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Receiving Your Driver's License or ID Card Through the Mail
The BMV mails all new, renewed, amended, or replacement credentials (driver’s licenses, learner’s permits or identification cards) from a government-run, secure location. Customers will receive these credentials at their mailing address following an extensive verification process of source documents.
Why can’t I obtain my credential at a license branch?
Permanent credentials are now being printed at a government-run, secure location. This security measure will help the BMV combat fraud by providing time to verify applicant information before a permanent credential is issued.
What happens after I provide my source documents to branch employees?
In the central issuance process, the BMV verifies your identity and lawful status and confirms that you do not already hold a credential in your name or another name, and that your driving privileges are not suspended (if applicable). The license branch employee will take your documents, electronically scan them and then return the original documents to you before you leave the license branch. The scanned documents will then be reviewed by BMV employees before your permanent credential is mailed to you.
Do other states use this new procedure?
Yes, 38 states mail credentials from a central printing shop.
Is it safe to mail my credential? The process used to mail credentials is similar to that used by the financial services industry to mail credit and debit cards.
Will I have to do anything different to apply for or renew a credential?
No, the application process is the same as outlined in the new Real ID document requirements section. You will visit a license branch and follow the same procedures: your photo will be taken, you will take the vision test, provide the required source documents, and pay the required fees.
What will change is that you will be given an interim driver's license or learner permit at the branch rather than your permanent credential if you are a new Indiana resident, if you are getting your first Indiana credential, or if your Indiana credential is expired. You will receive your permanent credential at your mailing address within 14 days, provided there are no issues with your application or documentation. If there are issues with your application or documentation, you will be contacted by a BMV representative.
You will not receive an interim identification card unless the date of your application is within 30 days of an election. If you receive an interim identification card within 30 days of an election, it will only be accepted for voting identification purposes. Your permanent identification card will arrive at your mailing address within 14 days, provided there are no issues with your application or documentation. If there are issues with your application or documentation, you will be contacted by a BMV representative.
Why is the BMV changing to central issuance of credentials?
Central issuance is another way that the BMV is combating identity theft and driver’s license fraud.
What happens after I provide my documents to branch employees?
In the central issuance process, the BMV verifies your identity and lawful status and confirms that you do not already hold a credential in your name or another name, and that your driving privileges are not suspended (if applicable).
What if my permanent credential does not arrive in the mail?
If you do not receive your permanent credential within 14 days, call the BMV at 888-692-6841. The customer service staff will research your application and confirm your mailing address. You may also track the progress of your application through your myBMV online account.
If you have called the BMV at 1-888-myBMV-411 and we have not been able to resolve your issue, please return to a license branch and you will be issued a new interim driver's license, learner’s permit, or identification card, if necessary.
How can I avoid having any delays in important personal or business transactions that require photo identification?Please plan ahead and do not allow your credential to expire before you are about to conduct a transaction that involves photo identification. The process to mail a Real ID credential will take approximately 14 days. To help avoid delays, you can renew your credential up to one year before expiration.
If my Indiana driver’s license expires the day I go to a branch what happens?
You would receive an extension and retain your current driver's license.
When would I get to keep my Indiana credential?
If you already have a non-commercial Indiana credential, and you are not changing credential types or amending information on the credential, you will keep the card and receive a printed 30-day extension. If your credential has already, or will, expire during the 14 days it will take to mail your permanent credential, your paper 30-day extension shall serve as your credential. This credential can be used for identification purposes even if it is expired. Your driver's license would still be acceptable as authorization to operate a vehicle.
In what instances would I receive an interim driver's license?
You would receive an interim driver's license if you are a new Indiana resident or if you are receiving a driver's license for the first time.
How will I get my driver's license if I am moving to Indiana from another state?
If you are moving to Indiana and applying for a driver's license, you would need to supply all the required source documents, and pass the knowledge exam and vision screening. If your out-of-state driver's license has expired you may be required to pass a driving skills exam. After presenting your source documents, you would receive an interim driver's license that would not be valid for identification. You would receive your permanent driver's license in the mail within 14 days, provided there are no issues with your application or documentation. If there are issues with your application or documentation, you will be contacted by a BMV representative.
If I am getting my driver's license for the first time, what type of license will I receive at the license branch?
If you are getting your driver's license for the first time, you will need to follow all the document requirements and pass the required exams. After you have passed the exams, you will receive an interim driver's license that would allow you to drive but would not be valid for identification. You would receive your permanent driver's license in the mail within 14 days, provided there are no issues with your application or documentation. If there are issues with your application or documentation, you will be contacted by a BMV representative.
What happens if I need to get my credential on the same day?
Due to these new security regulations, it is not possible to receive your permanent credential on the same day that you apply for it. If you are renewing your driver's license, you will keep your current license and receive a 30-day extension. Please plan ahead and remember that it will take approximately 14 days to receive your permanent driver's license. To avoid delays, you can renew your driver's license up to one year before it expires.
Can I have my credential mailed to a different address than is on the card?
You may request a mailing address in your BMV file that is different from your residential address. The credential will be sent to the mailing address.
Can I get another interim credential if the original was lost or destroyed?
You may obtain a duplicate interim credential if your original was lost or destroyed. You must visit a BMV license branch and present the required documents. The replacement interim credential will be a reprint of the original interim credential.
Does my interim credential expire?
Yes, the interim credential will be valid for 30 days from the date of issuance.
Will my interim credential be accepted by businesses and other government agencies as a form of photo identification?
It is up to the individual retail establishment whether to accept the interim credential as valid identification. The BMV has communicated about central issuance to businesses and government agencies that regularly require identification. It is recommended that you carry an additional form of identification in case a business requests it.
Will my interim credential allow me to vote in an election?
Will my interim driver’s license allow me to board an airplane?
No. However, if you are renewing your license, you can continue to use your current driver’s license with the interim extension. According to U.S. Transportation Security Administration, passengers who do not or cannot present an acceptable identification will have to provide information to the Transportation Security Officer performing Travel Document Checking duties in order to verify their identity. Passengers who are cleared through this process may be subject to additional screening. Passengers whose identity cannot be verified by TSA may not be allowed to go through the checkpoint or onto an airplane.
If my credential expires on my day of travel, can I board an airplane?
Will I pay more money to obtain the interim credential?
No, the cost for credentials will remain the same.
If I move after applying for a credential, what address will appear on the card?
The address will be the one that you provided at the time of application. You will be asked to sign an affidavit confirming your mailing address.
If there are errors on my card, how do I request a correction?
To reduce errors, please verify all information before you leave the branch. If there is incorrect information on the permanent card, please return to a license branch.
If my card is returned by the post office to the BMV, will you call me?
No, we will not call a customer whose credential has been returned by the U.S. Postal Service. If you have not received your card within 14 days, please call the BMV at 888-692-6841. It is very important to make sure that you provide the license branch with your correct mailing address so that you can receive your credential in the mail. BMV mail is not forwarded.
What if I Still Have Questions?
If you have questions, you can call the BMV toll-free at 888-692-6841 and speak with a customer service representative for help, or visit any Indiana license branch for assistance.