California DMV issues 60-day delay for some renewals due to coronavirus

Posted at 12:42 PM, Mar 17, 2020
and last updated 2020-03-17 15:50:39-04

SAN DIEGO (KGTV) — The California Department of Motor Vehicles is delaying some driver license and vehicle registration services for 60 days due to the coronavirus pandemic.

The DMV said the action will protect customers from coming to offices and employees who are working in office during the outbreak.

"The DMV is taking this action so that at-risk populations, including seniors and those with underlying health conditions, can avoid required visits to DMV field offices for driver license or vehicle registration renewals," the DMV said in a release.


The 60-day reprieve begins March 16 and covers some services that require an office visit for new driver licenses, duplicate driver licenses, some driver license renewals, new license plates, complex vehicle registrations or title transfers, and off-highway permits.

Transactions that fall within this period include driver license renewals for those:

  • 70 years of age and older, who are required to take a knowledge test
  • Individuals who are required to renew in the office (last DMV visit was 15 years prior)
  • Individuals subject to vision testing
  • Individuals with complex driving history

The 60-day period also applies to vehicle registration renewals for customers who are not eligible to use an alternative service channel because of:

  • Outdated insurance information
  • Registration expired for 90 days or more
  • Smog issues
  • A recent transfer

Several DMV tasks can still be completed online through the department's website or at its kiosks around the state.

The DMV is also recommending that state law enforcement be flexible when reviewing driver license or identification and vehicle registration. The DMV said it may choose to waive registration penalties, as well.

California's DMV offices are open amid several closures around the state due to the coronavirus, but are working to increase access to services outside the office.