People often think that getting a license means you can keep it permanently. In fact, it’s not. There will be a valid number that appears on your DMV license. After the valid date, you need to contact the DMV office of your state to take a DMV Renewal License Guideline. In this post, we are going to introduce a quick guide on how to renew your DMV registration card.  

dmv renewal
How to renew your DMV driver’s license?


1. What is a DMV registration license card?

A DMV registration card is a document supplied to the owner of a vehicle with registering vehicles, containing the owner’s name and address as well as a description of the vehicle, and is issued to the owner once the vehicle has been registered. The words “registration certificate,” “registration receipt,” and “registration renewal receipt” all refer to the same thing. In brief, a DMV registration card is a license that allows you to operate a specific type of vehicle. In order to get the DMV license card, you must take the DMV Test, which consists of a DMV Written Test and the DMV Road Test. We strongly suggest you take the DMV Written Test Study Guide and DMV Driving Test Study Guide in order to know how to pass them as well as score high.


2. Why do you need to get your DMV renewal?

In general, your DMV driver’s license is not a permanent license. Depending on which state are you living in, the duration of your DMV license will be different. You can look at the table below to see the valid date of your DMV license, we already organized it in proper rank from shortest to longest time:

Actually, the Arizona DMV doesn’t require you to renew your license but every 12 years, you need to update your photos and take the vision exam. 

States Valid years States Valid years
Vermont 2-4 years Maryland 5 to 8 years
Colorado 3 years Connecticut 6 years
Alabama 4 years Indiana 6 years
Illinois 4 years Kansas 6 years
Kentucky 4 years Louisiana 6 years
Michigan 4 years Maine 6 years
Minnesota  4 years Missouri 6 years
Mississippi 4 years Texas 6 years
New Jersey 4 years Washington 6 years
Ohio 4 years Arkansas 8 years
Oklahoma 4 years Florida 8 years
Pennsylvania 4 years Georgia 8 years
North Dakota 4 years Hawaii 8 years
New Mexico 4 to 8 years Idaho 8 years
Alaska  5 years Iowa 8 years
California 5 years Montana 8 years
Delaware 5 years Nevada 8 years
Massachusetts 5 years New York  8 years
Nebraska 5 years North Carolina 8 years
New Hampshire 5 years Oregon 8 years
Rhode Island 5 years Tennessee 8 years
South Dakota 5 years Virginia 8 years
Utah 5 years Wisconsin 8 years
Washington D.C 5 years Wyoming 8 years
West Virginia 5 years South Carolina 10 years
Arizona  12 years



3. How to get your DMV renewal registration?

In general, there are three possible ways for you to renew your DMV registration. You can choose one of these three listed methods here to get your DMV license renewal.


3.1. Go to the DMV office

A traditional way for you is to come to your DMV office and asked the staff there to help in the renewal process. Generally, you must provide the following documents:

  • Identity, such as a valid U.S. passport or a certified copy of a birth certificate.
  • Social Security Number (SSN), such as an SSN card, 1099 form or pay stub.
  • Residency, such as bank statements or insurance policy.
  • Proof of lawful presence in the U.S., such as a passport or permanent resident card.


3.2. Online

If you are tired of making a long line and waiting in the DMV office, our recommendation for you is to go to your DMV office website and then find the DMV renewal. All you need is to upload all the needed documents and the results of the vision test. 


3.3. Mail

These days, to save your time and your effort, the DMV decided to create an ultimate method. When your DMV license is about the expire, they will send you a DMV renewal invitation. If you still want to drive your vehicle, all you need to do is accept this invitation and wait for the delivery. However, this method only can be applied if you just renew your card without taking a new photo. If you want to change the photo, you still have to come to the DMV office and take a new picture. 

dmv renewal license
You can renew your DMV license in optional ways


4. What are the possible fees to renew your DMV license?

As mentioned above, each state has its own DMV renewal requirements and fees. You can look at the table here to find what is your state’s fee. We organized them from the lowest to the highest price:

States Fee States Fee
Arizona $1.00 Nevada $5.28
Iowa $1.25 Nebraska $5.30
Wyoming $1.88 Louisiana $5.38
Tennessee $2.44 South Dakota $5.60
West Virginia $2.50 Missouri $5.60
South Carolina $2.50 Mississippi $6.00
Indiana  $2.92 New Jersey $6.00
Kansas $3.00 Florida $6.00
North Dakota $3.75+ Maryland $6.00
Alaska $4.00 Minnesota $6.31
Georgia $4.00 Ohio $6.44
Virginia $4.00 California $6.60
Texas $4.17 Idaho $6.88
Wisconsin $4.25 Illinois $7.50
New Mexico  $4.25-$4.50 Pennsylvania $7.63
Michigan $4.50      Washington D.C. $7.80
Kentucky $5.00 New York $8.03
Delaware $5.00 Oklahoma $8.38
Utah $5.00  Colorado $8.67
Maine $5.00 Washington $9.00
Arkansas $5.00 Alabama $9.06
Hawaii $5.00 Massachusetts $10.00
North Carolina $5.00 New Hampshire $10.00
Oregon $5.00 Connecticut $12.00
Montana $5.06 Rhode Island $12.30
Vermont $12.75 – $16.00


5. FAQs – Frequently asked questions about DMV registration renewal


5.1. I’m going to renew my registration online. Is it important which browser I use?

We recommend that you use the most recent version of one of the following web browsers:

  • Chrome by Google
  • Edge by Microsoft
  • Firefox by Mozilla
  • Safari (iOS/Mac)

To ensure that the DMV website loads properly, make sure JavaScript is enabled in your browser. If you’re having trouble with your current browser, try one from the list above. If you continue to experience issues, you can contact your DMV office technical support for DMV renewal.

dmv license renewal
You should use the most recent version web browser

5.2. How long would it take to receive the updated registration and registration sticker if I renew online?

Within two weeks, you will receive your new registration and sticker. You may also check the Vehicle Registration Renewals website of your state for current renewal processing timeframes to get an idea of how long it will take for your registration to arrive in the mail.


5.3. This year, I do not plan to drive my vehicle. Is a DMV renewal fee still required?

No. If you do not plan to use your car this year but intend to keep it, you must apply for Planned Non-operation online. Then you must pay the PNO filing cost. If you decide to operate your car or park it anywhere where it may obtain a parking citation after applying for PNO, you must pay the entire vehicle registration costs and penalties for that year.


5.4. I lost my DMV driver license, can I renew it?

Generally, you can. Follow the instruction of DMV License Lost: What Can You Do to Replace it? to replace your license.


In summary, you have 3 methods to renew your DMV card, which are Online, via Mail, and In person. You can choose the most suitable ways for you and make sure to get your DMV registration renewal. If you are looking for a website to practice for the DMV exam, start right here with DMV Practice Test, a good tool to help you increase your passing score. You can practice here on our website or install our applications, we are available on App Store and Google Play.