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Frequently asked questions: Driving records

What is a driving record?

It's a history of violations, convictions, collisions, and Departmental actions incurred by a driver over a period of time. It may not include the license original issue date. A copy of the record is referred to as either an Abstract of Driving Record (ADR) or driving record.

What types of driving records are available?
Type of driving record Who can get a copy What the record includes
  • The person named on the driving record
  • Attorneys
  • Law and justice agencies
  • Governmental agencies and their agents
  • Convictions
  • Violations
  • Collisions
  • Suspensions, revocations, and disqualifications
  • Deferred prosecutions
  • Failures to appear (FTA)
  • Employer Declaration Exemption
Used to create and renew commercial, noncommercial motor vehicle insurance, and life insurance policies.
  • The person named on the driving record
  • Insurance companies and their agents
3 year history of:
  • Convictions
  • Violations
  • Collisions
  • Failures to appear (FTA)
Used to determine if a driver should be employed.
  • The person named on the driving record
  • Employers and their agents
  • Prospective employers and their agents
  • Volunteer organizations
  • Transit authorities
  • School districts
  • Convictions
  • Violations
  • Collisions
  • Suspensions, revocations, and disqualifications
  • Deferred prosecutions
  • Failures to appear (FTA)
  • Employer Declaration Exemption
Alcohol and Drug Treatment
Used for referrals to drug and alcohol treatment facilities.
  • Alcohol/drug assessment or treatment agencies
  • The person named on the driving record
A 5-year driving history

*These records don't show violations and collisions for law enforcement officers, firefighters, tow trucks or Washington State Patrol officers that occurred while on duty, driving official vehicles.

How long will it take to get a copy of a driving record?

  • Online through License eXpress: You can print a copy within 24 hours.
  • By mail: Please allow 10–14 days.

Can employers or insurance companies tell anyone what's on my driving record?

No. Driving records are confidential and are provided only to those authorized by law. Insurance companies, employers, transit authorities, volunteer organizations, and school districts who get a copy of your driving record may not reveal your information to a third party.

Will my record show the original date my WA driver license was issued?

Only if your first license was issued after May 1, 1964. If it was issued before May 1, 1964, you may call us at 360.902.3900 (TTY: call 711) to request a status letter showing the original issue date.

What information is kept on a driving record and for how long?
Type of information kept How long kept
Convictions and violations—Most convictions, forfeitures of bail, or court findings stating an infraction was committed 5 years from conviction or adjudication date
Alcohol-related convictions Life
Vehicular Assault and Vehicular Homicide convictions Life
Deferred Prosecutions Life
Failure to appear or respond to a traffic citation or notice of infraction (FTA) Until the FTA is resolved, or 10 years from the date the court notifies us about it, whichever is earlier

(Note: The court may resubmit an unresolved FTA after the 10-year period. When the FTA is resolved, only the original ticket remains on the driving record.)
Collisions—Shows involvement, not fault, number of vehicles involved, whether they were legally parked or moving, whether the vehicles were occupied at the time of the collision, and whether the collision resulted in any injury or fatality
  • Non-commercial vehicles: 5 years from collision date
  • Commercial vehicles: 10 years from collision date
Departmental actions, such as suspensions, revocations, or disqualifications 5 years from final release date. Major withdrawals for commercial operators remain on for life.

What Washington State laws apply to driving records?

Related information

Questions? Need help?

Call us: 360.902.3900 (TTY: Call 711)

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