Frequently Asked Questions

Am I required to take a motorcycle training course?
A specially designed Motorcycle Safety Course is obligatory for drivers who wish to get their motorbike license in Rhode Island.

Thedrivers ed in Rhode Island is provided by the Community College of Rhode Island (CCRI), which offers a comprehensive course of both lectures and riding, plus training motorcycles. As there is no separate motorcycle manual, you may wish to study Rhode Island Driver s Manual for basic preparation.

The driving course will expect that you:

  • Complete a 16.5-hour training program which consists of:
  • Six and a half hour lecture.
  • Two five-hour riding ranges.
  • Carry a bike helmet to classes.
  • Carry weather-appropriate clothes to classes.

CCRI will appoint you a riding coach. More info on class schedule, methods and payment is available at CCRI registration point.

For more information: How to Apply for a Motorcycle License in Rhode Island

Am I required to wear a helmet while riding a motorcycle?
Wearing a helmet is a necessary safety requirement for motorbikes in Rhode Island.

You will also need to carry a helmet to classes when you attend the motorcycle driving course to get your bike license.

The Community College of Rhode Island (CCRI) can give you more details on other equipment necessary to pass the bike drivers course.

When supplying your helmet, think of the specific regulations that you need to adhere to: it needs to be DOT certified and exceed Federal Motor Vehicle Safety Standard 218 (FMVSS 218).

For more information: How to Apply for a Motorcycle License in Rhode Island

Can I renew my commercial drivers license online?
In Rhode Island, you cannot renew yourcommercial driving licenseonline, as it requires personal photo identification.

The burden of responsibility that comes when one holds a license to drive commercial vehicles requires you to visit the main DMV office in Cranston, in person to apply for a CDL that needs to be renewed.

For more information: How to Renew Commercial Driver s License (CDL) in Rhode Island

Can I take the DMV written test online?
DMV driving tests cannot be taken online. To take the test you need to come in person in a nearby Rhode Island DMV office and take it on a computer.

Only when you successfully pass the written drivers test you can go on to apply for the driving permit.

For more information: DMV Practice Tests Get Your Permit the First Time

Can I use my state CDL anywhere in the United States?
Holders of commercial drivers license are recorded in a singular computerized system on federal level. Therefore, you must hold only one license or serious penalty fees ensue.

However, usage of the CDL license between states depends on the type issued and on guidelines each state has on:

  • Definitions for commercial motor vehicles (CMV).
  • Standards for endorsements.
  • Medical requirements.
  • Intrastate or interstate commerce requirements.

If you decide to use the CDL license out of the state, it is best to check at nearby DMV locations on the transfer, upgrade or added endorsements requirements you need to get to comply with traffic regulations for CDL license owners.

For more information: Rhode Island Commercial Driver s License Application

Do I need a motorcycle license to ride a scooter or moped?
If you decide to drive a smaller motor vehicle such as a moped or a scooter, owning a driving license is not mandatory in Rhode Island. The requirement for going through a new vehicle registration procedure remains though.

It is advisable to have in mind the definitions for a moped or a scooter so that you can check your vehicle against them and make sure not to drive an unauthorized vehicle. Both motor vehicles are:

  • Two-wheeled.
  • With maximum 50cc capacity.
  • Cannot exceed 30 mph.

If you wonder about the specific requirements for a motorized bike, a trike or a customized bike, you may want to check if the particular one needs to go under the procedure for motorcycle registration at a nearby DMV location.

For more information: How to Apply for a Motorcycle License in Rhode Island

 

Do I need to take a drivers ed course?
If you are state resident and you are applying for a limited instruction permit, you need to have completed 33 hours of drivers education. Non-resident drivers need to get their courseapproved by the Community College of Rhode Island (CCRI).Drivers ed is not required if you are applying for instruction permit.

For more information: Learner s Permit for Beginner Drivers in Rhode Island

How can I get a veteran designation on my ID card?
One of the military benefits you can obtain from DMV is a veteran designation. You can get this on your identification card regardless of the fact that you already have veteran plates.

It will not be an additional financial burden as it is free of charge.

The only thing that needs to be done is submitting a Veteran Designation Form which needs to be signed off by your officer in charge.

In support, you also need to present your DD 214 discharge form with honorable credentials to qualify for the designation.

For more information: Rhode Island Veteran Benefits

How do I apply for a commercial drivers license?
The application for a commercial drivers license in Rhode Island entails that you are at least 21 years old, or 18 years old for an intrastate license. The only DMV address where you can go to apply for a CDL is the Cranston location.

If you are an experienced driver and you wish to drive commercial vehicles, you need to:

  • Bring your regular Rhode Island drivers license, which you have held for at least two years.
  • Bring your Social Security Card.
  • Complete the application for commercial driver s license.
  • Pass both CDL written and skills tests.
  • Obtain CDL instruction permit.
  • Provide a valid medical card or certificate.
  • Pay the $11.50 fee.

A chauffer application is separate. You may wish to locate a DMV to check specifics on how to apply as chauffer.

For more information: Rhode Island Commercial Driver s License Application

How do I apply for a learner’s permit?
The steps you need to take to get a permit for driving depend on your age and residency.The state of Rhode Island issues two types of learners permit for new drivers, which include:

  • Limited instruction permit
  • Instruction permit

To get alimited instruction permit,beginner drivers who are state residents need to be between 16 and 18 years old. When you submit the required documents and pay the driving permit fees in your nearest DMV location office, you must be accompanied by a parent or a legal guardian who need to sign the application.

An instruction permit is issued to drivers over 18 who do not own a drivers license or whose license has been expired for more than 5 years. Drivers ed is not required.

For more information: Learner s Permit for Beginner Drivers in Rhode Island

How do I apply for a motorcycle license?
After you successfully go through a motorcycle driving course, getting a motorcycle license in Rhode Island starts with locating a DMV office and visitingit in person.

You will then need to obtain all necessary documents, submit an application, pass all tests and pay the fees. You will initially receive your motorcycle permit which is valid for 18 months. After a period of 30 days a full motorcycle driving license will be issued to you.

Unless you provide Minor Release Agreement Form from your parents,you must be over 18 to enroll into the procedure to get your motorcycle license.

A motorcycle license, which has been issued by another state, can be verified and converted into a valid Rhode Island drivers license.

For more information: How to Apply for a Motorcycle License in Rhode Island

How do I get a duplicate ID card?
The procedure for getting a duplicate ID card is very similar to the one that is stipulated for a new ID card issuance. A duplicate ID cardis issued when your current one has been lost, stolen or destroyed. Applicants for duplicate ID cards will need to submit all required documents at a DMV office. The application will need to include the following supporting documentation:

  • ID Application form/LI-1 form
  • A certified birth certificate/Proof of Identity Document
  • Social Security Card
  • Proof of residency
  • $26.50 fee

The Rhode Island Application for License, Identification Card and Permit Form gives a specific list of valid documents acceptable for the ID card replacement. A note to have in mind in terms of identity proof is that your tax identification number cannot be considered as such.

Section E of the form refers to data important for a lost ID card. The service is provided for free to citizens aged 59 or more.

For more information: Replace a Lost, Stolen, or Mutilated Rhode Island Driver s License or ID Card

How do I renew my driving permit?
Learners permit for starting drivers is valid for one year or until applicants turn 18.

Renewing your drivers permit requires thatyou submit your application to a local DMV office, in person.

You are expected to bring the current driving permit, a renewal form and your Social Security Card for identification. Rhode Island Driver s Manual offers additional details for renewal of your drivers license.

For more information: Learner s Permit for Beginner Drivers in Rhode Island

How do I renew my ID card?
Identification cards usual validity is five years. In case yours has expired and you want to apply for an ID card renewal you can do so at DMV locations or online.

The all-inclusive application document for ID cards and licenses of the state of Rhode Island will be the basic form that you will need to submit at a DMV office.

Below you may find a list of everything that needs to be enclosed in the application cluster:

  • ID Application form/LI-1 form
  • Proof of identity
  • Your old/expired ID card
  • Supporting documentation for a non-U.S. citizen status verification.
  • Proof of residency
  • $26.50 fee

There is a fee exemption for senior citizens aged over 59.

For more information: How to apply for a Rhode Island Identification Card

How do I renew my medical report for a commercial license?
The required medical certificate in Rhode Island is dated and valid for two years unless the driver s medical condition is such that it requires frequent checks. To renew the medical report for a commercial drivers license, you will need to visit a local RI DMV provide an updated certificate.

In addition, most recent medical regulations for commercial driving license ask certified medical examiners to send secure monthly medical reports to the relevant commercial transport authority.

For more information: Rhode Island Commercial Driver s License Application

How do I renew my motorcycle license?
If you approach the expiry date of your motorbike license, which is usually five years (or two years if you are a senior citizen), you will have to apply for renewal.

You can renew your motorcycle license in Rhode Island either in person or online. To renew in person, you need to be a Rhode Island resident and prepare and submit the following documents to the DMV location convenient for you:

  • Identification document
  • Current motorcycle license
  • Renewal form
  • $26.50(or $30 with vanity) renewal fee
  • Written knowledge test or a road test certificate (if the license has been expired for more than three years)

DMV will firstly issue a temporary permit, so that you can continue driving uninterrupted for the first 60 days. When the regular motorcycle license is finally processedit will be mailed to the address you have provided.

Rhode Island DMV offers online renewals which you can process with a credit card.

For more information: How to Renew/Replace a Motorcycle License in Rhode Island

How does a military member obtain a motorcycle license?
The same basic requirementsas for regular applicants are valid for military persons who wish to obtain a motorcycle license in Rhode Island. They need to go through the essential course and skills tests.

If you wish to check benefits that arise from military association leverage you are encouraged to check at a nearby DMV address.

Some advantages come out from the attributions that are associated with regular driving license. DMV Rhode Island can provide a Veteran Designation Form free of charge. There is an option of renewing motorcycle license online which can make the procedure easier for people abroad. Military persons who hold a CDL license can get a CDL Military Skills Waiver which allows them to opt out of the skills test.

For more information: Rhode Island Motorcycle Drivers

How long do I need my learners permit before I can get my drivers license?
Once you have held the driving permit for a minimum of six months, you can apply for a limited provisional license. You must stay away of traffic violations during that period.

When you turn 17, and provided you have held the limited provisional license for at least 12 months, you are eligible to apply for a full operator sdrivers license.

For more information: Learner s Permit for Beginner Drivers in Rhode Island

How long will it take to get my new ID card?
ID card processing services may vary and cannot be precisely planned upfront.

To be well prepared and sure you will obtain the identification cardon time, please get in touch with DMV offices to see the frequency that is usual for your location.

For more information: Rhode Island DMV Office Contact Information

How often do I need to renew my CDL license?
Your CDL license renewal period depends on your age and are as follows:

  • If you are under 70, you need to renew your CDL license every five years.
  • If you are over 70, you need to renew your commercial driving license every two years.

Please note that CDL licenses expired for more than one year cannot be renewed. If you fail to renew on time, you will need to go through all written drivers exams, a road test and obtain a commercial driver’s permit beforehand.

To renew a CDL license, you need to apply in person at a DMV Cranston office, which will usually send out a reminder.Upon applying, you will immediately be issued a temporary CDL license valid for 60 days, and the actual license will be mailed to you.

For more information: How to Renew Commercial Driver s License (CDL) in Rhode Island

If I’m out of state and lost my ID, how can I get a new one?
If you live abroad for work or study and cannot get back to the country, DMV can make life simpler for you and provide the service for getting an ID card via mail. There are three key steps you will need to take in order to get a duplicate ID card:

  1. Prepare a notarized duplicate-request affidavit
  2. Obtain a self-addressed stamped envelope
  3. Prepare a check or money order for $26.50 made payable to DMV

When you go through the procedure via mail, it is advisable that you call DMV beforehand and get proper instructions for steps and fees as those may vary.

The duplicate identification card will be mailed to you on your designated address.

For more information: Replace a Lost, Stolen, or Mutilated Rhode Island Driver s License or ID Card

Is there a minimum age I have to be to get a commercial drivers license?
The application for a commercial drivers license entails that you are at least 21 years old.

If you wish to drive intrastate only, you may apply for CDL when you are 18 years old.

In both cases, you will first be issued a CDL instruction permit after you pass the written exam.

For more information: Rhode Island Commercial Driver s License Application

What are the age restrictions to ride a motorcycle?
As the crucial prerequisite for getting a motorcycle license is Rhode Island is ownership of a drivers license, you must be at least 16.5 years old to ride a motorcycle.

This restriction takes into account the sixmonths driving experience necessary to proceed from a learners permit to a provisional drivers license.

Make sure that if you are under the age of 18, you complete and submit the Minor Release Agreement Form, which will enable you to enroll into the motorcycle classes as minor.

For more information: Rhode Island Motorcycle Drivers

What are the available commercial license endorsements?
Endorsements to obtain a commercial drivers license depend on the type of CDL license you will be applying for (CDL class A, CDL class B and CDL class C) and all require examinations. School bus drivers are also required to take specific skills test.

Below is a list of all available CDL endorsements:

  • CDL H endorsements (for hazardous materials)
  • CDL P endorsements (for passengers)
  • CDL S endorsements (for school buses)
  • CDL N endorsements (for tank vehicles)
  • CDL X endorsements (for hazmat/tank vehicle combination)
  • CDL T endorsements (for double/triple trailers)

You are advised to check for more on CDL endorsements in the Commercial Driver s License Manual of Rhode Island.

For more information: Rhode Island Commercial Driver s License Application

What are the fees associated with an ID card?
Fees that will be charged when DMV provides its service to you will depend on the type of update you wish to do on your identification card and on your age. The set fees are as follows:

  • First issuance of ID card: $26.50
  • DuplicateID card: $26.50
  • Renew expired ID card: $26.50
  • Update ID card: $6.50

There is an age exemption of all costs for citizens aged 59 or more.

As fees may vary due to state surcharges, it is advisable that you locate a DMV and check the most recent fee in advance. A handy option at DMV locations is credit card payment option.

For more information: How to apply for a Rhode Island Identification Card

What are the learners permit restrictions during my first year?
Supervision by a holder of a fulldrivers license is required when you obtain thedriving permit. The experienced driver must be:

  • At least 21 years old.
  • In possession of a drivers license for a minimum of 5 years.
  • Sitting beside you at all times to assist in emergency cases.

The adult driver who is supervising you while you keep your learners permit is responsible for any traffic violations you may commit during the first year.

For more information: Learner s Permit for Beginner Drivers in Rhode Island

What are the medical certifications required to obtain a CDL?
In order to obtain a commercial driving license, drivers need to show special physical qualifications and have a strong medical record. Failure to provide the required certificates will prevent you from being issued a CDL license. There are two types of medical requirements, which are both necessary for CDL application:

  • Medical examiner s certificate
  • Self-certificate

Unless exempted (when driving government vehicles in official capacity), you must present a medical examiner s certificate issued by a licensed examiner to DMV within 15 days of issuance. A list of examiners certified when you apply for a CDL can be found here.

You must also self-certify that you can drive under the following four categories:

  • Interstate commerce excepted CDL license holder
  • Interstate commerce non-excepted CDL license holder
  • Intrastate commerce excepted CDL license holder
  • Intrastate commerce non-excepted CDL license holder

Interstate and Intrastate non-excepted CDL license holders will be required to present a current valid medical card to get a commercial learner’s permit (CLP).

For more information: Rhode Island Commercial Driver s License Application

What are the penalties for getting a traffic ticket with a driver’s permit?
Drivers who own a learners permit can be evaluated more strictly, apart from being put under similar traffic fines as for holders of a regular drivers license.Beginner drivers need to be more careful and withhold of executing violations in the trial period.

Traffic violations may be the cause of extension of their learners permit period and they will not be able to get their full operator drivers license. Age-related law restrictions may apply and parent involvement may be crucial.

More information: Get a Rhode Island Traffic Ticket Lawyer to Fight Your Ticket

What are the requirements to operate a three-wheel motorcycle?
Definitions and standards for three-wheel motorcycles may highly vary and can depend on the class and the power of the vehicle.

Therefore, the best option is to locate a DMV and check the specific requirements for the motorcycle endorsement you need to get. Further steps you need to undertake will depend on the classification of the motorcycle.

For more information: Rhode Island Motorcycle Drivers

What documents do I need to get a learner’s permit?
The Rhode Island DMV requires original documents to be attached to your learners permit application. Fees may vary and depend on the type of permit:

  • Limited instruction permit fee: $11.50
  • Instruction permit fee: $6.50

Drivers permit application needs to go along with your birth certificate or another ID proof, a social security card, a vision test and a proof of residency. In case your last name differs from that of your parent or guardian, the application must also be notarized. Non-resident drivers under 18 need to pass a knowledge exam test.

For more information: Learner s Permit for Beginner Drivers in Rhode Island

What documents do I need to get a motorcycle license?
Getting a motorcycle driving license in Rhode Island will take you through two sub-stages: the first one presumes that you get a temporary motorcycle permit, and the second one takes you to a full motorcycle license. Below is a list of the documents you will need to have prepared for each sub-stage:

  • Motorcycle permit:
  • Application form (Ll-1)
  • Certificate of completion from the RI Motorcycle Safety Course obtained at CCRI
    • Current valid RI license
  • Motorcycle license:
  • Application form (LI-1)
  • Current license and motorcycle permit valid for at least 30 days

The motorcycle license fee is $26.50. If you do not hold a valid Rhode Islanddrivers license you can check the things you need to do to get one here.

If you need to travel out of state the DMV will issue a motorcycle endorsement statement marked as H restriction.

For more information: How to Apply for a Motorcycle License in Rhode Island

What exams do I need to pass to get a motorcycle license?
After finishing themotorcycle safety course designed by the Community College of Rhode Island (CCRI) as mandatory driving ed, motorcycle license students need to pass:

  • A written exam at the second lecture.
  • A riding skills test at the second driving range session.

If it happens that you fail the written knowledge exam, you will need to reschedule it with CCRI for a later available date. If you do not succeed at the riding skills test, you may need to enroll in the complete safety program again.

To avoid this, the ridingcoach who will be appointed to you when you take the motorcycle coursewill be of best help when you prepare for the test. He or she will alsotrackand advise you on your individual progress. Additional resource beneficial for preparation is the Rhode Island Driver s Manual. Practice tests are a great place to start.

For more information: How to Apply for a Motorcycle License in Rhode Island

What happens to my commercial driver license if I am convicted of a DUI?
DUI is a very serious offence in Rhode Island and will have significant consequences on your driving record. If you are convicted of DWI, your drivers license can be suspended or revoked. The length and the type of the CDL license suspension depend on the gravity of the violation. Restrictions for alcohol consumption in RI are a blood alcohol content (BAC) of 0.04 percent.

If you intend to continue using a commercial drivers license, you will need to follow all the required steps toreinstate your suspended license.

For more information: Suspended License Information for Rhode Island

What is an ID card?
An ID card is an official state document which does not carry the legal power of a drivers license intended to prove driving skills, but may principally serve as proof of:

  • Age.
  • Residence.
  • Identity.

In the above sense, a driving license and an ID cards can be considered equivalent. Nonetheless, certain tests and steps are not necessary to be taken for the ID cards. The procedure and the documentation is less burdensome.

For more information: How to apply for a Rhode Island Identification Card

What is the passing score for a written test?
Rhode Island drivers test consists of 25 questions. In order to get over a passing score, you must correctly answer 80 percent of the questions, or 20 out of 25 of the drivers examquestions.

For more information: DMV Practice Tests Get Your Permit the First Time

What test do I need to take for my learners permit?
New applicants who want to get their learning permit are required to take the written knowledge test. The written drivers test is computerized and contains 90 questions.

It can take up to 30 minutes to complete it in full and can be made available in other languages upon request.

A useful place to prepare for passing the drivers examis DMVs Drivers Manual. The fee required is $11.50.As fees may vary, before applying for the driving test, check with your closest DMV location office.

For more information: Learner s Permit for Beginner Drivers in Rhode Island

What tests do I have to take to obtain a CDL?
Drivers who wish to apply for a CDL license need to do so in the office in Cranston. Taking all necessary tests is lengthy and needs to be done sequentially.

Not each drivers test can be taken on the same day, so you are encouraged to plan your time accordingly. Fees may vary, so please check at DMV locations for an accurate updated fee.

There are three basic tests that are required to pass in order to get a commercial driving license. These tests include:

  • Electronic/manual knowledge tests
  • Road tests
  • Background checks for commercial drivers carrying hazardous materials endorsement on their CDL license

More details on times and schedules for taking the drivers test necessary for obtaining commercial drivers license are available in the Commercial Driver s License Manual of Rhode Island.

For more information: Rhode Island Commercial Driver s License Application

When does my ID card expire?
The expiration date of your ID card is five years from the date of issuance.

To check for any exceptions that may be due to age or other restrictions you are advised to contact DMV at a convenient location and ask for the status of a Rhode Island expired ID card.

For more information: How to apply for a Rhode Island Identification Card

Where can I obtain an ID card?
To get a new ID card you will need to go to an adjacent DMV office and submit the application in person.

Many services that Rhode Island DMV provides for its citizens are available online. At the moment, only drivers license can be renewed online.

To check future availability of the ID cardonline service you may wish to get in touch with your closest DMV office.

For more information: How to apply for a Rhode Island Identification Card

Who can sign for my permit or license if I am under 18?
When you are getting your drivers permit in Rhode Island, persons who are permitted toaccompany you and sign the driving permit application may include:

  • Your parent
  • A legal guardian
  • A licensed foster parent
  • An adult spouse

The legal guardian and the foster parent need to identify and verify their legal status.

For more information: Learner s Permit for Beginner Drivers in Rhode Island