How to Renew a Maryland Driver’s License
In most states, you can renew your drivers license online, by mail or in person. However, be mindful that the online method is only available to certain applicants, depending on their age and citizenship status. During an online license renewal, you will be asked to identify yourself and pay the applicable service fees. To make sure that you are fully prepared to complete the process, you can download our informative online guide. Our guide contains everything you need to know to renew your driving license quickly and easily. In it, you will also get step-by-step details about how to complete other important licensing transactions, such as replacing your license or updating your name or address.
2. By Mail
Certain motorists are eligible to renew their drivers licenses by mail. If your state DMV offers this option, you will be asked to fill out a renewal notice or request form and include certain supporting documentation in your application package. Additionally, you will need to provide an acceptable payment method for the renewal fees, typically a check or money order. All of these documents must be sent to a specified DMV mailing address. It is important to note that this method includes processing times, so it may take longer than others to complete. To minimize your wait time and to avoid delays, be sure to attach the correct paperwork to your renewal form.
3. In Person at the DMV
When renewing your driving license at the DMV, you may be required to pass a vision screening, to retake your photograph and to pay a service fee. Generally, you will need to present your existing license, fill out a drivers license renewal form and assess that your information is still up-to-date on the DMV’s records. Because many drivers are typically unsure of which forms to fill out in order to complete their transactions, delays are common when applying in person. Furthermore, potential mistakes on your application may require you to visit the DMV more than once to successfully renew your license.
You will receive a notice alerting you about completing a drivers license renewal in Maryland before your license is set to expire. This notice will also include information about which methods you are able to use to complete the renewal. For example, you may be able to renew either in-person, at an MVA kiosk, online or by mail depending on your eligibility. In most situations, once you are 21 years of age or older, you will need to complete an MVA license renewal approximately every eight years.
Driving with an expired license is a crime and may lead to serious consequences so it is crucial that you understand what you need to renew a drivers license so that you can complete the renewal efficiently before your license expires. Also, keep in mind that in order to renew a drivers license online or through the other available methods, you must already have a valid license. If your license has been lost, stolen or damaged, you must process a driver license replacement instead of a renewal.
Note: To find out your driver’s license expiration date, locate it on the front of your card.
Eligibility for Drivers License Renewal in Maryland
Whether you renew at a drivers license office, kiosk, by mail or online, you must meet certain eligibility requirements before you can successfully renew your license.
In Maryland, you must have a valid license, and you cannot have a suspended or revoked license. You must also be able to provide any necessary documentation, and you must complete a vision examination if you are over the age of 40.
Instances When You Cannot Renew Your Drivers License in Maryland
If you have the question, “When can I renew my license?” the answer depends on whether you meet the drivers license renewal requirements for completing a renewal. If any of the following are true, you cannot renew your license:
- It has been more than one year after your license expires. At this point you must reapply for a drivers license and take all applicable tests.
- Your license is suspended or revoked. A renewal can only be processed once your driving license privileges are fully restored.
- Your license has been damaged, lost or stolen. In this situation you must complete a driver license replacement.
How Early Can You Renew Your Drivers License in Maryland?
If you are wondering, “How early can you renew your drivers license?” The answer is that it is advisable to renew your license approximately at the time when you receive your mail and email notice from the Maryland Department of Transportation Motor Vehicle Administration (MDOT MVA). If you are renewing via mail, it is recommended that you send in your application at least 15 days prior to your license expiration to allow for processing time.
Non-commercial drivers who are turning 21 years of age can complete their Maryland drivers license renewal up to seven days before their 21st birthday.
Maryland BMV License Renewal Options
In Maryland, there are a few different options regarding where to renew a drivers license and the options you get to choose from vary depending on what your renewal notice states. Depending on your age and whether you have the appropriate documentation on file with the MVA, you may be able to choose between renewing in-person, at an MVA kiosk, online or by mail.
How to Renew Your Drivers License Online
You can renew a drivers license online as long as your renewal notice states that you are eligible. This method is highly recommended as it significantly cuts back on wait times at MVA locations.
If you are eligible to renew online, you can complete the renewal before your license expires or within a year from the expiration date. To process the online renewal, you must do the following:
- Provide necessary information, such as contact information, drivers license number, date of birth and the last four digits of your Social Security number.
- Pay the driving license renewal fee.
- View and print your temporary license.
If you are eligible to renew your Maryland driving license online, you are eligible to renew at an MDOT MVA self-serve kiosk, as well. These kiosks are found at Maryland MVA drivers license locations and can easily be used by following the instructions on the screen.
How to Renew Your Drivers License by Mail
If you are wondering, “Where can I renew my drivers license?” another method that can be used if you are eligible is a renewal by mail. If you received a “renewal by mail” notice then you must complete your renewal via mail instead of utilizing other methods, and it is advised that you submit your application at least 15 days before your license expires. However, if you find any errors in your information, you may complete your renewal in person.
The process for how to renew a drivers license by mail includes a few different steps. These include doing the following:
- Complete the drivers license renewal form application that was sent to you along with your notice.
- Have your doctor complete and sign the “vision certification” portion of your renewal form if you are over the age of 40.
- Mail in the renewal form with the applicable fee.
Once your application has been received and processed, your new license will be mailed to the address that you provided on your mail-in renewal application.
How to Renew Your Drivers License in Person
If you are younger than 40 years of age and eligible for an MVA license renewal either online, at a kiosk or via mail, then you are not eligible to renew in-person except in certain situations. Keeping the in-person renewals for those who are ineligible for other methods and those who are age 40 or older helps to improve the customer service and improve wait times at the MVA locations.
The steps you must follow to complete an in-person renewal includes the following:
- Visit your local MVA office.
- Provide appropriate documentation.
- Pass a vision exam, if applicable.
- Pay the driving license renewal fee.
Military & Out of State Renewal in Maryland
Members of the U.S. military and their dependents have 30 days after returning to Maryland, retiring or being discharged from the military to complete a license renewal. This means that their expired drivers license is still valid for that 30-day period.
If you are a Maryland resident but temporarily residing out-of-state, you may either process your renewal online or via mail if you are eligible. Otherwise, you may request a temporary drivers license.
Maryland REAL ID Drivers License Renewal
If you wish to complete an MVA license renewal and receive a license that is REAL ID-compliant, you must provide the following documents in-person:
- One proof of age and identity document: An original or certified copy of your U.S. Birth Certificate or a valid, unexpired U.S. passport.
- One proof of Social Security number: An original Social Security card, W-2 form or an SSA-1099 – must display your full name and Social Security number.
- Two proofs of Maryland residency: Insurance card, utility bill, bank statement or mail from a Federal, State or Local government agency.
If you are an existing Maryland resident and you have already submitted the appropriate documentation, you may not be required to resubmit the documents upon your next renewal. To confirm, contact your local MVA office.
Maryland Drivers License Renewal Fees
Knowing how much to renew a drivers license for in regards to how long the license lasts and how much the fee is can be very beneficial. The price for a renewal is approximately $6.00 per year and can be purchased for the following durations:
- 5-Year License: $30.00
- 6-Year License: $36.00
- 7-Year License: $42.00
- 8-Year License: $48.00