How to Transfer Your Out-of-State Driver’s License to New Jersey: A Complete Guide

Zutobi
by Zutobi · Updated Sep 23, 2021

With its proximity to New York City, New Jersey is quickly becoming a popular place for individuals looking for a solid balance of bustling city life and laid back suburbia. The state also has many popular beaches and tourist areas that are certainly a sight to see. It takes less than two hours to travel the entire state, so everything you’ll need is within a reasonable distance.

When you move to New Jersey, there are several tasks you’ll have to complete in order to complete your residency establishment. Transferring your out-of-state license is one of them. 

When Do You Need to Transfer Your Driver’s License to New Jersey?

The state of New Jersey requires new residents to transfer their driver’s license and vehicle registration within 60 days of arrival. In public health crises, this period is extended to 120 days. You won’t be reminded of this date, so be sure to keep note of the date you traveled into the state.

Change of Address in New Jersey

The New Jersey Motor Vehicle Commission requires an updated physical address for all drivers. However, it does not specify a time period in which you’ll need to have it completed. We recommend changing your license with the DMV as soon as possible. If you need to change your address, doing so is simple. In NJ, most address changes can be done online. Those lacking access to the online portal may visit the DMV in order to get their address changed. Current residents moving to a new address within the state must also change their license online or at the DMV.  

The DMV will ask for documentation at the beginning of the process. When changing your address, you may be asked to present or upload:

  1. Proof of new address
  2. Proof of age and identity
  3. Proof of citizenship or legal presence

How to Transfer an Out-of-State Driver’s License to New Jersey

1 – Schedule Appointment with New Jersey DMV

You are required to schedule an appointment with the DMV in order to transfer your license to New Jersey. The DMV has an appointment scheduler for all residents who need to receive service. Any motor vehicle licensing center in the state will be able to take care of your license transfer. It is recommended that you make your appointment with the office closest to you. 

2 – Purchase Transfer Permit

A transfer permit is required upon application. This permit is $10 and will be assessed at the time of your application.

3 – Pass Vision Screening

You’ll need to exhibit a visual acuity of 20/50 or better in order to pass the vision exam. You can take a test at your primary physician’s office, or on site at the DMV. If you do not pass, you’ll need to retake the test or drive with corrective lenses.

4 – Have Picture Taken

Your picture will be taken at the time of your application to be put on file with the NJDMV. While no dress code is mandated, you’ll want to look presentable on the day of your visit.

5 – Bring Documentation

There are certain pieces of documentation you’ll need to provide to your DMV clerk in order to complete your license transfer application. Be sure to prepare these ahead of time to avoid any complications when you arrive at the office. You’ll find a full list of acceptable documents here:

  1. Out of State license, proving identity and birth date
  2. Proof of New Jersey Address
  3. 6 Points of Identification

6 – Receive Your Temporary License

If everything checks out, and you’ve completed all of the requirements above, you will receive your new license and be required to surrender your old, out-of-state license. 

What If You’re from Another Country?

If you are moving to New Jersey permanently as a non-US citizen, you will not be able to drive within the state before getting a new license. This involves passing both the road test and the written knowledge test, in addition to the tasks listed above. 

Written Exam

The knowledge exam will test you on core driving rules and traffic signs throughout the state of New Jersey. There are 50 questions on the exam – you’ll need to answer at least 40 to pass with a score of 80%. If English is not your primary language, the NJDMV also offers the exam in French, Spanish, Korean, and more. 

Studying for the exam is difficult and the New Jersey driver’s handbook doesn’t always help as much as it should. This is why we recommend Zutobi, our gamified e-learning platform allowing you to digest driving concepts quickly while also answering practice test questions.

Road Test

On the road test, you’ll be asked to perform core driving concepts and be tested on your ability to operate a motor vehicle safely. An appointment is required and the DMV recommends you practice for about 3-6 months beforehand. The test will take approximately 10 to 15 minutes.

What Happens If You Don’t Transfer in Time?

The New Jersey DMV offers new residents 60 days to transfer their license. To avoid additional stress, it’s best to get this action item completed as soon as possible. As we mentioned, no reminder is given, so you’ll want to complete this transfer as early as possible to avoid potential citations and fines.

That’s It!

That’s all there is to transferring your driver’s license to New Jersey. The process can be confusing, but that’s why we’re here! Be sure to reference this guide early and often during the process.

Furthermore, we recommend that you study a refresher course to learn the specific driving laws for your new state. We provide state-of-the-art New Jersey courses that will help you identify and remember everything you need to know.

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