So you need a driver’s license in North Carolina?

What You’ll Need

  • 4 documents to prove your identity, age, Social Security number, and residency in North Carolina
  • Registered and insured vehicle (for driving test)
    • Proof of liability insurance for vehicle
  • Payment
    • $20 for Learner’s Permit 
    • $40 for Class C driver’s license (valid for 8 years)

 

What You’ll Do

  • Step 1: Read the North Carolina Driver’s Handbook and take online practice exams to prepare for the written test
  • Step 2: Visit your nearest DMV office to apply for your Learner’s Permit
    • Submit the required documents & ID
    • Pass the written test
    • Pass the vision test
    • Have your photo taken
    • Submit payment
    • Receive a Temporary Driving Certificate
      • Receive your Learner’s Permit via U.S. mail within 15 days
  • Step 3: Practice driving to prepare for the road test
  • Step 4: Make an appointment at your nearest DMV office for the road test
  • Step 5: Travel to the DMV office on the day of the test
    • Submit the required documents & ID
    • Pass the vision test (if applicable)
    • Pass the written test (if applicable)
    • Pass the road test
    • Submit payment
    • Receive a Temporary Driving Permit
  • Step 6: Receive your new Class C driver’s license via U.S. mail within 15 business days

 

Caveats and Exceptions

  • Don’t need to practice driving before the road test?  Then you do not need a Learner’s Permit.
  • Don’t have a Social Security number?  Then you will need to provide documentation (Permanent Resident Card, 1-94 Form, Employment Authorization Card) to prove your legal presence in the U.S.
  • Under age 18?  Then you will need to complete the Graduated Driver Licensing program in order to obtain your full Class C driver’s license.
  • Need a REAL ID?  Then visit our North Carolina REAL ID [embedded link] page to find out what is required.