How to Replace Your Drivers License in New Jersey
If your license has been recently lost or stolen, you will need to replace it as soon as possible. Without a valid license, you will not be able to drive legally in your state or present a valid form of identification when necessary. The two most common methods of replacing your lost or stolen license are visiting your local licensing location in person or applying for a replacement online. Under certain circumstances, you may also be able to replace your license or ID by mail. However, the fastest and most efficient way to replace your driving credential is online. To learn how to replace your license online, you can refer to our helpful drivers license guide. In addition to helping you through the replacement process, our guide will also teach you how to renew and change the name or address on your license.
2. By Mail
Most states offer a mail-in application option to residents who have lost their license while out of the state. In most cases, military service members stationed outside of the state will also be able to apply for a replacement by mail. To apply, you will need to mail in a primary and secondary proof of identification, such as a birth certificate, valid U.S. passport, Social Security card or W-2 form. You will also need to send proof of a residential address such as a deed, voter registration card or utility bill. Depending on your state, you will be required to provide any combination of the aforementioned documents, in addition to other documents and information. You will also need to keep in mind that it may take several weeks to obtain your replacement license, as mail can often be delayed or unreliable.
3. In Person at a DMV Office
Finally, you can replace your lost or stolen license at your local DMV or licensing office. You will be required to bring all the documents previously mentioned as proof of identification and residency. If you are uncomfortable mailing these important documents to the DMV, then an in-person visit is more secure. However, you may need to reschedule an appointment if you forget your passport, citizenship certificate, car title or any other documents that you are using as proof of identification or residency. Additionally, if you make any mistakes on your form, you will not be able to receive your replacement license or ID the same day you apply for it at the DMV.
You must replace lost drivers license documents to the New Jersey Motor Vehicle Commission (MVC) if you are a driver and resident of the state. You will also need to replace drivers license cards that are damaged to a point that the information or photo is no longer legible and identifiable. In addition to getting a duplicate copy of missing or marred credentials, you will need to request an updated replacement copy if information on the card has changed.
Unless you are eligible for mail-in drivers license replacement because you are temporarily living outside of the state of NJ, you will need to complete this process in person at a local office. You cannot obtain a drivers license copy online at this time. Whether you opt to get credentials by mail or in person, you will be required to complete an application for a replacement card. In addition, certain identification documents and fees are required for replacement. To learn more about how to replace drivers license in NJ, including the process for out-of-state license replacement, review the details included in the sections below.
When is a replacement drivers license required in New Jersey?
A replacement drivers license in New Jersey should be requested if you have experienced a recent legal name change or moved to a new address. A name correction and change of address on drivers license are important since the card is typically used for identification purposes. You must also replace drivers license credentials if your photo on file with the NJ MVC no longer matches your current appearance or if you need to remove or add a vision or handicapped driver restriction. It is important to keep you driving record up to date with your current information, appearance and capacities.
The majority of those who ask to get copy of drivers license documents have a missing or damaged card. If their existing license has been mutilated in some way and is no longer decipherable, then they will need to seek a replacement copy. Those requesting a duplicate drivers license because of theft should review the “How to Report a Missing Drivers License in New Jersey” section below to find out how to deter consequences of a stolen card.
How to Replace Your New Jersey Drivers License in Person
If you are wondering, “Where can I get a copy of my drivers license?” then the answer is easy. Simply appear at one of the NJ MVC offices during normal business hours and request a copy of the application for a license copy. Before you can receive your duplicate drivers license, you might have to take a new photo.
The MVC is required to capture a picture that includes your full face, so if you have a medical or religious need to wear a head covering, then advise your MVC agent or the staff at the agency’s camera station. To replace lost drivers license credentials in person, you will need to provide all the requested information, sign the application form and pay the fee.
Out-of-State Drivers License Replacement in New Jersey
All applicants who need a DMV duplicate license by mail from out-of-state must meet certain eligibility requirements. First, you must be a U.S. citizen and not have temporary visa status. You must hold a valid NJ copy of drivers license and your MVC account must be in good standing.
Additionally, your NJ license must be a digital license and you must not have used the stored photo for more than one drivers license replacement or drivers license renewal since the photo was taken. If you have already used your stored photograph for a renewal or replacement, then you must appear in person at an MVC office to have a new picture taken. Finally, your credentials must have been lost for less than three years.
If you meet all of the above requirements, then you may write a letter to the MVC explaining your need for a replacement drivers license and why you are out of NJ and when you plan to return. You will also need to collect the following documents:
- The application form, which is not available online but may be requested from the MVC
- Check or money order for the fee payment
- Certified copies or photocopies of ID that meet the “Six Points of Identification” standards detailed on the MVC website
- Proof of your permanent address in New Jersey
- Your out-of-state or out-of-country address where you wish to receive your duplicate drivers license in the mail
If you wish to expedite the delivery of your DMV duplicate license, then include a self-addressed, stamped envelope. Send all of the above components of your packet to the NJ Motor Vehicle Commission Government In-House Unit in Trenton.
How to Report a Missing Drivers License in New Jersey
The MVC recommends reporting any lost drivers license in New Jersey that is stolen or suspected to be stolen. Requesting a police report helps protect you against identity fraud if someone took your copy of drivers license with the intent to use it illegally. Simply call your local police agency and explain the situation. A law enforcement officer will advise you on what steps to take to obtain a written police report.
Keep a copy of the report on hand in case you need it later to validate that you had to replace drivers license documentation because your original NJ license was actually stolen and not simply misplaced. Although state law does not require you to, you may show the MVC the police report so they can add a copy of it to your file.
New Jersey Drivers License Replacement Fees
When replacing drivers license documentation in NJ, expect to pay a $3 fee at the time you submit your application. However, this fee may vary based on your driving credentials and other factors.
Note that ordering a second copy of drivers license credentials to keep on hand as a spare is strictly prohibited by state law. If you obtain a duplicate drivers license in New Jersey, then you must destroy the original document or surrender it to the MVC.