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How to Renew a Driver License in South Carolina

South Carolina drivers license renewal is processed by the South Carolina DMV. The driver license renewal process occurs on two schedules, depending on motorists’ ages and when they last renewed their licenses. Many drivers wonder “Can you renew your license online?” as this was once an option. Drivers can no longer choose “renew drivers license online,” as they must now complete a vision test when doing so. While online drivers license renewal is no longer available, motorists may still renew credentials by mail or in person. Residents may learn how to renew drivers license ID to get started.

When to Renew South Carolina Drivers Licenses

The DMV license renewal process occurs every five or 10 years. Drivers may be eligible to renew drivers license credentials every 10 years if they are under 65 years of age and renew in person. Drivers under the age of 65 who renew an SC driver license by mail will receive a five-year drivers license. When renewing drivers license credentials, all drivers older than 65 years of age will receive a five-year drivers license regardless of whether they renew by mail or in person. Motorists should refer to the expiration date listed on their license and complete their driving license renewal prior to that date.

If you have an expired drivers license in SC, then you must renew your license as soon as possible. Using an expired driving license can lead to a fine or traffic citation. If your license has been expired for less than nine months, then you can renew your drivers license as if it was not expired using the methods detailed below. When a drivers license has been expired for nine months or more, you must visit a South Carolina Department of Motor Vehicles (SCDMV) office in person. Having a drivers license that expired more than nine months ago will require you to retake driving knowledge and skills tests.

Where to Renew Drivers License in South Carolina in Person

The option to complete drivers license renewal online ended in the year 2008. However, renewing an SC drivers license in person is an option for all drivers. Some SC drivers may only renew drivers licenses in person at a DMV office. This includes, but is not limited to: drivers over the age of 65, drivers who are not U.S. citizens, drivers who renewed their license by mail during the last renewal period and drivers who fail to meet other eligibility requirements for renewing their license by mail.

When renewing drivers licenses in person, you must visit a South Carolina DMV branch and be prepared to make a payment and provide your vehicle insurance information. The driving license renewal fee varies based on whether you obtain a 10-year license or a five-year license. If you have acquired more than five points on your driving record over the past two years, then be prepared to retake the SCDMV driving knowledge test. All drivers who renew a driving license in person may be subject to a vision test as well.

International customers who need to renew an SC drivers license can only do so in person at certain SCDMV offices. The international drivers license renewal process cannot be completed at all DMV offices. Non-U.S. citizens who hold an SC drivers license must provide every possible document that proves their identities. International customers should be prepared to take a vision test or provide documentation from a doctor proving that their vision meets the SCDMV’s requirements. A driving license renewal fee will also be charged.

How to Renew a Drivers License in South Carolina by Mail

South Carolina drivers can renew drivers licenses by mail to receive a license that is valid for five years. Drivers are eligible to renew a South Carolina driver license by mail if they are a U.S. citizen and do not have a license that has not been expired for more than nine months. Motorists may not renew by mail if they:

  • Have more than five points on their driving record from the past two years.
  • Hold a suspended drivers license.
  • Are listed in the SCDMV database as convicted violent offenders.
  • Renewed their license by mail last time.
  • Have a commercial drivers license, conditional license or special restricted license.

If you meet the above requirements, then you can complete the South Carolina DMV’s Renew a Driver’s License by Mail form (SCDMV Form DL-63). With your form, include a check or money order made out to the SCDMV. The drivers license renewal fee varies, so it is best to check with the DMV before sending payment. Do not send cash in the mail. Due to processing times, the DMV requires approximately three weeks to complete drivers license renewals received through the mail. Therefore, you should renew your SC drivers license at least three weeks before the expiration date listed on your license. You can send your South Carolina drivers license renewal form and payment to:

SCDMV

Alternative Media

P.O. Box 1498

Blythewood, SC 29016-0035

Renewing South Carolina Drivers License as a Military Member

South Carolina military members and their family members can renew a drivers license by mail if they are stationed outside of SC. To renew drivers licenses, South Carolina military members will need to:

  • Complete the Mail-In Renewal Application (SCDMV Form DL-63) and provide their military mailing address.
  • Include a current color photograph of themselves that includes the top of their head to their shoulders without their face or head being covered.
  • Attach military orders that show proof of continuous active duty service outside of South Carolina.
  • Include a check made out to the SCDMV.

Military members will mail these drivers license renewal items to the SCDMV address listed in the section above.

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