licenses to a different address as it would forward other mail.

How to Get a Drivers License in Virginia as a New Resident

You may also be wondering how to get a drivers license in Virginia if you have just moved to the state. Note that you need to get a Virginia drivers license within 60 days of becoming a permanent resident of the state. In most cases, you can simply exchange your out-of- state driving credentials at the DMV. To do so, you need to submit a drivers license application, pay a fee and provide your residency, identity and legal presence documents. Know that Virginia DMV drivers license tests may be required as well.