Learn whether you're eligible to renew or extend your driver license if it expires while you're outside the state of Washington (WA), and see the steps to do so.
Before you get started
If you're out of state when your WA state driver license expires, you may be eligible to renew or extend it if:
- It isn't suspended, revoked, surrendered, canceled, and
- You don't have any outstanding fees
Apply for a one-year extension
Use the Driver License Extension Form to apply to extend your driver license for one year if it will expire while you're out of Washington State. We'll send your extension to the address you provide on the application (we don't mail extensions to Washington State addresses). The extension starts on your license expiration date (usually your birthday). You must carry it with your expired license.
- Complete the Driver License Extension Form and print it on white paper.
- Mail the completed form with a check or money order for the $5 fee to:
Department of Licensing
PO Box 3907
Seattle, WA 98124-3907
- Please remember to enclose all necessary documents and fees with your completed application. We will deny your request if your application is incomplete.
Application for Motorcycle endorsements
You can get a license extension with a motorcycle endorsement. When the extension expires, you must reapply in person, take any necessary tests, and pay fees.
Application for Enhanced driver licenses (EDLs)
An EDL extension is only valid for driving. You won't be able to use it for border crossing.
Application for Commercial driver licenses (CDLs)
You can't get an extension for your CDL.
Renew your driver license by mail
You can now renew your driver license for either six or eight years. You can renew your license by mail if you:
- Don't plan to return one or more years after your license expires, and
- Have a Social Security number
If you renew your license by mail, it will not contain a photo and your driver license won't be valid for identification purposes. It will only be valid for driving. You may restore the photo and signature by visiting a driver licensing office.
- Submit a Driver License Renewal/Replacement Request While Out-of-State form
- If you have a motorcycle endorsement and don't want to keep it, submit a Notice of Motorcycle Endorsement Surrender form (English, Español, Русский, and more)
- If you have a Commercial Driver License (CDL), submit Commercial Driver License Notice of Surrender form (English, Español, Русский, and more)
- Mail necessary forms with check or money order (payable to Department of Licensing) to:
Department of Licensing
PO Box 9048
Olympia, WA 98507-9048
Can I renew my CDL by mail?
You cannot renew a CDL by mail. However, you can surrender it and renew your regular driver license by submitting a Commercial Driver's Notice of Surrender form with your renewal.
You'll have up to 1 year to reinstate your CDL without providing proof of training or taking required tests. When you return to Washington, visit a driver licensing office to reinstate your CDL.
For military personnel
Your license remains valid as long as you're on active duty, and 90 days after your discharge date. You don't need to renew during the term of your military service if you're:
- A member of the armed forces or National Guard on active duty
- A reservist called to duty for 180 days or more
- The spouse or dependent of an active member of the military
Name changes while out of state
If you want to change the name on your driver license, you can only do so in person at a driver licensing office. You can still request an extension or renewal, but it'll show the name currently on your license.