1.

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.


It is important to replace lost driver’s license in Ohio immediately following misplacing it or theft. You should also replace cards that have suffered enough damage that the text becomes illegible or the photo unrecognizable. Note that if your license is close to expiration, instead of getting a duplicate, you may opt to renew your license instead.

A replacement license in Ohio will expire on the same date as your current license, while a renewal will start an entirely new renewal cycle. Continue reading the sections below to learn how to obtain duplicate documentation, including where you may initiate the replacement drivers license process and tips for getting your application completed quickly.

When is a replacement drivers license required in Ohio?

A replacement driver license in Ohio is required as soon as possible following a loss, theft or damage to your license. It is best to visit an Ohio Bureau of Motor Vehicles (BMV) office the next business day, to get an application and avoid any fines or inconveniences linked to not having a copy of your photo ID in your wallet. If you are without a valid driving credential, it is best to not drive at all until you replace it.

Getting stopped by Ohio law enforcement without proper proof of driving credentials can be tricky, most officers will not accept a “lost driver’s license” excuse and will often issue a ticket to those who drive without their current driver’s license on hand. Another reason to seek a prompt replacement is if you lose or gain a lot of weight, undergo a gender reassignment or markedly alter your appearance in another way. Your current credentials should always feature a photo that closely matches your appearance.

There are dozens of BMV locations that issue documents, yet make sure you check ahead of time with the location that you intend to visit. You must ensure that a deputy registrar is available to verify your identity with the BMV database. If you provide all the necessary documents, your OH duplicate driver’s license will be issued to you at the agency. Otherwise, you may have to come back later for verification, which means a longer wait to receive your replacement.

How to Replace Your Driver’s License in Person in Ohio

If you have asked the question, “Where can I get a copy of my driver’s license in Ohio?” there is only one answer: at your nearest BMV office. You cannot request a duplicate driver’s license by mail or begin the process online. At this time, your document can only be obtained in person. However, you may be able to establish an appointment online.

When you go to get your license, bring a photo ID such as a school ID or employer identification card, and you will be issued a replacement. A student identification card from a recognized school, college or university is acceptable for duplicate driver’s license requests if it includes a photograph. However, if you do not have another form of photo identification to replace the lost identification, you will need to bring in a supplementary document. Accepted documents are listed below:

  • Ohio motor vehicle title (a vehicle registration is not acceptable)
  • Credit card
  • Health insurance card
  • Marriage certificate or marriage license
  • Public assistance benefit card or statement

An employer identification card is an acceptable document to get a copy of your driver’s license credentials even if it does not include a photo. Additionally, the above documents are only deemed acceptable to replace driver’s license cards if the driver is a U.S. citizen and the existing Ohio credential being replaced is valid and verifiable via the Ohio BMV system.

When you apply, you will be required to sign a sworn statement vowing not to operate a motor vehicle without proper liability insurance. Be prepared to attest to this when you request a duplicate drivers license, and make sure your vehicle insurance coverage is up to date before visiting the BMV.

It is the law that operators of motor vehicles in Ohio carry liability coverage at the state’s legal minimum whether you own a vehicle or not. If you fail to meet the insurance requirements when applying to replace a lost driver’s license, your application will not be approved.

Out-of-State Driver’s License Replacement in Ohio

If you are temporarily residing outside of Ohio, you may be eligible to receive an out-of-state duplicate driver’s license packet by calling the BMV or emailing the registrar through the form provided by the BMV online.

Eligible out-of-state applicants seeking a replacement drivers license must have an OH address on record with the BMV, be a U.S. citizen or documented immigrant, and may not be incarcerated or have any driver’s license blocks or suspensions.

Ohio Driver’s License Replacement Fees

Obtaining an Ohio replacement drivers license will require the payment of a $24.50 fee. You can pay for Ohio lost driver’s license replacement services in person at any deputy registrar license agency or reinstatement center with cash, a personal check, a money order or a major credit card. All applicable fees must be paid in full at the time of issuance.

Last updated on Wednesday, December 5 2018.

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