How to Get Your Texas Driver’s License as a New Resident

Updated: 10/07/2022
Did you just move? Are you new to Texas? Getting your Texas Driver’s License is easy with just a few simple steps.

How to Get Your Texas Driver’s License as a New Resident
The state of Texas is experiencing continued growth rates as more people and families are taking advantage of all that the Lone Star State has to offer. Whether you are moving to Texas for a job, family, or any other reason, one of the first things you will need to do is get a valid Texas driver’s license.
Like any other state, the process can be time-consuming and stressful. Knowing what to expect going in can help to ease anxieties and get you on the road as a legal Texas driver well within the 90-day window given to new residents to transfer their license after moving.

Steps New Residents Take to Get Texas Driver’s License
It is difficult to predict or control how long or how smoothly the process will go at the Department of Public Safety on any given day or at any given time. The best you can do is being completely prepared with the proper and updated information and hope for a quick resolution.

1. Collect Needed Documents
You will need to obtain identification proof and submit a complete license application form to get issued a Texas driver’s license. The last thing you want to happen is to go through the whole process, wait in line, only to find out you do not have what you need. The following information and documents will need to be presented at your local DPS office. Examples of what will suffice for some of these items can be found on the Texas DPS website here.
● Proof of United States citizenship or evidence of lawful presence if you are not a citizen
● Proof of Texas residency
● Proof of identity
● Social security card or other proof of social security number
● Valid license from the state in which you previously resided
● Evidence of Texas Vehicle Registration for vehicles you own, or signed statement affirming you do not own a vehicle
● Proof of insurance for all vehicles
● Completed Texas driver’s license application
● $25 application fee

2. Get in Line at the DPS
Comedians and late-night talk show hosts have been poking fun at local DPS offices for years since it can be challenging during peak hours or especially busy times. Getting there early and grabbing one of the top spots can help speed up the process, and sometimes arriving late in the day can get you in and out without much of a wait. The key is to be patient and time it just right.
Another option is to reserve a spot at your nearest DPS office online, though this will still just put you in line with others doing the same thing and does nothing to guarantee there will be no wait.
Once your number is called, you will be expected to:
● Turn in your old license
● Present paperwork and documents outlined above
● Pay the $25 application fee
● Pass vision test
● Provide thumbprint
● Take your driver’s license photo

Official License Mailed
Texas DPS offices do not print new driver’s licenses on location. You will be issued a temporary paper license to carry with you until the new, official license arrives in the mail

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For recent transplants and lifetime residents alike, Premier Defensive Driving offers an affordable, simple online course on defensive driving that Texas drivers use to have traffic tickets dismissed and removed from their permanent driving records. The video-based classwork is easy to navigate, takes just a few hours, and when you are done, you will be presented with a certificate of completion that can be taken to any traffic court in Texas.
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