Electronic Driver License and ID Card Application FAQs
1. Why is the DMV changing to an electronic driver license application?
The California DMV is offering customers a new way to speed up the driver license and ID card application process. Customers can save time by completing the electronic application online before visiting a DMV field office. The electronic application is also part of the department’s commitment to go green by reducing paper forms.
2. What do I need to complete the electronic application?
To complete the application before your field office visit, you will need to sign in and complete a two-factor authentication to prove your digital identity. You will need an email address you have access to and a way to receive a phone call or text message. You will also need to provide all of the same information that is on the paper application, such as your name, date of birth, address, your Social Security number (if applicable) and the type of card you are applying for.
3. Why do I need to create a login account to fill out the application?
Creating a login account provides added security. It also allows you to retrieve the application in the event you need to make any last minute changes before your visit to DMV.
4. What if I don’t have a cell phone, can I still log into the application?
Yes, you can also receive a phone call on a landline and receive the six-digit confirmation code.
5. What if I don’t have an email address, can I still log into the application?
You are required to have an email address to log in to the application if completing it from home. You don’t need an email address to complete the application in a DMV field office.
6. What if I don’t complete the electronic application, can I finish it another time?
Once your account login is complete, you can make changes to the application. The system will save your application for up to one year.
7. Will the electronic application save my information, and how long do I have to visit a field office after I complete the application?
A DMV employee can retrieve your electronic application once you submit the application. You will receive a confirmation code in your email. The application will be saved for 12 months after the last modification.
8. What can I do if I forget my username and/or password?
You can follow the steps on the login page to reset your username and/or password.
9. Is the electronic application easy to use?
Yes, the application is very intuitive and guides applicants through the process of filling out the required fields for a driver license or ID card.
10. Is the electronic application secure?
Yes, DMV is using a two-factor authentication sign-in, which makes the information you add to the electronic application safe and secure.
11. Does the electronic application cost extra to use?
No, it is free to use.
12. How do I sign the application?
You will sign the form once you visit a DMV field office and complete the process with a DMV employee.
13. Can I complete the electronic application at a DMV field office?
Yes, you can use the TouchScreen Terminal available in all DMV field offices. You are not required to use an email or phone number at the TouchScreen Terminals. You can also use your own digital device while in a field office, but will need to create a login using an email and phone number.
14. Is the electronic application going to be different for REAL ID?
No, the application is the same for a REAL ID, Federal Non-Compliant card or Commercial driver license.
15. Can I apply for a commercial driver license with the electronic application?
16. Can I apply for endorsements with the electronic application?
17. Can I apply for an ID card for a minor using the electronic application?
Yes. A parent can use their own email when completing the electronic application for minors, if the minor does not have their own email account.
18. Does the electronic application apply to vehicle registration transactions?
No. The electronic application is only for driver license and ID card transactions.
19. Is the electronic application only available in English?
The application is available in 10 languages: English, Spanish, Chinese, Hindi, Japanese, Khmer, Korean, Tagalog, Thai and Vietnamese.
20. Is the paper version of the driver license application no longer available?
A new paper version of the driver license application is available in field offices for customers who decline to complete the electronic version. Although, the DMV is moving towards a completely paperless process and will begin to phase out the paper application.
21. Will the DMV share any information on the electronic application?
Information on the electronic application is only used for a DMV transaction. Although, pursuant to state law, customers who are eligible to register to vote will have their voter registration information shared with the Secretary of State.
22. Will I be registered to vote when I fill out the electronic application?
No. Before the Secretary of State will register you to vote, you must submit the electronic application to the DMV and also complete your transaction at a DMV field office. Once at the field office, a DMV employee will retrieve your driver license or identification card application and complete the transaction with you. The DMV will then electronically transmit voter information to the Secretary of State to complete the voter registration. Those who indicate eligibility to vote and do not opt out, will be registered to vote.
23. Will I be a registered organ and tissue donor when I fill out the electronic application?
No. The organ and tissue donor registry will not be completed until an applicant visits a field office and submits the application with a DMV employee as part of your driver license or identification card application.
24. When will I need to complete the electronic application?
To help expedite your field office visit, it is recommended that you complete the electronic application before you visit a DMV field office. The application can also be completed using a TouchScreen Terminal in a DMV field office.
25. What is the confirmation number?
You will receive a confirmation number in your email once you complete and submit the electronic application. A DMV field office employee can use your confirmation number to look up your application.
26. I received a renewal notice that says I can renew by mail or by Internet. Do I need to use this electronic application?
No. If you choose to renew online or by mail, you do not need to fill out the electronic application. Please note: if you renew your driver license or ID card online or by mail, you will receive a Federal Non-Compliant driver license or ID card with the words “Federal Limits Apply.” Learn more at REALID.dmv.ca.gov
27. I’m under 18 years old. How do I get my parents to sign so I can get my license?
The electronic driver license application provides a section for parents to complete. Voter pre-registration is available for 16- and 17-year-old applicants. Once they turn 18, they will be registered to vote.
28. I don’t want to include my social security number on the application. Will the DMV still process my application?
DMV takes the privacy and security of our customer’s information seriously and has employed measures to ensure the electronic application is secure. If a customer has a Social Security number, the law requires them to provide it on their application.
29. I just need to get a motorcycle license. Do I use the same electronic application?
Yes, you can use the electronic application to apply for or add a motorcycle license.