Driver License (DL) Expiration Dates Extended, DL Offices Closed in Light of COVID-19 Outbreak
FOR IMMEDIATE DISTRIBUTION PRESS RELEASE
March 19, 2020 Media and Communications Office
AUSTIN – At the direction of Governor Greg Abbott and in light of the governor’s State of Disaster Declaration related to the coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19), the Texas Department of Public Safety (DPS) has been directed to extend the expiration date of Texas identification cards (ID), driver licenses (DL), commercial DLs (CDL) and election identification certificates (EIC). Additionally, the department has been directed to close DL offices, effective Thursday, March 19, until directed to reopen by the governor. These actions come as the state works to limit the ongoing spread of COVID-19 by increasing social distancing in communities.
DRIVER LICENSE OFFICE CLOSURES
Effective Thursday, March 19, 2020, DL offices across the state have been closed until further notice. The temporary closure does not apply to individuals seeking an initial CDL. A number of DL offices across the state are designated as CDL sites — these offices will offer CDL testing by appointment only. If you already have a CDL skills test scheduled, that appointment remains valid. For those needing to schedule a CDL test, you can schedule an appointment by sending an email to firstname.lastname@example.org. Please include your name, DL number, date of birth, telephone number, email address and your preferred office location in your request.
DRIVER LICENSE EXTENSION
In accordance with section 418.016 of the Texas Government Code, the Office of the Governor approved DPS’ request to suspend provisions of the Texas Transportation Code to the extent necessary to delay the expiration of Texas DL/CDL/ID/EIC cards. This means that if your Texas DL/CDL/ID/EIC card expires on or after March 13, 2020, it falls under the period that encompasses the State of Disaster Declaration related to COVID-19 and will remain valid for 60 days after which time DPS issues public notice that the extension period for this disaster declaration has been lifted.
It’s important to note that this extension applies to the expiration date only. A person who is not eligible to drive due to an active enforcement action (suspension, revocation or denial) may use the card for identity purposes only.
DPS is communicating with law enforcement agencies across the state to notify and inform them about the changes and what the extension means for their interactions with the public.
ONLINE SERVICES AVAILABLE FOR TEXANS
The majority of customers who come into Texas DL offices (for example, 3.2 million people in Fiscal Year 2019) don’t have to. These customers can actually conduct their transaction online, by phone or by mail. DPS encourages Texans to check the expiration date on their card and call 1-866-DL-RENEW (1-886-357-3639) or visit Texas.gov to see if you’re eligible to conduct your transaction online, particularly in light of the closures due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
The fee is the same for online, in-person and telephone renewals. For additional information about renewing your DL or ID card, visit the DPS website. Address changes and replacement of a lost DL or ID can also be taken care of online (or by mail) in many instances. Find out if you are eligible for online services by visiting Texas.gov.
When will your offices reopen?
The department continues to be in constant communication with state leadership regarding this rapidly changing situation. The department will follow guidelines set by the governor as to when our offices will reopen and will keep the public informed as the situation continues to evolve.
DPS DL COVID-19 Informational Web Page
Governor Abbott, DPS Waive Expiration Dates for Driver Licenses, March 18, 2020 (view here)
Governor Abbott Announces Temporary Closure of Driver License Offices, March 18, 2020 (view here)
DPS Takes Preventative Measures Against COVID-19, Encourages Texans to do the Same, March 12, 2020 (view here)
DPS Coordinates with Public Health Authorities as Two Employees Test Positive for COVID-19
Texas Department of Motor Vehicles
FOR IMMEDIATE DISTRIBUTION PRESS RELEASE
March 19, 2020 Media and Communications Office
AUSTIN – The Texas Department of Public Safety (DPS) is reporting to the Public Health Authorities that two DPS employees have tested positive for COVID-19. Public safety is our number one concern, and the department will work in conjunction with public health authorities to provide any additional information necessary to notify the public of these positive cases. DPS continues to follow guidelines set by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and the Texas Department of State Health Services (DSHS) related to the COVID-19 pandemic.
More information is available on our website.
Important Information Regarding Vehicle Registration, Vehicle Titling, and Disabled Parking Placard Requirements
In an effort to reduce the need for in-person transactions, the Texas Department of Motor Vehicles (TxDMV) worked with Governor Greg Abbott and our stakeholders to temporarily waive certain requirements for vehicle registration, vehicle titling and disabled parking placards.
On March 13, 2020, Governor Greg Abbott issued a proclamation, declaring a state of disaster for all counties in Texas due to the threat of COVID-19. Governor Abbott also issued a statement on March 16, 2020, granting a temporary extension to obtain initial registration, renewal of registration, vehicle titling, and renewal of a permanent disabled parking placard. Governor Abbott also granted a temporary extension for an individual with an expired 30-day temporary permit to obtain another permit or Texas registration.
The temporary waiver applies to vehicle owners in all Texas counties as set forth in the above-referenced proclamation and statement. This temporary waiver is in effect until 60 days after TxDMV notifies the public that normal vehicle registration, vehicle titling and related services have resumed. The 60-day period will be the same for all counties.
The purpose of the waiver is to prevent customers from having to physically visit a county tax assessor-collector office to obtain initial registration, to obtain a 30-day temporary permit, to transfer title; or to renew registration or a permanent disabled parking placard. Customers may continue to renew their registration online at www.TxDMV.gov. At this time, TxDMV continues to fill online registration sticker requests and process all other online services.
TxDMV has informed law enforcement agencies and the offices of the county tax assessor-collectors of the temporary waiver. As soon as new information is available, we will provide further updates via social media and at https://www.txdmv.gov/covid-19.
COVID-19 / Coronavirus Emergency Information
The Texas Department of Motor Vehicles (TxDMV) is monitoring the impacts of the Covid-19/Coronavirus closely and working with state officials, county tax assessor-collectors and others to maintain or restore services in affected areas.
All TxDMV office will be closed to the public for in-person transactions as of the close of business on March 18. Services and support will continue to be provided by mail, email, and phone while in-person services are unavailable.
As of March 20, the following Tax Assessor-Collector offices are closed or operating under revised schedules:
Dallas County - closed, will assist via email/phone
For additional information regarding updates, full list of tax assessor office closures, title and registration service, and FAQ’s click here.
Movement of Oversize/Overweight Loads in Texas Disaster Areas
Commercial Vehicle registration requirements to travel in and through the state of Texas are temporarily suspended by order of Texas Governor Greg Abbott. This is to make it faster and easier for operators of commercial vehicles to provide COVID-19 disaster relief assistance.
These suspensions apply to the transportation of supplies, medical equipment, and similar materials that are necessary for preparing for, responding to, and mitigating the spread of novel coronavirus (COVID-19)
A commercial motor vehicle qualifies for the temporary suspension of International Registration Plan (IRP) requirements if the vehicle is registered in one of the 48 contiguous states and is not currently registered under IRP. The suspension covers the vehicle registration requirements for operators of commercial motor vehicles that are providing assistance to any state pursuant to the disaster declarations for those states.
Additionally, the requirements to obtain a 72-/144-hour temporary registration permit also are suspended for those commercial motor vehicles that are not eligible for IRP registration.
These suspensions do not apply to safety and insurance requirements.
No action on your part is required to qualify for the temporary waivers. Instead print and keep the following documentation in the cab of the vehicle, the Governor’s Proclamation and the TxDMV’s Suspension of Size and Weight Requirements. Both are found here: https://www.txdmv.gov/motor-carriers
These suspensions remain in effect until terminated by Governor Abbott or until the March 13, 2020 disaster declaration is lifted or expires.