Department of Motor Vehicles (DMV)

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Identifications Cards

Identification cards are issued to any persons at least 5 years of age and who are residents of South Carolina, and do not have a valid South Carolina driver's license or beginner's permit. You may apply for an ID card by completing Form 447-NC and presenting proper identification at your local DMV office. The card expires five years after the issue date. Identification cards are free to citizens who are 17 years of age or older. There is a $5.00 fee for persons between the ages of 5 and 16.

 

If you wish to renew your identification card and it is expired:

  • LESS than nine months from the expiration date on the identification card, the renewal process is the same as if it was not expired.  

  • MORE than nine months from the expiration date on the identification card than you MUST:  

    • present proof of residency document; and 

    • be prepared to present proof of identity and proof of social security number only if DMV is not able to locate these source documents in their system.  

    • Beginner Permit

 

 

Applicants with a Valid Beginner Permit from Another State

Beginner's permits issued in other states may be used to drive in SC. 

 

If you are a South Carolina resident you may exchange your out-of-state beginner's permit for a South Carolina credential.

The fee is $2.00 for the knowledge test and $2.50 for the beginner's permit.

Requirements To Get A License For The First Time

All applicants must fulfill these requirements

  • Held a beginner’s permit for 180 days

  • Bring your beginner's permit to the DMV on the 181st day or later.

  • Pass the vision and road skills tests.

  • If you fail the skills test on the 1st or 2nd attempt to pass you must wait two weeks before you are eligible to be re-tested. If you fail on the 3rd or subsequent attempt you must wait 60 days before you are eligible to be re-tested.

 

 

Sex Offender Registry Law

Note that Section 23-3-460 of the SC Code of Laws states that a person who has been convicted anywhere of an offense listed in 23-3-430 must register with the county sheriff within 10 days of establishing residency in South Carolina. A copy of the Sex Offender Registry Law is available upon request.

    • If your beginner's permit has expired, you must take the vision and knowledge tests to obtain a South Carolina beginner's permit.

    • If your beginner's permit is valid and you have had your out-of-state beginner's permit for at least 180 days, you may take the vision and skills test top apply for your SC driver's license. Application can be made on the 181st day or anytime thereafter. The time that you held the out-of-state beginner's permit will count toward the 180 day period.

    • If you fail the skills test on your first attempt, you must wait two weeks to re-test regardless of your age. If you are issued a SC beginner's permit, the time that you held an out-of-state beginner's permit count toward the 180-day period.

Identification cards are issued to any persons at least 5 years of age and who are residents of South Carolina, and do not have a valid South Carolina driver's license or beginner's permit. You may apply for an ID card by completing Form 447-NC and presenting proper identification at your local DMV office. The card expires five years after the issue date. Identification cards are free to citizens who are 17 years of age or older. There is a $5.00 fee for persons between the ages of 5 and 16.

 

If you wish to renew your identification card and it is expired:

  • LESS than nine months from the expiration date on the identification card, the renewal process is the same as if it was not expired.  

  • MORE than nine months from the expiration date on the identification card than you MUST:  

    • present proof of residency document; and 

    • be prepared to present proof of identity and proof of social security number only if DMV is not able to locate these source documents in their system.  

Beginner Permits

Beginner Permits Requirements 

  • At least 15 years old. If you are under 18 years of age, you must bring your parent or legally appointed guardian with you to sign your application.

  • You must bring your birth certificate, social security card, and proof of residency. Review our Accepted Forms of Identification for more information.

  • ​You must pass the vision test, and the knowledge test for this type of license

All applicants must fulfill these requirements

  • Held a beginner’s permit for 180 days

  • Bring your beginner's permit to the DMV on the 181st day or later.

  • Pass the vision and road skills tests.

  • If you fail the skills test on the 1st or 2nd attempt to pass you must wait two weeks before you are eligible to be re-tested.

  • If you fail on the 3rd or subsequent attempt you must wait 60 days before you are eligible to be re-tested.

The South Carolina Driver's Manual is a great source for all drivers, especially if you're getting ready to apply for a SC driver's license.

The main subjects include:

  • Rules of the road.

  • Driver's license classes.

  • The DMV road test in SC.

  • Traffic signs, vehicle safety and speed limits.

If you'd like to obtain a hard copy of the driving manual: visit your local SC DMV office

Although studying the SC DMV manual is a great way to prepare for the written test, it can be a little time consuming. You can also prepare with an online practice test. You can slash your study time by quizzing yourself with refreshable questions, and give yourself the prep you need to pass your exam on the first try!

Accepted Forms of Identification

Proof of S.C. Residency

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