New Hamphire drivers license renewal

New Hampshire Driver’s License Renewal: A Complete Guide

Zutobi
by Zutobi · Updated Jul 02, 2021

License renewals can be a time-consuming hassle. Here at Zutobi, we aim to make your process as painless as it can be.

In this guide, we will go through everything you need to know about renewing your driver’s license in New Hampshire.

When Do I Need to Renew My Driver’s License?

In New Hampshire, a driver’s license is valid for up to 5 years, and it expires on your birthday. You will automatically receive a reminder notice in the mail about 2 months before it expires.

You can renew in person up to 6 months before your expiration date. If you want to renew online, you will need to wait for your 2-month notice.

What if It Has Expired?

If your license has expired, the process varies based on how long it has been invalid for driving:

  • If your license is expired for less than a year, the process remains normal and you must renew at a DMV office.
  • If your license is expired for 1-3 years, you will need to bring proof of identification and residency.
  • If your license is expired for over three years, you will need to bring the documents above AND pass the written and driving tests again.

What is the Grace Period for an Expired Driver’s License in New Hampshire?

There is NO grace period for expired licenses. In fact, driving without a valid license comes with some HEAVY penalties.

If you drive with an expired license, the first offense comes with a fine of up to $1000. A second offence is a Class B misdemeanor with up to $1200 in fines and 4 demerit points on your driving record. If you are also convicted of a driving violation while driving without a valid license, your driving privileges can be revoked for up to 12 months! 

How to Renew a New Hampshire Driver’s License

You have the option to renew your New Hampshire driver’s license either online or in-person, however, the requirements and steps to complete the process will vary depending on which option you choose.

Online Renewal

You can’t renew online until you’ve received your renewal notice in the mail. You need the RIN on the slip to do so.

You will NOT receive an online renewal option if:

If you are turning 21, you can renew on your birthday to automatically get the “Over 21” horizontal card. Otherwise, you will need to go in-person after you turn 21 to update your card.

How to Complete the Process

If you satisfy the requirements and you received an invitation to renew online, follow these steps:

  1. Make sure you have:
    1. Your RID code (a ten-digit number on your renewal notice)
    2. Your current driver’s license
    3. A MasterCard or Visa Credit Card (for paying the fee)
    4. A printer handy to print your temporary license
  2. Visit the DMV’s online renewal service
  3. Follow the prompts. They will lead you to verify your identity and make sure your current information is correct.
  4. Pay the required fees
  5. The DMV will use your old photo on file.
  6. Print your paper receipt. This will act as a temporary license good for 60 days. Your physical license will arrive in the mail to your residential address within those 60 days.

Careful! If you get ‘locked out’ from too many failed verification attempts, you will have to renew in person.

Renewal in Person

You will need to renew your license in person if:

  • You are not a US citizen
  • You renewed your license online last time
  • You did not receive an RIN number in the mail
  • You are locked out of the online program from too many failed verification attempts

To get started, find your local DMV office using the provided tool, and make sure you come prepared. You will then need to follow these steps: 

  1. Bring your current license or one identifying document. If your name has changed, you’ll need to bring proof of your name change.
    1. (REAL-ID ONLY) Bring 1 document proving your SSN, and 2 documents proving residency or lawful presence. Here’s a list of the accepted documents.
  2. Complete the Application for Driver License or Non-Driver ID Card (Form DSMV450)
  3. Pass a vision test
  4. If your license has expired for over three years, take the written and driving test again. You may also be required to take the tests at your examiner’s discretion. Typically, this would be if you have penalties and driving violations on your license. 
  5. Have a new picture taken
  6. Pay the fee. When paying in person, you can use your Visa, Mastercard, or American Express. You can also pay with cash or a check/money order made out to ‘State of NH – DMV’.
  7. Collect your temporary paper license. It will be valid for 60 days, and your license will arrive in the mail at your residential address within those 60 days.

New Hampshire Driver’s License Renewal Fees

The cost for renewing a driver’s license in New Hampshire varies based on what kind of license you need:

  • $50 for a standard license
  • $60 for a REAL-ID.
  • If you are under 21: $10 per year up to age 21.
  • Non-US Citizen: $10 per year, not to exceed five years.

You can pay by Visa or Mastercard if you qualify for online renewal. The DMV accepts American Express in person. You can also pay cash or check/money order in person! Make the check or money order out to “State of DH-DMV”.

Note that the renewal fees may be subject to change, so make sure to check the latest fees on the New Hampshire DMV website. 

Do I Need a REAL-ID?

Starting May 3, 2023, a standard driver’s license will not qualify as your federal ID. The date used to be Oct 1, 2021, however, DHS announced another extension on April 27, 2021.

This means it does not count as a valid id to board a plane, visit a military base, or enter some government and nuclear facilities. If you need access to any of these things, it helps to have a REAL-ID or current passport.

That’s It

That’s everything you need to know about renewing your driver’s license in New Hampshire, make sure to do so well before your license expires to avoid unnecessary complications. If you need help studying for renewal exams, then Zutobi is the perfect study resource with state-of-the-art refresher exams.

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