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How to Apply for a New Driver's License in Delaware

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Delaware residents require an in-state driving license in order to legally operate a motor vehicle. First-time drivers must initially apply for an instruction permit, also referred to a learners permit, prior to getting a license to drive. Teen drivers, 16 and 17 years of age, are subject to additional requirements for supervised driving under the state's Graduated Driver License program.

Did you know? Taking our Delaware learners permit practice test will give you a preview of the types of questions that will appear on the live DMV test.

How to Apply for a Delaware Driver's License:

  • Visit a Delaware DMV location.
  • Provide the required documentation.
  • Relinquish your learners permit or out-of-state driver's license.
  • Pass the road test, if applicable.
  • Pay the driving license fee.

Get all of the details on how to get a drivers license in Delaware by reading through the information presented below.

Types of Drivers Licenses in Delaware

Delaware DMV drivers licenses are available to applicants who meet the requirements under the class of licensure they seek.

  • Operator's license, Class D - drivers license issued to operators of passenger cars and trucks not exceeding GVWR of 26,000 pounds, trailer included.
  • Commercial drivers license, Classes A, B, and C - issued to operators of commercial motor vehicles.

Drivers license holders 18 years of age and older who meet the required qualifications can apply for a motorcycle endorsement to add to their existing drivers license card.

First-Time Driver (Under 18) in Delaware

New drivers licenses applicants younger than 18 years of age will have to complete the steps of the Graduated Drivers License program, beginning with a learners permit. Upon meeting the requirements and following the restrictions of the level one learners permit, the minor driver will then qualify for a Class D operator's driving license beginning at 17 years of age.

For more information, visit our Learner's Permit page.

Delaware New Drivers (Over 18)

First-time driving license applicants in Connecticut must first obtain a learning permit, regardless of age. Adults qualify for a CT license to drive 10 days after obtaining their learning permit.

DE Driver's Study Guide and Driver's Practice Test

Adult new drivers license applicants must have completed a knowledge test to earn their driving permit. To prepare for the written drivers test, learners should first, study the Delaware Driver Manual and second, take a sample knowledge test. Our DMV driving practice test contains questions similar to those featured on the real Delaware knowledge test.

How to Apply for Drivers Licenses in DE

Applying for a drivers license in Delaware involves providing the required identification documents in addition to meeting the age and testing qualifications. Driving license applicants must present accepted documents that show the following:

  • Proof of full name and date of birth .
  • Proof of Social Security Number.
  • Proof of Delaware residency.
  • Proof of legal presence in the United States (for non-US citizens).

DE Drivers License Eligibility Requirements

Applicants getting drivers licenses in Delaware are required to be at least 17 years of age. Regardless of age, first-time drivers must have a learners permit before applying for a license to drive. First-time drivers license applicants younger than 18 years of age must fulfill the requirements of the Graduated Driver License program including having to hold a learners permit for at least 12 months. New drivers license applicants who are at least 18 years of age can apply for an operator's license after 10 days of holding a permit for driving.

CT Written/Driving Test

First-time drivers must pass the knowledge exam to obtain a DE permit for driving in addition to meeting the age, identification and residency requirements. To fully prepare to pass your written drivers test, you must participate in a sample test. Our online practice driving test is based upon questions you will find on the live Delaware knowledge test.

DE Driving Test

The Delaware drivers license test may be taken after successfully completing the written exam. DMV drivers tests measures an applicant's ability to safely operate a car while performing routine driving activities. During the approximately 30-minute test, a driving examiner will ask you to perform operations such as the following:

  • Parallel park.
  • Perform a three-point turn.
  • Pass a vehicle/be passed by a vehicle.
  • Merge with traffic.

The motor vehicle you provide for your driving test must have at least liability car insurance and be able to pass the safety inspection performed by the driving examiner.

New Delaware Resident

Drivers new to Delaware who hold a driving license from their previous state of residence must apply for a DE license to drive within 60 days of becoming a bona fide resident. To obtain a Delaware driving license, you must provide the appropriate forms of identification. You must also relinquish your previous license or furnish a current certified copy of your driving record. In most cases, new residents transferring their driving credentials are not required to take the written and road tests, though submitting to a vision screening is mandatory for all applicants.

Along with obtaining an in-state driving license, new residents must also apply for title transfer and vehicle registration within 60 days. Prior to qualifying for registration, your motor vehicle must have at least liability auto coverage and be able to pass a VIN inspection. Vehicles due to be registered in Delaware must pass set emissions and safety standards. Inspections are performed at all four full-service DMV centers in the state.

Replace Driver's License in Delaware

To replace stolen, damaged, or lost drivers licenses, applicants must apply in-person at a DE DMV office. Duplicate drivers licenses may be obtained by drivers who can provide the necessary identification documents. For information about replacement drivers license fees, click here.

Locate a DMV in Delaware

Get contact details on each Delaware DMV office by visiting our DE DMV location page. You will be able to get telephone numbers, hours of operation and also launch driving directions to the location of your choice, directly from the site.