A Comprehensive Guide to Virginia Driver's Licenses
Virginia Department of Motor Vehicles
Virginia offers a detailed process for individuals looking to obtain a driver's license. The Virginia Department of Motor Vehicles (DMV) is the governing body that oversees the issuance of driver's licenses in the state. This guide aims to provide you with all the information you need to navigate the Virginia DMV system efficiently.
You must be at least 16 years and three months old to apply for a driver's license in Virginia.
REAL ID Compliance
Starting May 7, 2025, you will need a REAL ID compliant driver's license to board a domestic flight. Virginia offers REAL ID compliant licenses, so consider opting for one when you apply.
The Application Process
The application process in Virginia consists of three main steps:
Complete any driver training requirements.
Submit the required documents and fee.
Take the relevant tests.
Driver Training Requirements
If you are 18 or older and have never held a license, you must either hold a learner's permit for a minimum of 60 days or complete a state-approved driver education program. For those under 18, a state-approved driver education program and a learner's permit for at least nine months are required.
Document Submission and Fees
Once you've met the driver training requirements, you can apply for a driver’s license at any DMV customer service center. The required documents include proof of identity, legal presence, Virginia residency, and your Social Security number if you have one. The fee for a standard eight-year license is $32.
Types of Tests Required
Depending on your situation, you may need to take a vision screening, a two-part knowledge exam, or a road skills test. The specific tests you need to take will be determined by the DMV.
License Duration and Special Cases
Your Virginia driver's license is generally valid for eight years but will be valid for only five years if you are 75 or older or are required to register as a sex offender. For individuals temporarily authorized to be in the U.S., a "limited duration driver's license" is issued.
Receiving Your License
The DMV will mail your license to your address on file. Make sure to update your address if you have moved recently.
Juvenile Licensing Ceremony
If you are under 18, you may be required to attend a court licensing ceremony to receive your license.
You can voluntarily request indicators on your license to identify a disability to law enforcement.
Blood Type Designation
You can also choose to display your blood type on your driver's license.
Virginia offers a thorough and detailed system for obtaining a driver's license. With options for REAL ID compliance and a variety of tests and requirements, the state ensures a comprehensive process for all applicants.