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New drivers licenses cannot be obtained online or by mail. Instead, you must apply for a new license in person at a local DMV. While there, you must pass a vision screening, a written exam and a skills test. To make sure that you are prepared, download our informative online drivers license guide. Our guide contains everything you need to know to complete this application easily and quickly. In it, you will get in-depth details on how to complete other important licensing transactions, such as updating personal information on your license, renewing your license and replacing a lost one.

2. In Person at the DMV

To obtain a new drivers license at the DMV, you must submit identification documents and pass mandatory tests. A birth certificate or passport can verify your name and age, and a utility bill can prove your state residency. Generally, you must pass a written knowledge exam and a road skills test. You must also fill out a drivers license application form and pay the applicable fees. However, you may not know which forms to complete or if you are already eligible to take your exams. Arriving at the DMV unprepared may result in long wait times and potential mistakes, which could mean having to redo the process.


In Minnesota, drivers licenses allow eligible residents to use motor vehicles. A thorough application process is required in order to verify eligibility standards. The DMV license process is used to certify that new drivers safely and effectively operate vehicles. Various types of permits can be applied for. Fees must be paid by new drivers to cover exam and processing costs.

Adult residents must undergo different eligibility verification and application process than teen drivers. Drivers younger than 18 must meet additional requirements established by the state. These stipulations are designed to improve the ability of young drivers on the road. Read the following sections on DMV drivers licenses to discover additional information on applying for permits.

How to Apply for a Drivers License in Minnesota as an Adult (18 or Older)

Minnesota residents age 18 and above are required to present official documents and personal information when applying for licenses. Preparing these items in advance is beneficial to make the process go faster. Additionally, knowing the total fees for the desired permit allows applicants to collect the money required beforehand.

Driving eligibility standards determine the identity, residency and citizenship status qualifications for MN drivers. Verifying documents must be presented when applying for driving privileges. The following items meet eligibility requirements for permits in the state.

  1. Documents proving Social Security Number (SSN), such as:
    • Social Security Card
    • W-2
    • 1099 form
    • Pay stub stating SSN
  2. Documents proving citizenship, such as:
    • U.S. Passport
    • Permanent Resident Card
    • Birth Certificate
    • Foreign passport with the proper endorsement
    • Employment authorization form
    • Certificate of Citizenship
    • Certificate of Naturalization
  3. Documents proving residency, such as:
    • Current license, DMV driving permit or ID card
    • Letter stating the applicant’s name and residential address
    • Mail from schools
    • Recent government-issued mail
    • Mortgage documents

Steps to Get a New Drivers License in Minnesota as an Adult (18 or Older)

Once eligibility is determined, new drivers license application steps may begin. The process of obtaining a permit is completed in person at a certified licensing agency. While visiting the office, personal information and official documents are presented for review. Next, an application for new permits can be filled out at the office.

When this information is processed, the following exams are administered:

Applicants must pass all of the aforementioned tests to receive a license. Drivers age 18 to 21 are granted provisional permits, while drivers 21 and older are granted unrestricted permits. All required fees can be paid at the licensing office.

Getting a Minnesota Drivers License as a New Resident

Understanding how to get a drivers license is necessary for new MN residents. An updated permit is required within 60 days of establishing residency. To find where to get a drivers license, applicants should locate the nearest licensing office to their domicile. When visiting the office, drivers must:

  • Complete a vision exam.
  • Present Social Security Number verification.
  • Present previously held license.
  • Provide identification and residency verification.
  • Complete a knowledge and driving test, if required.
  • Take a license photo.
  • Pay all licensing fees.

When all documents and fees are successfully submitted and approved, a new license is granted.

How to Apply for a Drivers License in Minnesota as a Teen (Younger Than 18)

Understanding drivers license information is an important component of obtaining Minnesota driving privileges. With this knowledge, teen drivers can ensure the application process goes as smoothly as possible. Specific license eligibility standards apply to drivers younger than 18. Drivers should ensure each of the following requirements are satisfied before applying for licenses:

  • Applicants must adhere to age, residency and citizenship standards.
  • All required written, vision and/or skills tests must be completed. Parents or legal guardians provide consent when dependents submit applications.

Drivers in Minnesota under age 18 must complete driver education courses to be granted licenses. Adult license holders are not required to take education classes.

Applicants should only take driver classes at verified institutions. 30 hours of instruction on basic driving skills and knowledge is covered, as well as on-road training. During the driver license application process, residents must provide certification of attendance.

Steps to Get a New Drivers License in Minnesota as a Teen (Younger Than 18)

What do you need to get your license as a qualified MN driver? To apply for driving license privileges in Minnesota, teen applicants must complete the graduated permit program. Authorization from parents or legal guardians is necessary. The steps of this process are as follows:

  1. Issuance of an Instructional Permit to a new driver after the required vision and written knowledge exams are passed. Parents or legal guardians must provide consent to applicants. Permits must be held for 6 months. Drivers are only allowed to operate vehicles under supervision.
  2. Issuance of a Provisional License after successfully passing a driving skills exam and holding an Instructional Permit for the allotted time frame. Drivers must complete at least 50 hours of on-road practice, with 15 of these hours done at night. Drivers may advance to an unrestricted MN license upon turning 18 years.
  3. Issuance of a Full Unrestricted License after submitting a license application and paying necessary fees.

Applicants are required to pay all necessary exam and licensing fees for the previously mentioned licenses.

Minnesota Drivers License Costs

The cost of various types of regular licenses in Minnesota are provided below:

  • Class D license: $25.25
  • Provisional license: $16.25
  • Class D Provisional license upgrade for drivers without traffic violations: $21.75
  • Class D Instructional permit: $13.25

Drivers license service centers add an $8 to the cost of each license. Additionally, if you want to obtain an enhanced license, you must add $15 to the base license fee. Unlike a first-time driver license, you can apply for an enhanced license at any time, and this high-security credential can be used for travel purposes and to access federal facilities.

Last updated on Tuesday, December 4 2018.

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