1.

If your license has been recently lost or stolen, you will need to replace it as soon as possible. Without a valid license, you will not be able to drive legally in your state or present a valid form of identification when necessary. The two most common methods of replacing your lost or stolen license are visiting your local licensing location in person or applying for a replacement online. Under certain circumstances, you may also be able to replace your license or ID by mail. However, the fastest and most efficient way to replace your driving credential is online. To learn how to replace your license online, you can refer to our helpful drivers license guide. In addition to helping you through the replacement process, our guide will also teach you how to renew and change the name or address on your license.

2. By Mail

Most states offer a mail-in application option to residents who have lost their license while out of the state. In most cases, military service members stationed outside of the state will also be able to apply for a replacement by mail. To apply, you will need to mail in a primary and secondary proof of identification, such as a birth certificate, valid U.S. passport, Social Security card or W-2 form. You will also need to send proof of a residential address such as a deed, voter registration card or utility bill. Depending on your state, you will be required to provide any combination of the aforementioned documents, in addition to other documents and information. You will also need to keep in mind that it may take several weeks to obtain your replacement license, as mail can often be delayed or unreliable.

3. In Person at a DMV Office

Finally, you can replace your lost or stolen license at your local DMV or licensing office. You will be required to bring all the documents previously mentioned as proof of identification and residency. If you are uncomfortable mailing these important documents to the DMV, then an in-person visit is more secure. However, you may need to reschedule an appointment if you forget your passport, citizenship certificate, car title or any other documents that you are using as proof of identification or residency. Additionally, if you make any mistakes on your form, you will not be able to receive your replacement license or ID the same day you apply for it at the DMV.


When Washington DC licensed drivers have a stolen, damaged or lost drivers license, the state will issue a duplicate copy of their existing driving credentials. A Washington DC replacement drivers license will be issued to you as long as you have already been issued a driving license in the District of Columbia, whether it is a full license with conditions or a provisional license, and said credential is in good standing. If details on your license are obsolete, then you should also apply for a replacement credential.

You can apply for your new drivers license copy online, by mail or at a DC DMV service center in person. Depending on the method, you may need to furnish certain information or supply specific documents to receive your new card. Keep reading the sections detailed below to learn the answer to this question as well as additional information on how to replace drivers license credentials as quickly and easily as possible.

When is a replacement drivers license required in Washington?

As soon as you realize you have a lost drivers license, you should plan to apply for a new one immediately. Additionally, if you think someone has stolen your license you should file for a DC copy of drivers license documentation and report the theft to the DMV as soon as you can. This may deter consequences of a thief using your credentials as his or her own and incurring violations on your driving record. You must also get a new license if your credentials become physically damaged rendering the text or photo indecipherable because a damaged card is considered unusable.

You will need to replace drivers license cards if it does not have your current legal name. Drivers who change their name after marriage, divorce or court orders will also need to update their record and apply for a name change on a drivers license card. You should also update your address after you move.

How to Replace Your Drivers License Online in Washington DC

Getting a drivers license copy online is the fastest and most convenient method. If you are wondering, “Where can I get a copy of my drivers license if I am out of state?” then the online method may be your best option. You will need a credit card to pay the drivers license replacement fees, and you must have a valid DC DMV REAL ID driver license full license with conditions, a Limited Purpose ID driver license, a full license with conditions or a provisional license, which has a star printed in the upper right corner. The online application will require your unique drivers license number. If you have lost your card, then you can find this number on DC DMV receipts or other driver records you might have on file.

Note: The online system does not allow for changes to be made to the cardholder’s name. For this service, you must first change your name on your Social Security card and then changes can be made to your license in person only at a DMV service center.

How to Replace Your Drivers License by Mail in Washington DC

Replacing drivers license credentials by mail requires your to collect the certain documents to submit to the DMV. To assist you in replacing a lost drivers license, the DC DMV provides an interactive document verification guide online to help you choose the correct documents for license replacement. You must always provide original documents and make sure that the type of license you are replacing matches the ones listed in the section above. Acceptable documents deemed eligible by the DMV to replace lost drivers license credentials include the following:

  • A U.S. birth certificate or birth certificate card filed with the State Office of Vital Statistics
  • A U.S. passport that has not expired
  • A Consular Report of Birth Abroad (CRBA)
  • A Certificate of Naturalization
  • A Permanent Resident Card that has not expired.

You must submit one of the listed documents to the DMV along with your application form. Mail your Washington DC duplicate drivers license application to the DC Department of Motor Vehicles Driver Services Administration in DC.

How to Replace Your Drivers License in Person in Washington DC

In order to get copy of drivers license documentation if you have not already obtained a DC DMV REAL ID or Limited Purpose driver license is to visit a DC DMV service center in person. To get a DMV duplicate license in person, bring all required documents and your payment method to your nearest DC DMV service location. Additional documents will be required to prove your identity and verify your Social Security Number. You also must provide two documents that prove your current DC residency. The DC DMV can provide you with an extensive list of acceptable documents for each purpose.

Washington DC Drivers License Replacement Fees

The cost of a replacement drivers license in Washington DC varies. If you chose to complete a drivers license renewal instead of a duplicate with the same expiration date, then your cost may be more. For duplicate drivers license fee payments, most DC DMV locations accept cash, check, money order or Visa and MasterCard credit cards. The DMV accepts major credit cards, although contact your local DMV office first to verify the payment options. Some locations do not accept cash. The cost of duplicate drivers license without a renewal is $20.

Note: Before you visit a DMV service center to replace drivers license documentation, any outstanding debts to the DC government must be paid in full, including outstanding tickets and dishonored checks. Additionally, you cannot obtain a replacement copy if any child support accounts are unpaid.

Last updated on Wednesday, December 5 2018.

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