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Q: California Replacement Driver's License ( Answered 4 out of 5 stars,   2 Comments )
Subject: California Replacement Driver's License
Category: Miscellaneous
Asked by: warensm-ga
List Price: $7.50
Posted: 25 Jun 2006 06:50 PDT
Expires: 25 Jul 2006 06:50 PDT
Question ID: 740920
My girlfriend's lost driver's license was issued by California.  She
will be in Maine for the next two months.  How can she obtain a
replacement without travelling to California?

This is complicated by the fact that we live in Texas.
Subject: Re: California Replacement Driver's License
Answered By: palitoy-ga on 25 Jun 2006 07:44 PDT
Rated:4 out of 5 stars
Hello warensm-ga,

Thank-you for your question.

According to the California Department of Motor Vehicles website there
are four possible routes to renewing your license or replacing a
lost/stolen one.  Depending on your exact situation not all may be
applicable and two require you to visit a DMV office (in California)
which is not what you require!

(1) In person
If you already have a California license and you want to renew, you will need to:
  * Visit a DMV office
  * Complete application form DL 44
  * Give a thumb print.
  * Have your picture taken.
  * Pay the application fee.
  * Pass an vision exam.
  * Look at your renewal notice. It will tell you if you need to take
a written test. If you must take a test, it will include traffic laws
and sign test. You will only need to answer the first 18 questions of
the 36 question exam. A passing score is at least 15 correct answers.
You have three chances to pass.
  * Check your address before you leave DMV and tell the DMV
representative if your address is incorrect.

(2) Renew your license by mail
You may be eligible to renew your license by mail if you can answer No
to all of the following questions:
  * Does your driver license expire more than 60 days from today's date?
  * Will you be 70 years of age or older when your current driver license expires?
  * Are you currently on any type of driving probation or suspension?
  * Did you violate a written promise to appear in court within the last two years?
  * Have you already received two consecutive four year extensions by mail?

(3) Renew your license by internet
You may be eligible to renew your license by Internet if you receive a
Renewal By Mail (RBM) Notice with a Renewal Identification Number
(RIN), and:
  * Have access to the Internet
  * Not have a change of address or change of personal description
  * Have a verified Social Security Number (SSN) on DMV's record
(since October 2000, DMV verifies SSNs with the Social Security
  * Have a valid credit card 

(4) Apply for a duplicate license
To apply for a duplicate license or ID card, you will need to:
  * Make an appointment to visit a DMV office
  * Complete application form DL 44
  * Pay the application fee
  * Give a thumb print
  * Have your picture taken

This information was taken from:

Whether you can renew the license by mail depending on your responses
to the questions in the section above but further information rules
out the option of replacing the license online:

"Q: Can I replace a lost or stolen license by Internet?
 A: Not at this time."

All of this indicates that the only way to renew or replace a lost
driving license is to visit a DMV office.  This can be confirmed using
the "Driver License Knowledge Finder" here:,Kb=DLinfo,U={B8F60310-DA4F-11D3-94F4-00500463020E},Company={9076B466-3532-11D6-8C0A-00306E02C80F},d=993765549453

Simply navigate your way through The Knowledge Finder and it quickly
locates the advice you need.  The Knowledge Finder also gives these
responses (please search for "lost" or the complete title to find them
in the database - I could not find a way to link directly to the

"How do I renew if I'm outside of California or in the military?  

If you are away from California (up to one year) when your driver
license expires, you may request a one-year license extension before
it expires. There is no fee for this extension. Individuals who have
been issued a "limited term" license are not eligible. Mail your
request to the Department of Motor Vehicles, P.O. Box 942890,
Sacramento, CA 94290-0001. Include your name as it appears on the
license, driver license number, birth date, California residence
address, and your out-of-state address."
(This response suggest you still need to be in possession of your license.)

"Can I report a missing license over the phone or by mail?

To Replace a Lost or Damaged License

If your driver license is lost or damaged, you must go to a DMV office
and pay the $20 fee for a duplicate. You must also present photo
identification. If DMV cannot confirm your identity, you will not be
issued a temporary license.

If you are a minor, your parents must sign the DMV application form (DL 44).

Once a duplicate license has been issued, the previous license is no
longer valid. Destroy it if you find it later."

The advice in this last page is quite categorical - if your driver
license is lost or damaged, you must go to a DMV office and pay the
$20 fee for a duplicate.

I am sorry I have not been able to discover a simple and easy way for
you to replace the lost license but there is no way of obtaining a
replacement without visiting a DMV office.

If you require any further assistance please do not hesitate to ask
for clarification and I will do my best to respond swiftly.

Further advice:
"What If Your License Is Lost Or Damaged?
If your driver license is lost or damaged, you must go to a DMV office
and pay the required fee for a duplicate.  You must also verbally
verify your address or present an acceptable birth verification/legal
presence document, utility bill, rent or mortgage coupon, or personal
check printed with your name and address.

If you are a minor, your parents must sign the DMV application form
(DL 44).  You will be required to give a thumb print and have a new
picture taken.  Once a duplicate license has been issued, the previous
license is no longer good.  Destroy it if you find it later."
warensm-ga rated this answer:4 out of 5 stars
Thanks, that confirms what I thought.  I'd found some of those same
sites, but I'd hoped there might be some other alternative.

Subject: Re: California Replacement Driver's License
From: pinkfreud-ga on 25 Jun 2006 12:58 PDT
Note also that a resident of Texas is required by law to have a Texas
driver's license. When you move to Texas, you have 30 days in which to
obtain a Texas driver's license.
Subject: Re: California Replacement Driver's License
From: warensm-ga on 27 Jun 2006 18:55 PDT
She's in the military, so the thinking is that she's probably exempt
from having to get a Texas driver's license.  I think she's been
stopped before and it wasn't a problem.

She called the California DMV, and they were actually very helpful. 
They faxed her a temporary license and will mail her a permanent one. 
I guess they will do that but don't want to advertise it on the web

Thanks again for the info.

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