COLUMBIA, S.C. — People getting a driver’s license after next Monday will see the expiration date on their license change.
Driver’s licenses and identification cards issued on or after Monday will no longer expire on the cardholder’s birthday, according to the South Carolina Department of Motor Vehicles.
The expiration date of cards issued on or after Monday will be based on the date the SCDMV issued the card.
For example, if a customer with full driving privileges visits the SCDMV on Monday and purchases a regular REAL ID license, the license will expire on Nov. 25, 2027.
This change does not apply to customers who buy a duplicate or modified license or ID on or after Nov. 25. It only applies to first-time licenses and IDs or cards that are renewed on and after Nov. 25.
Customers should make a note of their expiration date when receiving their card, but the SCDMV will send a reminder by mail when they’re close to their expiration date.
If a customer visits the SCDMV website on Sunday, Nov. 24, to renew his or her driver’s license or purchase a REAL ID license online, the expiration date will be Nov. 24, 2027.
The changes in license renewals are the result of Act 86 from 2019. It includes changes in fee for IDs for people 5- to 16 years old, fee for purchasing a duplicate ID card for people 17 years old and older, fee for non-US citizen driver’s licenses, validity period for commercial learner’s permits (CLP), and validity period for commercial driver’s licenses (CDL).
Beginning Monday, identification cards for people 5 to 16 years old will be $15. This is a $10 increase. The increase covers the SCDMV’s actual cost to produce the card. All IDs will now be valid for eight years, instead of five.
IDs for people 17 years old and older remain free, but beginning Nov. 25, people 17 and older will be issued only one free ID card per issuance cycle every eight years. A replacement ID will be $10 if the SCDMV has already issued the customer a free card.
For example, if a customer loses his or her ID after being issued a free card, the customer must pay $10 to receive a new ID.
Customers will be eligible to renew their ID for free if they’re within one year of its expiration date.
Commercial driver’s licenses (CDL) issued on and after Nov. 25 will be valid for eight years. Previously, CDLs were valid for five. If a customer holds a CDL with a hazmat endorsement, however, the CDL expires five years from the date the customer passed his or her Transportation Security Administration threat assessment.
A CDL that is valid for eight years costs $25. A CDL with a hazmat endorsement costs $15. These prices are in addition to the $15 application fee.
Finally, commercial learner’s permits will now be valid for one year instead of six months.
“This is a comprehensive driver’s license and identification card act that more fully puts the State of South Carolina in compliance with REAL ID, among other things” SCDMV executive director Kevin Shwedo said. “It also will cut down on free identification card abuse that SCDMV employees frequently encounter. An employee recently told me she worked with a customer who needed a new state-issued ID since it was his dog’s favorite chew toy. That customer had been given more than ten IDs for free!”
Shwedo added, “Finally, this law allows the state to expand the validity period of commercial learner’s permits to a year, matching federal recommendations.”
There are also changes to the DMV’s approach to non-U.S. citizens beginning Monday.
The SCDMV issues driver’s licenses and identification cards to non-U.S. citizens who present the proper identity documents, including their authorized length of stay in the United States. No types of licenses or IDs are issued to people illegally in the country.
Prior to Monday, international customers pay $12.50 for their license that is valid for no more than five years. If the international customer’s authorized length of the stay in the U.S. is shorter than five years, the license is valid for the same amount of time as their authorized length of stay in the U.S.
Beginning Nov. 25, international customers will pay $25 for a license that is valid for more than four years. International customers will continue to pay $12.50 for a license that is valid for four years or less.
Also included in the act are the changes to what the SCDMV can accept from customers interested in adding “Veteran” to their license or ID. However, the SCDMV implemented this change on Oct. 21.