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Absentee Driver License Renewal
If you're temporarily residing more than 200 miles beyond the District of Columbia border, you may qualify for absentee renewal of your DC driver license. This absentee renewal driver license will be valid for up to eight years. You may not request consecutive absentee driver license renewals.
Upon return to the District of Columbia, you must visit a service location to update your permanent address information within 72 hours of returning to the District of Columbia. To administer an absentee driver license renewal, mail the following to the DMV:
- Completed Driver License/Voter Registration Application [PDF]
Current DC driver License
(If your driver license has been lost or stolen, you must provide Proof of Name & Date of Birth and Proof of SSN. )
- Proof of Current Out of State Residency (see proof of DC residency, for the type of applicable documents) .
- Applicable Fees.
You may mail your request to
P.O. Box 90120,
Washington, DC 20024-0120
If your non-commercial DC driver license has been expired for more than 365 days, you must take and pass the knowledge test. If your non-commercial DC driver license has been expired for any period of time, you may take the District's online traffic school course to waive taking the knowledge test. If your non-commercial DC driver license has been expired for more than 545 days, you must take and pass both the knowledge test and the road test (note the road test must be scheduled in advance by appointment only). You may renew your license upon expiration and may not operate a vehicle on an expired license. (NOTE: The regulations for the time period required to retest after your license expires changed on June 6, 2013.)
If driver license was produced with a digital photograph and signature (utilized by DMV since August 2000), you may renew your driver license online as long as you meet the other online requirements. Otherwise, you may renew by mail or visit a DMV Service centers. If your last renewal was done online, you must go to a DMV location for a new picture (DC law and policy requires a full frontal digital photo that shows either the ears or up to the hairline without exposing the hair) and vision test.
If you are 70 years or older you must renew your driver license in-person by visiting a DMV service center. You must have your physician complete the certification on the driver license application and pass the eye vision screening.
The Patriot Act, Public Law 108-458, National Intelligence Reform Act of 2004 does NOT allow for social security numbers to be displayed on driver licenses or identification cards. If your driver license number is also your social security number, you will be required to visit a DMV Service Center for renewal in order to obtain a new photo and a randomly generated number.