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info for new residents

Non-Commercial Driver's License

All new residents with out-of-state non-commercial driver's licenses must obtain a PA Driver's License within 60 days of establishing Pennsylvania residency. 

To apply, you must appear in person at one of our Driver License CentersPlease be aware that some state-to-state services may not be available on Saturdays.

You will be required to surrender your out-of-state driver's license (valid or expired six months or less) before PennDOT can issue you a PA Driver's License. You will need to take a vision-screening test and complete Form DL-180R (PDF), "Application for Pennsylvania Non-Commercial Driver's License By Out-of-State Non-CDL Driver." In addition, you will need to show proof of identification and residency and your Social Security card. Please visit our fees page for information on the fee for the product you will be requesting.

Although a knowledge test is not required for new residents with out-of-state driver's licenses which are valid or expired six months or less, The Pennsylvania Driver's Manual (PDF) is designed to help you become a safe driver and enjoy your driving privilege in our beautiful state.

A previous resident returning to Pennsylvania must meet all the same identification and residency requirements as a customer who has never been a PA resident.

All documents must show the same name and date of birth, or an association between the information on the documents. Additional documentation may be required if a connection between documents cannot be established (e.g. Marriage Certificate, Court Order of name change, Divorce Decree, etc.)

Out-of-state learner's permits cannot be transferred to Pennsylvania. In addition, if your out-of-state driver's license has been expired for more than six months, it cannot be transferred for a Pennsylvania Driver's License. You must apply for a Pennsylvania Learner's Permit (PDF) and complete all applicable knowledge and skills tests in order to obtain a Pennsylvania Driver's License.

Photo Identification (ID) Card 

A Photo ID card is a viable source of identification offered to individuals 10 years of age and older. To apply for a Photo ID card, you must appear in person at a PennDOT Driver License Center and present proof of identification and residency ( Please note: If you are under the age of 18, proof of residency is not required; however a parent, guardian or person in loco parentis must accompany you to a PennDOT Driver License Center), along with a completed Form DL-54A (PDF), "Application for Initial Photo Identification Card." If you have an out-of-state driver's license or Photo ID card, you will need to surrender it at the time of application for a Pennsylvania Photo ID card. Please visit our fees page for the cost of the product you are requesting.

A previous resident returning to Pennsylvania must meet all the same identification and residency requirements as a customer who has never been a PA resident. All documents must show the same name and date of birth, or an association between the information on the documents. Additional documentation may be required if a connection between the documents cannot be established (e.g. Marriage Certificate, Court Order of name change, Divorce Decree, etc.)

Commercial Driver's License (CDL)

All new residents with out-of-state CDL's must obtain a PA CDL within 30 days of establishing Pennsylvania residency. To apply, you must appear in person at one of our Driver License Centers. You will need to take a vision screening test and complete Form DL-180RCD (PDF), "Application for Pennsylvania Commercial Driver's License By Out-of-State CDL Driver". In addition, you will need to show proof of identification and residency and your Social Security card. Please visit our fees page for information on the fee for the product you will be requesting.

A previous resident returning to Pennsylvania must meet all the same identification and residency requirements as a customer who has never been a PA resident.

All documents must show the same name and date of birth, or an association between the information on the documents. Additional documentation may be required if a connection between the documents cannot be established (e.g. Marriage Certificate, Court Order of name change, Divorce Decree, etc.)

NOTE: HAZMAT and school bus endorsements are not transferable. For more information on transferring a CDL with a HAZMAT endorsement, please visit our HAZMAT page. For more information about how to obtain the school bus endorsement, please visit the How to Become a School Bus Driver page.

Temporary Driver's License/Photo ID Card

To mitigate the risk for fraud, including identity theft, PennDOT issues temporary driver's licenses and photo identification cards, which are valid for 15 days, to individuals who have never held a Pennsylvania driver's license or photo ID, i.e. new drivers, new photo ID card holders and new residents. During that 15-day period, PennDOT utilizes state-of-the-art facial recognition technology, FaceEXPLORER, to validate the individual's photograph does not match another photograph in our database under a different name(s). The temporary DL/photo ID card looks the same as the current DL/photo ID card, except the blue and yellow banners are gray, the word "temporary" is printed in red across the front and the expiry date is outlined in red. The product can be used by any business to validate name, age, address, etc., just as a permanent DL/Photo ID card.

Voter Registration and Organ Donor

When you visit a Photo License Center to have your photo license processed, you will be given the opportunity to make application to register to vote and the option to be listed as an organ donor.

If you say "yes" to organ donation, the words "ORGAN DONOR" will appear on your PA Driver's License and/or ID card.

If you make application to register to vote, you will be asked to answer a series of questions. You will be given a receipt as proof of your application for voter registration. The registration office of the county of your residence will send you an official voter identification card. If you do not receive your card within two weeks, you should contact your county voter registration office. Phone numbers for each county are located at the Pennsylvania Department of State website.

PennDOT uses state-of-the-art facial recognition technology when an individual has their photo taken for their driver's license/identification card renewal.

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