1. Get Started With New ID Card Assistance Online

Access online assistance services for help on how to get your new ID as soon as possible. In many states, getting a driver’s license or ID for the first time involves several steps. Therefore, knowing what you will need to do and which documents you will need to present to the DMV is important. Online assistance provides step-by-step instructions on how to apply for a new license or ID card. Take advantage of this service to simplify the process today.

2. By Mail

Some drivers prefer to complete their DMV transactions by mail. Unfortunately, this process is generally much slower than simply dealing with the DMV online. When completing DMV transactions by mail, make sure to set aside enough time for your documents to reach the DMV. If you are on a tight schedule, be mindful that the DMV will need to receive your documents, process your request and mail a response back to you. Double-check all forms, payment methods and applications before mailing them, as any error on your part may delay the process.

3. In Person at a DMV Office

There are DMV transactions that you can only complete in person at a DMV office. These are sometimes lengthy processes, and since DMV lines are often long and slow, preparing beforehand can help ensure your visit is as quick as possible. Knowing which documents you will need and filling out necessary forms before your visit can keep you from wasting your trip. In these cases, online assistance services can help by providing you with all the information you need to make your visit a success.


Residents may want to apply for a California ID card in order to obtain a valid identification document. Overall, this process can be completed through the state’s Department of Motor Vehicles (DMV). The details displayed on identification cards are usually necessary for residents who wish to purchase goods, apply for a job or open a bank account. Furthermore, there is a list of specific DMV ID requirements for applicants to acquire this document.

Unlike applying for a driver’s license, CA DMV ID card applicants do not have to pass any tests. However, residents must submit the proper documents and pay for the applicable fees set forth by the department. California currently issues two types of DMV non driver ID cards: a regular credential and a senior citizen card. Learn more about how and where to submit your ID card application in CA by reading the following sections.

Requirements for an ID Card in California

The first step to applying for an ID in California includes submitting the required documents for an ID card. Moreover, it is important to note that CA does not impose an age requirement for residents to obtain a DMV non driver ID, unlike it is the case for driver’s licenses. Thus, ID cards can be issued to eligible individuals of any age. To do so, applicants only need to pay the appropriate fees and complete the required steps. The following list outlines the necessary DMV ID card paperwork that state residents must submit to the department:

  • A completed application form
  • A document proving an applicant’s Social Security Number (SSN), if applicable
  • Two documents that serve as proof of California residency
  • One document that proves an applicant’s birth date and legal status
  • Previous ID cards, if applicable
  • Payment for the applicable fees

Applicants requesting a new ID card in California have the option to submit their current driver’s license, birth certificate, valid U.S. passport or other documents that verify their date of birth and legal status. Also, if they had a recent change of name, they must provide an additional document proving that name change, such as a court order, certificate of marriage or decree of divorce. Acceptable documents for ID cards that confirm an applicant’s residency in CA include mortgage bills, rental or lease agreements, home utility bills or property tax statements.

Residents who are 62 years of age or older are eligible to apply for a special type of ID card in CA, which is known as a “Senior Identification Card.” The advantage of this document is that it is free of charge. Moreover, senior ID cards are valid for 10 years, whereas standard ID credentials are only valid for a total of six years. Upon meeting their expiration dates, these documents must undergo a renewal procedure that is offered by the California DMV. In addition, residents may need to replace their ID cards if they were lost or stolen.

If you wish to obtain an ID card that also grants you privileges to operate a motor vehicle, you may apply at the DMV for a driver’s license. To do so, you may take practice tests and prepare for the exams associated with acquiring a license to drive. Moreover, you may enroll in driver’s education courses that will improve your driving ability.

Note: Eligible residents who have a physical or mental condition that prevents them from driving safely have the option of exchanging their valid driver’s licenses for ID cards free of charge.

The California ID Card Application Process

Any California resident who is wondering how to get an ID card can finalize this process by visiting a nearby branch and submitting the required paperwork in person. The state DMV offers an online appointment system where applicants can schedule their visits beforehand, thus avoiding long wait times in the office. The list below includes the steps to successfully apply for ID card credentials in CA:

  • Visit a DMV location
  • Complete and submit an original application form
  • Give a thumb print
  • Have your photograph taken
  • Submit proofs of SSN, date of birth, legal status and CA residency, as well as any prior ID cards, if applicable
  • Arrange payment for the applicable ID card costs

After the department processes your DMV ID card application, your new document will be mailed to you within a 60-day period.

California Identification Card Fees

Part of the procedure to obtain a California state issued identification card is paying the applicable costs. The DMV ID fee for a regular identification card has a set amount, but you may qualify to apply for a reduced DMV ID card price in CA if you meet certain criteria. Overall, it is up to governmental or nonprofit organizations to decide whether you meet certain income requirements. After determining your eligibility, they will provide you with a verification form that allows you to request a reduced fee card. If you are applying to obtain a senior citizen ID card, you will not be subject to any costs or fees when requesting your card. As well, no fees apply to drivers with a physical or mental condition who apply to exchange their license to drive for an identification card.

Last updated on Monday, September 24 2018.

Have a Question? Get Quick Online Answers!