florida drivers license renewal - FL

Renew your Florida drivers license. Prepare all your DMV info. Get all the forms, rules and steps required for your FL drivers license renewal. Drivers in the state of Florida have a few different renewal options. The fastest and most convenient method is to renew online. Another suitable option is to renew by sending your application via mail. If you do not qualify for any of those methods, you are always welcome to stop by a driver license office. Your final alternative is to let us handle everything for you. We’ll supply you with a handy checklist, and prepare you with all of the important forms, rules, and steps. Please continue reading below to get started with your Florida license renewal.

Florida Drivers License Renewal Information

Expiration Date

Your class E (non commercial) driver's license in the Sunshine State will usually expire every eight (8) years and therefore must be renewed at this interval. However, some licenses were only issued for six (6) years. Also note that licenses issued to drivers with immigration documents will have an expiration date that depends on their legal status. As a quick reminder, your license will always expire on your birthday. To verify your expiration date, double check by looking at the front part of your license. It will clearly say the expiration date, as illustrated on our sample image below. 

florida-drivers-license    

You must have your license on your person while driving. If you are cited by a traffic officer, you will be asked to show your license. If you happen to lose or destroy your license, you must file for a replacement as soon as possible.

Renewal Notice

You may receive a renewal reminder of your upcoming expiration. If you are eligible to renew by mail, a renewal package might be sent to you.  In order to keep this possibility open, please make sure that the FL DMV has your latest mailing address on file. A drivers license address change must be reported to the DMV ten (10) days after you move. This will allow you to receive important reminders about your license and vehicle registration. If you did not receive a reminder, don't worry as it is not required to renew. To make sure of your renewal options please keep reading below or you may contact the DMV by phone at 850-617-2000 or by filling out the following contact form on the website. Receiving a renewal notice is a great reminder, but if you do not receive one and do not renew on time, your license will expire. The DMV is not held responsible for your late renewal.

When To Renew

The FL DMV will give you sufficient time to plan your renewal. You are able to renew eighteen (18) months before your license expires. It's wise to use this rule as it will give you plenty of preparation time to get your documents in order for your renewal appointment. 

Expired Florida License

By not renewing on time, your license will be officially expired. If your license expires you will not be able to drive. As of the year 2012, under Florida Statute 322.065 driving with an expired license is a traffic violation and you will be fined. On top of risking breaking any traffic laws, the DMV will charge you a late renewal fee. That fee is currently $15.00. There is no grace period. Your license will be officially expired after midnight on your birth day.

If your license is taken away because of a suspension, your renewal will be denied. Driving is a privilege that you must keep in good standing with the state. After serving your suspension period which could be between 30 days to 1 year, you'll need to have your license reinstated and pay all applicable fees. To find out about your options, please contact customer support and select the suspended license option. The final step after having your license returned to you, is to apply for car insurance. Since your rates will more than likely increase, you'll want to get the best prices and coverage for you. Let us do the work by using our Free Insurance Guide.

Renew Florida Drivers License Online

Let's go over the conditions that you must meet in order to renew online.

Requirements to Renew Online

  • Note: There will be an additional fee of $2.00 added to the online transaction. 
  • You must be eligible to receive a license.
  • If your current license is not REAL ID compliant, then you must go into an office in order to become complaint. Please read our REAL ID section to learn more.
  • You must be either a U.S. citizen or permanent resident with a social security number. If you you have any problems with your social security number, please contact the social security administration
    If you suspect that there could be an issue with your driver's license, please check it online.
    • A resident of the state of Florida is defined as follows:  
      • Your principle place of domicile must be in Florida for more than six (6) consecuitive months. 
      • You must be registered to vote in Florida
      • You must either have filed homestead exemption OR you have made a statment of domicile pursuant to section 222.17, Florida Statutes
    • A U.S. Citizen is defined as follows: 
      • You were born in the U.S. Or have been naturalized. Or have a Certificate of Citizenship.
  • If you wish to replace your drivers license with an ID card, you must go in person.
  • If you are older than eighty (80) years of age, you must first pass a vision test. This can be done at a florida dmv office, or with your private practitioner. Please read the section in person below for more details on the vision test.
  • Your license must not be on suspension, revocation or cancelation status. 
  • If you had a traffic violation and had a summons, and you did not answer this summons, you will not be allowed to renew. 
  • If you last renewed online or by mail you cannot renew online consecutively. You must go in person.
  • If your license is not a photo type license, you cannot use the online service. You must go in person.  
  • Your current license must have been issued on after the year 2002
  • Your current license cannot be expiring more than eighteen (18) months from expiration date. 

STEPS

  1. Visit the FL online renewal site to get started.
  2. You will be asked to to the Driver Privacy Protection Act Warning. The Act states that you can only use this website to access your own personal information, and not that of someone else, unless you have written permission to do so.
  3. Locate Your Records:  You will be asked to enter your last name AND your date of birth.
    • Note: Your last name must be identical to your registration's last name. If you use two last names, and they both appear on your registration, you must enter both last names.
  4. After your record is located based on the above information, you will need to enter your mailing address.
  5. You will be asked whether you are a Florida resident and whether you have a Social Security Number.
    • If you do have a social security number, please either enter the complete social security number OR the last 5 digits
    • If you do not have your social security number you must provide one of the following:
      • License Plate #, Title #, Documented Vessel #, Vessel FL #
  6. If you do not provide your complete social security number, you must also provide one of the following alongside the last 4 digits of your social security number:
    • Your driver license number OR ID card number OR title number OR license plate number OR documented vessel number OR vessel FL number
  7. Your information will be verified immediately and you will be given a few on screen instructions if successful.
  8. If successful, you will sent an email (to the address on file).
  9. You will also be asked whether you would like to update your emergency contact information on file.
    • This is very handy to have in the event of an emergency. That way, the state can easily contact your loved ones. 
  10. You will be asked whether you would like to register to join to become an organ and tissue donor. You can even join if you are under 18 years of age.
  11. You will also be asked whether you would like to update your email address on file. This is optional.
  12. You will also have the option of paying for a host of voluntary contributions. A list will be presented to you at this step.
  13. Prepare to pay the $48.00 renewal Fee for Class E licenses. You must add a $15.00 late fee is you are past expiration date. All forms of payment are accepted. You can use a credit card, debit card or even a check.
    • Payments methods accepted are Visa, MasterCard, Discover and American Express
  14. If you would like a receipt sent your email address, you will be asked to enter it, and you must manually press the "Send Email Confirmation" button. A copy of the receipt will be sent immediately to your address.
  15. The FL DMV will send your new license via mail and should arrive in approximately one (1) week (although usually quicker). Your new license will be valid for a period of either six (6) or eight (8) years.
  16. By law, you must destroy your old license. 


Note: For questions concerning your online request, please contact the DMV via the following methods:

Website: Click Here.
Phone Numbers: 850-617-2000

Florida Drivers License Renew by Mail

Its possible that if you qualified to renew by mail, the DMV will send you a renewal packet to your mailing address. If you are an active duty military driver, please read the military section below.

Requirements to Renew By Mail

  • You must have received a renewal packet or you must be on active duty serving with the military. 
  • You must not be older than eighty (80) years of age. If you are, you must go in person to have your vision checked.
  • If your license is not a photo type license, you cannot use the online service. You must go in person.  

STEPS

  1. Fill out the application that was sent in your renewal packet. 
  2. Include payment for the cost of $48.00. If you are renewing late, there is an extra fee of $15.00.
  3. Send the application and payment to the address listed on the application form. 
  4. Your new license will arrive by mail in approximately one (1) week time. 

 

Note: For questions concerning your online request, please contact the DMV via the following methods:

Website: Click Here.
Other Contact Pages: Click Here
Driver License Offices: Click Here

Phone Numbers: 850-617-2000

Florida Drivers License Renewal for Military Drivers

The state of Florida will give you and your dependents flexibility as far as when and how to renew your expiring driver's license. You will be given two (2) options for renewing your license.

  1. Simply renew your license online, in the same manner as all other drivers in Florida.
  2. Or you can apply via mail for an extension of ninety (90) days from the date of your return to Florida (following termination of active duty)

Requirements 

  • You must be currently on active duty serving outside the state of Florida.
  • Commercial driver licenses cannot be extended. Extension is only for Class E licenses. 
  • If your license is not a photo type license, you cannot use the online service. You must go in person.  
  • Your license must be active (cannot be on suspension or revocation)
  • If you elect to renew online, the FL DMV system must have your U.S. citizen status.

Renewal Steps for U.S. Military Drivers Extension By Mail

You may process your 90 day extension using any one of the following three options.

  1. Fill out the following Military Extension Application.
    • You'll be required to enter your name, birth date, driver license number, place of birth, address, mailing address. 
    • Your signature and that of your command officer is required.
    • Please send the application by mail, email, or fax.
      • Mailing Address: Customer Service Center 2900, Apalachee Pkwy, MS 99, Tallahassee, FL  32399 
      • Fax: 850-617-3985
      • Email: CSC-Corr@flhsmv.gov
  2. If you are unable to print out the form above, you may call 850-617-2000 and process your extension over the phone.
  3. If you would instead like to have your extension processed via email, you may do so by filling out the following form online.
  4. There is no cost for this service.
  5. Once your extension is processed, the DMV will mail you a card that will serve as the 90 day extension. You must always carry this card along with your license and military ID at all times while driving. 

Note: Once you move back to Florida you must go in person to renew your license and show all required documents.

Renew Florida Drivers License In Person

If renewing online or by mail is not an option for you, you are welcome to go in person and have one of the Florida DMV attendants help you obtain your new license. 

Requirements to Renew In Person

  • If your license is not REAL ID compliant, and you wish to obtain a compliant one, you must go in person. Please read our REAL ID section to learn more.
  • If you wish to replace your drivers license with an ID card, this is your only option.
  • If you are a non-immigrant this is your only option.
  • If you wish to take a new picture this is your only option.
  • If this is your first license, you must go in person.
  • Commercial driver license holders can only renew in person.
  • If your license is Temporary, this is your only option.
  • You must hand in your existing (old) driver license.
  • You will be given a vision test.
  • If you now reside in a new address, please bring the change of address documents with you.
  • This is your only option if the last time you renewed either online or by mail.
  • You have legally changed your name, either by marriage, court order or divorce.
  • You want to change a designation on your license.
  • You must renew in person if you are eighty (80) years or older.
  • You must be eligible to receive a license.
  • You must not have a suspended license or a license that has been taken away. 
  • If you had a traffic violation and had a summons, and you did not answer this summons, you will not be allowed to renew. 
  • If you are not a U.S. citizen or resident, and you are here temporarily with a legal visa or immigration papers, this is your only option. 
  • Your license must be expiring within eighteen (18) months. Expired license holders may also renew in person.
  • You must present the required documentation.

STEPS

  1. Prepare your required documents. There are very specific requirements for this. Please read below for exact details.
  2. Make an appointment to schedule a visit at any driver license office in Florida. 
  3. You must pass a vision test if you are eighty (80) years or older or if your license has expired.
    • You may have the test performed for free at at the DMV office. Please schedule your renewal for this (not required, but useful to save time). Or you have may have your own Florida eye care specialist (you may also go to a VA hospital) perform the test.
    • The eye doctor must complete the following a HSMV 72119 Vision Form. You may download it here.
    • Have the eye doctor send the form electronically to the FL DMV by using this page.
    • The eye test must not be older than one (1) year.
    • If for some reason you fail the test, there could still be an option for you to renew your license. You may qualify to get a restricted license.
    • For additional questions, do not hesitate to contact the DMV at 850-617-2000 or send them an email Vision@flhsmv.gov
  4. Please bring any change of address documents with you if you have a new address.
  5. Please bring any change of name documents with you if you have recently changed your address.
  6. Bring money to pay the renewal Fee.
    • The cost is $48.00
    • Note: You must add $15.00 if your license has expired.
  7. Your photograph will be taken and stored.
  8. You may not possess two licenses. You must discard your old one or hand it over to the DMV.


If successful, the DMV will create and give you your new Real ID federally compliant driver's license which should be valid for either six or eight years..  

Florida Drivers License Renewal Documents

Since the year 2010, federal regulations have demanded that you present the following documents when renewing your license. This is due to the REAL ID Act. 

Note: You will only need to show the documents below if any of the following are true

  • This is the first time you are applying for a drivers license.
  • The last time you renewed either online or by mail, AND your current license does not have a star (REAL ID compliant, read section below) on the upper right hand corner. 
  • You have legally changed your name, either by marriage, court order or divorce.

Following Section is for U.S. Citizens 

Bring one (1) certified copy or original of the following documents.

  • Proof of Identity alongside Birth Date (Primary Identification). The following documents will show proof of your U.S.A. citizenship and or legal status.
    • U.S. Passport or Passcord Card (these must be active and not expired)
    • U.S. Birth Certificate.
      • Note: Certificates from Puerto Rico must be July 1 2010 or later.
      • A birth certificate from a hospital will not be accepted, as that is not considered a certified document.
      • For certified birth certificates, you must show a document from your county health deparment or the CDC. Please see below for links to these institutions
    • Consular Report of Birth Abroad.  
    • Certificate of Naturalization (form N 550 or form N 570) OR Certificate of Citizenship (form N 560 or form N 561).
    • Note: If necessary, in order to match your name from the above list of documents, to the name on your driver license or ID, you will be asked to show your marriage certificate, divorce decree, or court order documents.
      However, if your passport's (from U.S.A.) name matches your current name, you will not be asked to show additional documents. 
  • Proof of Social Security Number (must show entire name and entire SSN)
    • You may bring either your SSN card. View here for more information on how to get or request a duplicate SSN card.
    • w-2 form (cannot be handwritten),
    • pay stub or
    • 1099 form (or SSA-1099). (cannot be handwritten), 
    • If you were never assigned a social security number, please contact SSA.gov and have them write a letter saying that you are not eligible. In addition to the letter, you must show another form of identification. This could be either a drivers license, school record, certificate of baptism, insurance document, military ID, court order, CWP (concealed weapons permit) etc..
  • Proof of Residential Address. You must show two (2) documents from this list. Your drivers license will not work to satisfy this requirement.
    • Examples of allowed documents are an automobile insurance policy, deed, mortgage payments, mortgage statement, lease agrrement,
    • Florida Voter Registration Card, 
    • car registration or car title,
    • boat registration or boat title,
    • utility work receipt performed during past 2 months,
    • car payment,
    • health insurance card or medical card,  
    • home or auto insurance documents or cards,
    • the following statement from a parent legal guardian or person whom you reside,
    • work license (must be U.S. government issued),
    • work order or utility hook up that is not older than two (2) months,
    • selective service registration card,
    • form w-2 or 1099,
    • ds2019 form, Certificate of Eligibility for Exchange Visitor (J-1) status
    • school transcript (must be the current year)
    • homeless shelter, half way house or transitional service provider letter with the following official certification of address form
    •  Florida Department of Law Enforcement form filled out by your sheriff.
    • checking, savings or investment account correspondence.
    • goverment agency correspondence (federal, state, city or county)
  • Note: If you are not a citizen of the USA you must present proof of legal presence.
  • Note: If you cannot show any of the documents above, you must provide two proofs of address, alongside the  certification of address form . These may come from your parents, step parents, or legal guardian, or the person that you live with.  

Following Section is for Immigrants

List of documents needed for immigrants wishing to renew Florida drivers license.

Following Section is for Non-Immigrants

List of documents needed for non-immigrants wishing to renew Florida drivers license.

Following Section is for Canadian Citizens

List of documents needed for canadians wishing to renew Florida drivers license.

Auto Insurance

If you do not carry auto insurance in Florida you will be given a fine and possibly face license suspension. The law states that you must always carry financial responsibility and no fault insurance on your motor vehicle. This will cover the costs of potential damages when involved in an accident. Do not drive without insurance. Preparing for insurance costs during your upcoming renewal process will help you get a more affordable rate. Just give us your Florida zip code and we'll take care of making sure that you find the best possible insurance rates in your state. Use our Insurance Guide to get started.

Emergency Contact Information

This service is called ECI for Emergency Contact Information. Your information is securely stored in the D.A.V.I.D. (Driver And Vehicle Information Database). It's free and everyone can benefit from this in the event of an emergency. When enrolled, law enforcement is able to contact family or friends in case of an emergency, in the event that you are not able to use your cell phone. Common questions about this system

  • Your information is private. Only law enforcement is able to use or access it.
  • The state will never use your information for any other purpose but to contact the people on your list in case of an emergency.
  • This system was initiated by Christine Olson after her daughter Tiffiany passed away in a fatal crash. More than six hours lapsed before her mother was contacted.
  • You can learn more about the system at http://www.toinformfamiliesfirst.org/

To get your emergecny contact info entered, please visit the website below

  • Start Here: Emergency Contact Information Service
  • You can register up to three (3) people in the system
  • You will be asked to enter their phone numbers (could be home phone, mobile or work phone), and their address

REAL ID

The REAL ID Act was passed by Congess in 2005. Florida begain to issue licenses that were REAL ID complaint on January 4 2010. In order to find out if your license is compalint, it should have a star on the upper right hand corner. In 2020 (October), you will need a complaint license to board a federally regulated commercial aircraft. If your license is not complaint (from a non compliant state), you must show a second form of ID.

Why was it created? The Act should prevent terrorists from using fake identification in order to avoid detection. It will also help combat identity fraud. The Act establishes that there needs to be minimum security standards for driver license and identifications. You can read more in detail about the REAL ID Act here

The state of Florida is compliant with the REAL ID Act, which means that federal agencies will accept your drivers license or ID in Federal facilities or nuclear power plants.

Documents Needed When Applying for a REAL ID 

Read section above for documents required.