DMV closures

DMV Closure Information – Obtaining Licenses During the Pandemic

The global pandemic caused by COVID-19 has caused many Americans to alter their daily routines. Not only has the pandemic caused the closure of many of our favorite local businesses, but government agencies and processing offices have also been on hiatus, or have been temporarily closed down. Vital records offices across the nation have been closed to in-person traffic as well. Ordering your vital records online through your state or with VitalChek – a process that has been in place for several years. –  has remained constant. In terms of obtaining driver’s licenses, government services have adapted to these changes by offering online application submissions, or appointment scheduling in cases where someone needs to talk to a clerk or official. 

Another serious impact the pandemic has had is temporary DMV closures at their physical locations across the U.S. This doesn’t just present issues for car registration or registration renewals. The issue of renewing and obtaining driver’s licenses and Real IDs has also been impacted by the pandemic. 

DMV Closures – How to Obtain Your New Licenses, Real ID’s, and License Renewals

One issue the pandemic has caused is the public’s inability to walk into their local DMV office to renew or obtain state issued IDs. While some office locations are beginning to open up across the nation, many U.S. citizens are still looking for options when it comes to registration, renewals, and obtaining new forms of ID. 

  • Renewals – If you’re looking to simply renew a license or vehicle registration, your options are pretty simple. For most, you can simply visit your state’s DMV website and begin the renewal process online. Unfortunately, renewal for some people means visiting a DMV office in person. In most states, the option to schedule an appointment has been made available for those who need to take their tests, or who have reached an age where written tests are necessary to renew. 
  • Vehicle registration – In most states, the option to begin your registration process online is available. In many places, you can begin the process online and schedule a time to come to the physical location to complete your registration. Be sure to contact your local DMV office to learn the steps to take; every state’s offices are different. Some locations allow patrons to arrive on site, and then call inside to be added to the waiting list; the DMV clerks will notify you when it’s safe to enter. 
  • Real ID license applications – Real ID deadlines have been pushed to October of 2021 and you can now begin the application process to obtain your new Real ID online! You will still be required to meet with someone in person to finalize your application, but this great new option allows you to get the ball rolling. Just be sure to have all the documents and IDs necessary to process your application when you begin the application process. If you need to obtain a certified copy of your birth certificate, make sure to order yours as soon as possible. Delays in processing vital records are a common issue for vital records agencies due to other closures during the pandemic.

While it’s true that some delays are still inevitable, and many DMV locations are still closed, most states have made efforts to mitigate backlogs and delays by offering online options. It’s always best to check with your local DMV to ensure you have the correct processing and application information to ensure your renewals or applications are submitted correctly for the quickest turnaround time.

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