How to Transfer Your Out-of-State Drivers License to Texas
From the job opportunities in Texas' fast-growing cities to its natural beauty and its delicious BBQ, there are plenty of reasons to move to the Lone Star State. Though relocating to Texas can be a rewarding decision, out-of-state moves can also be stressful due to the logistical challenges. Among them, of course, is transferring your out-of-state license to Texas. Fortunately, if you follow these steps and you have a clean driving record, you'll have your Texas drivers license in no time.
Step 1: Get Your Vehicle Inspected
New residents with a valid out-of-state drivers license have 90 days to transfer it to Texas, but vehicle owners only have 30 days to register their car in the Lone Star State. Before you can register your car in Texas, you'll need to have it inspected at a Texas Department of Public Safety (DPS) certified inspection station. In Texas, vehicles must be inspected annually to ensure that all their safety features are in working order. Don't forget to bring along your proof of insurance to complete this step.
Step 2: Register Your Vehicle
Once your inspection is taken care of, the next step toward becoming a legal Texas driver is registering your vehicle at your county tax collector's office. To do this, you'll need to bring along:
- Proof of your completed vehicle inspection
- Your insurance card and your printed policy (if you still have an out-of-state plan) to ensure that you have the necessary coverage
- A completed 130-U application form
- Your car title or proof of ownership
Though registering your car in Texas is a fairly straightforward process, keep in mind that your initial registration can cost more than $200.
Step 3: Get Your Texas Drivers License
The final step toward becoming a legal Texas driver is turning in your out-of-state ID for a brand new Texas drivers license. To do this, you'll need to visit a Texas DPS office. Though the DPS doesn't allow you to make appointments for this type of visit, residents of the state's busiest metropolitan areas (Dallas, Houston, San Antonio and Austin) are able to add their names to the DPS's waiting list online.
On your visit to the DPS, you'll need to bring:
- Original documents proving your identity, social security number and legal status (more info on the required documents is available here)
- Proof of your Texas residency
- Your vehicle's registration and your insurance card
- Your out-of-state drivers license, which you'll be required to forfeit
Once you've completed this step, you're official ... almost. You'll get a temporary license at the DPS and your official Texas drivers license will be sent to you in the mail. Happy driving!