I just moved to Florida. How do I get my Florida license and get my vehicle registered?
Florida is home to year-round fun in the sun and tons of beaches and amusement parks. When you’re a new resident of the Sunshine State, there are steps you need to follow to transfer your driver’s license and vehicle registration.
How to Transfer Your Driver’s License to the State of Florida
As a new resident of Florida, you are required to transfer your out-of-state driver’s license to a Florida license within 30 days of establishing residency in the state. Establishing residency in the state of Florida can include registering to vote, starting employment or school, or living in the state for more than six consecutive months. Here’s what you need to know about transferring your driver’s license and vehicle registration to the state of Florida.
Schedule an Appointment to Transfer Your Driver’s License to Florida
The first step you need to take is to schedule an appointment with the Florida Department of Highway Safety and Motor Vehicles (FL DHSMV). Be advised that DMV appointments fill quickly in Florida, so it’s best to book your appointment at least one to two weeks in advance. Appointments are not required, so, you can walk in to your local FL DMV, but it’s likely you will experience long wait times.
Required Documents to Transfer Your Driver’s License to a Florida Driver’s License
The best way to avoid delays and possible penalties is to be prepared when you visit your local FL DMV branch. You need to have the following items when you visit your local Florida DMV office:
Proof of Identification
- Valid U.S. passport
- Birth certificate
- Certificate of Citizenship and/or Naturalization
Proof of Social Security Number
- Social security card
- W-2 form
- Paycheck or paystub
- SSA-1099 (can be any 1099, but not handwritten)
Proof of Residential Address
- Utility bill
- Residential lease agreement
- House deed
- Florida voter registration card
- Homeowner insurance policy or bill
- Valid vehicle insurance policy or bill
Valid Out-of-State Driver’s License
- An unexpired, valid driver’s license from one of the 50 United States
- Payment for the $48 Florida driver’s license fee (payable by check, cash, or credit/debit)
Passing the Vision Test
In the state of Florida, a vision test is only required when you’re transferring your driver’s license from a state other than Florida. As a new resident of this state, you will not be required to take the driving knowledge or knowledge tests. These vision tests can be performed at your local FL DHSMV office, at a licensed Florida doctor’s office, or at a federally established veteran’s hospital. If you choose to have your vision test performed outside an FL DMV office, the vision test must be performed by a medical doctor, physician, optometrist, or osteopathic physician. You are required to have a vision score of 20/40 or better.
How to Obtain a Temporary Florida License
In order to obtain a temporary Florida driver’s license, the FL DMV must first accept the required documents, payment for all applicable fees, and vision test results. Be advised, it takes time to create a physical Florida driver’s license that discloses information regarding your information, such as your name, new FL address, weight, height, and other specifics. You will be issued a temporary FL driver’s license to carry with you until you receive your permanent FL driver’s license within 7 to 10 business days of the time your documents and fees are accepted. Your physical driver’s license will be mailed to the address you provided.
Now that you are aware of the steps you need to take to transfer your driver’s license to the state of Florida, we can move on to registering your out-of-state vehicle in Florida.
Registering Your Out-of-State Vehicle in Florida
As a new resident of Florida, you are required to register your out-of-state vehicle in Florida within 30 days of establishing residency in this state, whether the vehicle is new or used.
When you are new to the state of Florida, you are required to:
- Obtain FL auto insurance
- Verify the VIN number
- Prepare and submit the necessary documents to your local FL DMV branch
- Pay all applicable vehicle title/registration fees and sales tax
The documents you are required to submit to your local FL DMV office to successfully complete an out-of-state vehicle title transfer in Florida are:
- Application for Certificate of Title With/Without Registration ([Form HSMV 82040](https://flhsmv.gov/pdf/forms/82040.pdf))
- Proof of identity of all owners (such as a valid FL driver’s license or ID card)
- Proof of a valid FL auto insurance policy
- The original out-of-state vehicle title
- Vehicle Identification Number (VIN) verification
- Payment for all applicable vehicle fees and FL sales tax
Once you provide these documents to your local Florida DMV office, you can complete the vehicle title/registration transfer process.
The out-of-state vehicle title/registration transfer must be performed in person at your local FL DMV office. Most residents of this state can perform a vehicle title transfer/registration online or by mail.
Florida DMV Branch Locations
There are multiple locations in Florida where you can successfully transfer your out-of-state driver’s license and vehicle registration.
Florida Department of Motor Vehicles
7795 W Flagler St Ste 82C
Miami, FL 33144
Monday – Friday (8 AM – 5 PM)
Saturday and Sunday (Closed)
Florida DMV – Mortgage Office
1135 Banks Road
Margate, FL 33063
Monday, Tuesday, Thursday, and Friday (8 AM – 5 PM)
Wednesday (8:30 AM – 5 PM)
Saturday and Sunday (Closed)
Florida DMV – Ft. Lauderdale Office
1113 N. Federal Highway
Ft. Lauderdale, FL, 33304
Monday-Friday (9 AM – 5 PM)
Saturday (9 AM – 5 PM)
Florida Driver’s License and Vehicle Registration Transfer Q&A
Q. How long can you live in Florida with an out-of-state license?
Once you establish residency in Florida, you have 30 days to obtain a Florida driver’s license. If you can’t provide the necessary documentation, you may be given a 60-day temporary permit if your out-of-state driver’s license is valid and not expired.
Q. How long after moving to Florida do I have to register my car?
The state of Florida gives you 10 days after you establish residency in the state to register your vehicle.
Q. Do I need proof of residency to get a Florida driver’s license?
Yes. You are required to provide proof of Residency to obtain a valid Florida driver’s license. You need to submit a rental lease agreement, utility bill, or similar type of proof that you are established in the state of Florida.
Q. How much does it cost to get your car registered in Florida?
The initial vehicle registration fee in Florida is $225. This fee must be paid in person at your local FL DMV office.
Q. Can I register my car in Florida with an out-of-state license?
Yes. You can register your vehicle in Florida with an out-of-state driver’s license. You may be required to provide proof of a valid Florida auto insurance policy, the vehicle’s title, and the bill of sale.
Q. Can I live in Florida and have a car registered in another state?
No. There are only 8 states that allow you to live in one state and have a vehicle registered in a different state, and Florida is not one of these states.
Q. How much does it cost to register a car in Florida from another state?
In the state of Florida, new vehicle owners can expect to pay $77.25. An out-of-state Florida registration is $85.25 when you pay for a duplicate vehicle title.
Q. Does Florida require a smog check or vehicle inspection?
No. There are no smog check requirements for the state of Florida.