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Important Reminders for Teens Applying for their First Driver License


Contact:  Office of Public Affairs
2415 First Avenue 
Sacramento, CA 95818
(916) 657–6437 |

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August 9, 2016

Important Reminders for Teens Applying for their First Driver License

New California Residency Documents Required

Sacramento - The summer months are a popular time for teenagers to apply for their driver license. The California Department of Motor Vehicles (DMV) wants to remind teens and their parents or guardians that new documents are now required when applying for a first time driver license (DL) or identification (ID) card.  

The DMV now requires proof of California residency documents that must list the applicant’s first and last name, and the California residence address must match the address listed on the driver license application and be presented when applying. The DMV understands teens may not have residency documents in their name, so to meet this requirement, minors may use a birth certificate to match their relationship to a parent or provide a letter of guardianship with two acceptable residency documents to trace their relationship. Below are a few examples of California Residency documents:

  • School documents
  • Medical documents
  • Employment documents
  • Cellular phone bill
  • Records from a financial institution
  • Rental or lease agreement
  • Deed or title to residential property
  • Mortgage bill
  • Home utility bills

*Note:  Minors do not need to have residency documents in their name as long as their parent’s name listed on their birth certificate matches the proof of residency documents.

When completing the driver license application form, the signature of the custodial parent(s) or guardian is required, if the applicant is under the age of 18.

Remember, first time driver license applicants must make an appointment before visiting a DMV field office. Walk-ins are only accepted at Driver License Processing Centers.  

The DMV has a helpful Teen Drivers webpage that features a checklist of requirements for applicants under 18 years old. Among the items needed are a Driver License or Identification Card Application form (DL 44), social security number, true full name, an acceptable birth date and proof of legal presence document, acceptable residency documents, and proof of driver education completion.

The residency requirement law went into effect July 1, 2016.  For more information about obtaining a new DL or ID card, visit the Driver License and Identification Card Information web page or find the Residency Requirement link under the “Trending” section on the DMV website.


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