How Do I? New to Illinois Driving


Find the Secretary of State Facility closest to me?
Facility Finder


Get an Illinois driver's license?
Drivers moving to Illinois may use their valid driver's license from their home state or country for 90 days. You may obtain an Illinois driver's license or identification card only if you are becoming a legal resident of Illinois. If you have a valid driver's license from another state or country, you may use it to drive in Illinois throughout your stay (if you do not plan to become a permanent resident of this state). Illinois does not recognize the international driver's license.

To obtain a new driver's license, you must visit a Secretary of State facility to surrender your out-of-state license and pass a vision screening, written exam and possibly a drive exam. Proper identification must be presented so we can verify your full name, date of birth, social security number, Illinois residency and written signature. See Acceptable Identification Documents.


Get Illinois License Plates?
New residents have 30 days to apply for an Illinois title and registration after establishing residence, provided the vehicle is properly registered in another jurisdiction. See the Vehicle Title and Registration for New Residents brochure for more information about the documents you will need to apply. You must visit a Secretary of State facility.


Get an Illinois Driver's License if I am a first-time driver?
You must be at least 16 years of age and have successfully completed an approved driver education course (see Graduated Driver's License section) or be at least 18 years of age. Proper identification must be presented at a Secretary of State facility so we can verify your full name, date of birth, social security number, Illinois residency and written signature. See Acceptable Identification Documents.


Determine if I can drive in Illinois while visiting from another country?
You may drive in Illinois with your valid license from your own country during your stay. This also applies to your spouse and children living with you while attending an Illinois college or university. Please to read Illinois Rules of the Road.

However, an International License is not valid in the State of Illinois


Find the driving laws in Illinois?
The Illinois Rules of the Road book will have all the information you need to know to drive in Illinois.


Know if I need insurance to drive in Illinois?
Illinois has a mandatory insurance law. Any one that drives in the state of Illinois must have insurance. See the Mandatory Insurance section for more information.


Find information regarding Illinois' seat belt law?
Illinois law requires all drivers and front-seat passengers age 8 and older to wear safety belts even if the vehicle is equipped with air bags. Passengers under age 8 must be secured in an appropriate child restraint system as covered by the Child Passenger Protection Act. When riding in a truck with only a front seat equipped with seat belts, a child under age 8 must be secured in an appropriate child restraint system. For more information, please see the Illinois Rules of the Road, Chapter 4 or the Traffic Safety section.