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Department of Motor Vehicles

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-On Tuesday, June 6, the Inspection Station will begin operating on spring/summer hours. For more information, please visit the Inspection Station webpage.


-DC DMV will no longer prevent DC residents from applying for a new or renewed driver’s license because of failing to meet the requirements of the Clean Hands Law.


-DC DMV recommends the use of masks by employees and customers at all DC DMV facilities. Masks are still required during the in-vehicle portion of a road test.

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Obtain a Limited Purpose Driver License

In general, the steps to getting a DC DMV Limited Purpose driver license are:

  • Application
  • Documentation
  • Vision Screening
  • Knowledge Test
  • Road Test
  • Photograph
  • Fees
  • Mailing


The first step in obtaining a Limited Purpose driver license is to print and fill out the driver license/identification card application form. Effective June 26, 2018, if eligible, when you complete the application, you will automatically be opted in to register to vote unless you select to decline.

DC DMV no longer requires an appointment to visit one of its service centers to obtain a Limited Purpose driver license. DC DMV will accept walk-ins Wednesday through Saturday at any service center. Tuesdays will remain by appointment only for those seeking to obtain a Limited Purpose credential. An appointment is required by everyone to take the road skills test, and walk-ins are not accepted.

Appointments are available at any DC DMV service center.

Bring your completed application form and the rest of the required documentation to your appointment.


You must bring documents that prove you are eligible for a Limited Purpose driver license. The documents required are listed below, and DC DMV will not accept any documents that are not listed:

You will need:

Note: You may not get a DC DMV Limited Purpose driver license if you have outstanding debts to the District or unpaid fines for traffic violations in other jurisdictions.

Vision Screening

DC DMV administers the vision screening test at the DC DMV service centers. You must pass the vision test to be issued a Limited Purpose driver license.

Knowledge Test

At the DC DMV Service Center, when you have provided your application form and other documents, you must take and pass a knowledge test.

If you do not currently have a valid driver license from DC or another jurisdiction, you will be issued a Limited Purpose learner permit after you take and pass the knowledge test.

Road Skills Test

When you have passed the knowledge test, you can schedule a road skills test. An appointment is required, and walk-ins are not accepted.


You must take a new photograph after every driver license, knowledge test, or identification card transaction you have with DC DMV. District law and policy requires a full frontal digital photo that will show either the ears, or up to the hairline without showing the hair.


Once your photo has been taken, you will pay the appropriate fee for your license.


DC DMV will issue you a temporary, paper DC DMV driver license after you have completed the process and paid the fees. This temporary driver license will be valid for 45 calendar days; your actual license will be mailed to you within 10 business days. DC DMV does not mail licenses to PO boxes.

Check the mailing status of your license online.

Note: Drivers under the age of 21 who are obtaining a driver license are automatically enrolled in the GRAD Program.

Renew a Limited Purpose Driver License

Your DC DMV Limited Purpose driver license will be eligible for renewal. Instructions for renewals are available at the link below:

Replace a Limited Purpose Driver License

If you lose your DC DMV Limited Purpose driver license, or it is stolen or destroyed, you may replace it. Instructions for replacement are available at the link below:

You may make certain declarations regarding organ donation and special designation indicators such as Autism, Hearing Impaired, and Intellectual Disability on your DC DMV Limited Purpose driver license. Instructions for these designations are available at the link below:

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