DMV.com is a privately owned website.* Privacy

How to Apply for a New Driver's License in North Carolina

Drivers License Online Services Guide

DMV Practice Test Only $14.99

  • Get the Official DMV.com Study Guide.
  • BONUS - FREE access to the Road Signs Practice Test

How to Apply for a New Driver's License in North Carolina

You can apply for a new driver's license at any driver license office in North Carolina. Obtain a North Carolina Driver's Handbook to familiarize with the driving rules and regulations.

NEW DRIVERS AND FIRST TIME APPLICANTS

Following are the basic requirements for applying for a North Carolina driver's license:

  1. Applicants must be 15 years or older.
  2. Any individual under 18 should provide parental consent and must complete the graduated licensing program. For additional details, see Beginner Drivers and/or Learner's Permits for Beginner Drivers.
  3. Everyone must pass the vision, written, road sign recognition and road tests. See Practice Tests and Driver's Handbook for more information on the written examination. Driver education programs can help individuals prepare for their road test.
  4. Applicants must provide two acceptable proofs of identification.
  5. Applicants must provide proof of North Carolina residency and liability insurance.
  6. Applicants must provide the social security card, or letter of ineligibility from the Social Security Administration.
  7. Applicants must provide proof of legal presence in US.

NEW RESIDENTS

North Carolina residents holding a driver's license from another state need to pass all three tests. The road test may be waived at the discretion of the examiner. However, like other applicants, new residents must provide proof of identification, residency, liability insurance on the car, legal presence and social security number.
Non-US citizens residing in North Carolina may apply for a North Carolina driver's license, as long as they can provide proof that they are legally authorized to be in the United States, and meet all the other requirements. Note that a North Carolina driver's license issued to a foreign national will expire no later than the last date on which they are authorized to be in the United States by the U.S. Immigration and Naturalization Service.

FEES

The cost for a North Carolina driver's license is $4 per year.

DURATION AND RENEWAL OF LICENSE

Your license will expire on your birthday depending upon your age at time of
issuance as shown below:
Age at Time of Issuance Duration
18-65 8 years
66 and older 5 years

  • In no event shall a license expire later than the authorization for the

applicant's legal presence in the United States.

LEARNER'S LICENSE

With certain restrictions, an individual can legally drive in North Carolina with a learner's permit. See more information on learner's permits here.

ADDITIONAL INFORMATION

Submitted by kennyyyy16 on 10th Sep 2015

Im 17 turning 18 and wants to

Im 17 turning 18 and wants to know if i didn't take drivers ed can i just get my licences when i turn 18?

Submitted by Lboutwell on 21st Aug 2015

I am 37 years old. I would

I am 37 years old. I would like to know how a person can get a drivers license without a car. No help from family.

Submitted by editor on 30th Aug 2015

I would like to know how a

I would like to know how a person can get a drivers license without a car. No family in state.

Submitted by Shi on 27th Mar 2015

Looking for answers on if

Looking for answers on if license is suspended in VA can I get one in NC now that I live here. It is for a judgement on money owed in an accident. Sngauss@gmail.com

Submitted by Teresa Watts on 24th Sep 2014

I am 20 years old and got a

I am 20 years old and got a NC permit. I want to get a drivers license but have to borrow a car. What do I need to do? Will non owners insurance work? What forms do I need for insurance proof.

Submitted by lebarron447 on 27th Jun 2013

i am an unexperienced driver

i am an unexperienced driver with no car to call my own but my employer wants me to be able to drive. Do i need liability insurance to get my license when he has insurance to cover the vehicle i'll be driving? please reply to lebarron447@gmail.com

Submitted by Sadie8933 on 14th May 2013

Im 17 i dropped out of school

Im 17 i dropped out of school but im going to get my g.e.d. can i get my permit or license?

Submitted by kelly18 on 11th Apr 2013

i recently at 17 had a permit

i recently at 17 had a permit that experied a month before i turned 18 because once you 18 you cant obtain one anymore. But the after i fail 2 classes and they revoaked my permit but it had already experied being that im 18 can i still get my full license?

Submitted by shawneeangel on 1st Apr 2013

Good day to you. I was a NC

Good day to you. I was a NC resident until April 2011, then got an OH drivers license. I needed to take care of my ailing mother, who has since passed away. I am now living back in NC and want to get my NC drivers license. Do I still need to take all the tests again even though it has been less then 2 yrs since I got OH DL and how much do the drivers license cost.

Submitted by Paigekern13 on 15th May 2012

I am 17 and I have my

I am 17 and I have my Virginia drivers license and need to get a NC drivers license ! How do I go about getting that and what test will I take? And what if I am passed my 60 day mark?

Submitted by taylorwalker45 on 13th Apr 2012

I just moved from Texas and

I just moved from Texas and my permit is expired and it's time for my license. Can I go to a NC DMV and get my license?

Submitted by anum.akhter on 29th Mar 2012

I'm 17 and still have my

I'm 17 and still have my permit. I'm supposed to be getting my driver's license soon, what do I need to do and/or bring to be elligible to get one? The directions on this website are unclear to me.

Submitted by nikolasforsthoffer on 27th Mar 2012

I have not gotten a permit

I have not gotten a permit but I am 17 and am about to graduate. Now, I have heard many different stories about this issue so I thought I would ask, when I graduate, do I have to wait til I am 18 to get my full license or am I able to get it as soon as I graduate, even though I am 17? Also, if it is possible, could I be able to get my license before I graduate without having to go through the learner's permit?

Submitted by kaleesalene on 20th Mar 2012

I'm 17, and i haven't lived

I'm 17, and i haven't lived with my parents for almost a year. I live with my boyfriends mom. Does that make her my guardian to sign for me to get my license, or could my grandmother take me to get my license and sign?

Submitted by jimpsen on 16th Feb 2012

1994 moved to ca from nc,i

1994 moved to ca from nc,i got my dl, lived there for 13 years.I came back in 2007 my ca license exp first month of 2008 also ca in 2005 suspended my license for my child support,it is cleared now.I got my first and only DUI in NC on Nov 2008.they said driving without a license and then they put down my NC Dl # from 20 years ago.they do not recognize my Ca dl,but that was the license i got a DUI on but it was suspended.Its been 4 years without having a license,Ca sent a letter to DVM,and cleared my ca license.i have to get a interlock on my car because of a .15..that law came into affect in DEC 2008,what do i do,shouldn't it be under the ca DVM law or NC law,should i go back and renew my dl in ca.i just got a report from ca and everything is OK.please help.

Submitted by louieb on 8th Feb 2012

My license are suspended in

My license are suspended in Va. may I obtain a N.C license now that I'm a resident to n.c..

Submitted by CarolinaLady44 on 1st Apr 2012

NC DMV is linked to several

NC DMV is linked to several states and Virginia is one of them. They will see that your license is suspended. You will need to clear up the issues in Virginia before you can be granted a license in NC. I just finished going through this process myself. Sorry. :(

Submitted by Dayung346 on 7th Feb 2012

I am a foreigner, staying in

I am a foreigner, staying in NC using Visitor's Visa because my children are here for study. What is the documents needed for me to get my Drivers License? Please reply by email.

Submitted by jackinbangkok on 30th Oct 2014

let me know if anyone has

let me know if anyone has answered your question. I have the same issue. Jack

Submitted by licong.lk@gmail.com on 12th Nov 2014

I have the same Question too,

I have the same Question too, Has anyone answered this yet? Thank's LiCong

Submitted by shreekanth m on 30th Mar 2016

I have the same question as

I have the same question as well. Could you please anyone answer it if you know.

Thanks

Shreekanth

Submitted by Sophy Mbeyu on 30th Mar 2016

Am facing the same problem, I

Am facing the same problem, I have an international DL from a foreign country, Would that help me obtain a NC driving license. Was on hold for more than 35 minutes and no one got back to me. Kindly let me know what i need to provide

Submitted by maurice jay on 7th Feb 2012

My license are suspended in

My license are suspended in Va. may I obtain a N.C license now that I'm a resident to n.c..

Submitted by smoochie2882 on 2nd Feb 2012

I'm a new resident to NC and

I'm a new resident to NC and my license is suspended in GA can I still get my NC license? Please email me @ shaylaperkins@Hotmail.com

Submitted by sherrybaby123 on 19th Jan 2012

I have a suspended license in

I have a suspended license in florida, I now live in North Carolina. can I get my license here without clearing my florida suspension?

Submitted by legacy2311 on 25th Nov 2011

QUESTION: As a new resident,

QUESTION: As a new resident, Is it possible to obtain a NORTH CAROLINA drivers license if you are suspended in another state(VIRGINIA)?

please email me at legacy2311@aol.com. Thanks

Submitted by annetteo on 15th Nov 2011

My husband is Active Duty

My husband is Active Duty Army and we are residents of Alaska but he is stationed here in North Carolina. My employer states that I must have a valid NC driver's license. Since we wish to return to Alaska and do not want to give up residency in Alaska how do I get a NC DL with an Alaskan Address? I went to the DMV today and the man at the Fuquay Varina office was extremely rude about it and insisted that it is not possible. However, I have gotten DL's in other states that simply had my Alaska Address on it so I know some states can do it.

Can this be done in North Carolina?

If not, why is this different here than in other states such as Virginia, New Yorn and Washington D.C.?

Submitted by Pareditas81 on 16th Oct 2011

Hello. I have a driving

Hello. I have a driving license issued only with my country I.D and with mi ITIN number. Can I renew my license again with my ITIN number? Please let me know if I can. Thank you so much. I really need it!

Submitted by Manar352 on 15th Oct 2011

I'm in Florida and ill be

I'm in Florida and ill be here the next 3 months my NC driver license will expire this October 21 st. What do I need to renovate by mail

Submitted by ehcart on 12th Sep 2011

I have my Georgia restricted

I have my Georgia restricted license but I moved full-time to North carolina and I want to get my full driver's license. how do I get it and what do I need? I am 18 years old and have a registered vehicle. please email me. heyward.cart@gmail.com my name is Heyward

Submitted by Terps on 29th Jun 2011

Please send information about

Please send information about Driving Eligibility Hardship

Submitted by KDanielM on 2nd Jun 2011

I moved to NC from NY and I

I moved to NC from NY and I don't own a vehicle. How can I still convert my license to NC?

Submitted by MsSmalls515 on 13th Nov 2011

I moved to NC from NY and I

I moved to NC from NY and I don't own a vehicle. How can I still convert my license to NC?

Submitted by heatherbotswana on 18th May 2011

Hello. We are Americans, but

Hello. We are Americans, but are missionaries in Botswana. Before we went to Africa, we had OH driver licenses. Those expired since we were away - but we no longer had residence there. We will be renting a house in NC and wanted to know what we must do to get a NC license? We cannot surrender our Botswana license, as we are returning there after our furlough in the beginning of 2012. Thank you.

Submitted by any on 13th May 2011

If license is suspended in

If license is suspended in another state (ohio) am I still able to get my nc lisence please reply at MISSTHANG43302@yahoo.com plz

Submitted by Topsale34 on 5th Jun 2011

let me know if anyone has

let me know if anyone has answered your question. My boyfriend has the same issue. We are from Ohio too!

EGay

Submitted by allladders514 on 14th Jan 2012

will i be able to get a north

will i be able to get a north carolina drivers license if my ohio license is suspended? It is because of 2 speeding tickets and no insurance at the time of my stop.

Submitted by Anonymous on 10th May 2011

what type of proof of

what type of proof of residency do i need

Submitted by jackinbangkok on 30th Oct 2014

let me know if anyone has

let me know if anyone has answered your question. I have the same issue. Jack

Submitted by Anonymous on 9th May 2011

Can I drive my motorcycle

Can I drive my motorcycle outside the stat of NC with a NC learners permit?

Submitted by Anonymous on 4th May 2011

Hello I have a California

Hello I have a California drivers license that expires on my bday which is Monday. Can you please tell me what I have to do to get a NC license? Do I have to take a written test and how much does it cost? Thank you.

Submitted by Anonymous on 12th Apr 2011

hi, my license is about to

hi, my license is about to expire, can i renew with my ITTN (tax number), since i don't have soc sec. Please answer me to fabiano.nyc@hotmail.com, thank you

Submitted by Anonymous on 16th Mar 2011

I had my drivers license

I had my drivers license suspended due to a DWI. This was my first offense and I was issued a limited license so I could work. I did my community service and also completed th ADECS class as ordered by the court. What do i have to do to get my license restored. Also how long does it take to receive the imformation from the DMV.

Submitted by Anonymous on 16th Mar 2011

hi, my name is Jacqueline and

hi, my name is Jacqueline and i wanted to know if i could apply for a driver licenses but i dont have a ssn i have my itin could i apply with that one. im living in north carolina greensboro. salassjackie23@yahoo.com

thank you

Submitted by Anonymous on 16th Mar 2011

hi, my name is Jacqueline and

hi, my name is Jacqueline and i wanted to know if i could apply for a driver licenses but i dont have a ssn i have my itin could i apply with that one. im living in north carolina greensboro. salassjackie23@yahoo.com

thank you

Submitted by Anonymous on 10th Mar 2011

Hello i am trying to apply

Hello i am trying to apply for my drivers license but i am not eligible for a SSN, i do however have my ITIN, and i was wondering if that, along with a form of proof that i am not eligible for a SSN would be enough for me to get my drivers license. Please e-mail me at bloodschythe@gmail.com

Thank You,

Edward Soto

Submitted by Anonymous on 28th Feb 2011

I am moving from Delaware to

I am moving from Delaware to NC i have Delaware licenses what i have to do to get NC licenses? What all do i need when i come to DMV get my NC licenses? Thank you Ms. Cooper.

Submitted by MsSmalls515 on 13th Nov 2011

I am moved from NYC to NC and

I am moved from NYC to NC and I have NYC licenses. What i have to do to get NC licenses? What all do I need when I go to DMV get my NC licenses? What is the cost for the replacement/transfer?

Submitted by keylord on 26th Nov 2012

please reply

please reply

Submitted by Anonymous on 28th Feb 2011

I'm sorry plz e-mail me @

I'm sorry plz e-mail me @ doris.cooper39@yahoo.com