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Michigan Driver’s License Renewal: All You Should Know About It! 

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Getting a driver’s license in Michigan requires you to undergo various stages. But, you will surely feel stress-free once you’ve run the whole gamut! That’s not the end of it, though. You’ll need to undergo the entire process again when it’s time for your Michigan driver’s license renewal. Is it that difficult to renew your driver’s license in Michigan?  

Michigan has a few simple and user-friendly options for renewing your license without any fuss. However, it needn’t be as time-consuming as you may imagine! If your Michigan driver’s license is about to expire, you should renew it as soon as possible. Driving without a valid license will earn you penalties and even jail time.  

So, how can you do a Michigan driver’s license renewal? Renewing a Michigan driver’s license is very simple. Still, there are a few things you must be aware of ahead, including how to renew, what all you need, and how much it costs. 

When should you renew your driver’s license in Michigan? 

In Michigan, a driver’s license is typically good for four years. However, if you are below 21, your license will expire when you turn 21. 

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How early can you renew your driver’s license in Michigan? 

You can do a Michigan driver’s license renewal up to one year before the expiration date. You’ll get a mail from The Secretary of State to your most recent address they have on file for you around 45 days before your driver’s license expires. So if you don’t want to get caught driving in Michigan with an expired license, ensure you keep your address up to date and know when your license will expire. 

How to renew a driver’s license in Michigan 

You can do a Michigan driver’s license renewal in four ways. 

  • In-person 
  • By mail 
  • Online  
  • At a self-service station  

How to renew a driver’s license in-person 

Driver's license in Michigan
Image courtesy: https://www.michigan.gov/

You’ll probably need to use this option sooner or later because Michigan law mandates you to renew the license in person every 12 years. These renewals happen at a branch office of the Secretary of State. You can do the renewal in person if these conditions apply. 

  • You are renewing your license or upgrading to a REAL ID. 
  • The last renewal was by mail or online. 
  • You’ve requested a duplicate license within the previous four weeks. Also, you requested a change of address during the last ten days 
  • Your Social Security Number (SSN) is not on record. 
  • There happened health changes that affect your driving ability.  
  • You haven’t renewed your driver’s license in over four years.  

You must update any other details in person, in addition to your address. So don’t forget to bring the required documents while doing an in-person Michigan driver’s license renewal.  

What to do  

  • Visit a local branch of the Secretary of State (SOS). In some cases, setting up an appointment in advance may be necessary. 
  • Ensure to bring a valid ID like your license. Bring these documents if you are renewing or upgrading to a REAL ID. 
  • Go with your corrective lenses if you need them to drive. 
  • Update your address and any other necessary information. 
  • Be ready to retake the written and driving exams if your license got suspended for longer than four years. 
  • Take a vision test. 
  • Take a new photo for the license. 
  • Pay the renewal fees with cash, cheques, money orders, or credit/debit cards. 
  • You will obtain a temporary paper license if the establishment does not print on-site. Within three weeks, it will reach your address.  

How to renew a driver’s license by mail 

You can do a Michigan driver’s license renewal by mail if you meet the following conditions. 

  • Your license is a standard, enhanced, or a chauffeur’s one.  
  • The last renewals weren’t by mail, online, or at a self-service station.  
  • You don’t have a  suspended, denied, or revoked license.  
  • The license hasn’t remained expired for more than four years. 
  • Social Security Administration has verified your SSN. 
  • There is no record of you on the sex offenders registry. 

What to do if you’re eligible 

  • If you got a renewal notice in the mail, fill it out and sign it. You should receive the notice around 45 days before your license expires.  
  • Update if your address changed.  
  • Pay the renewal fee by money order or cheque. 
  • Mail your renewal application at least three weeks beforehand. Do not drive if your new license has not arrived by the expiration date. Driving without a valid license is illegal in the state.  

How to renew your Michigan driver’s license online 

You can do a Michigan driver’s license renewal online if you meet the following conditions 

  • You haven’t changed your personal information since your last in-person renewal in the last eight years, and only your address has changed. 

The online renewal charge is $18, plus $9 for any update on the information and $7 for late renewals. You are entitled to renew online if you are a US citizen and previously renewed your driver’s license in person at a nearby Michigan Secretary of State office. 

What to do 

  • Visit the ExpressSOS page.  
  • You have to provide identity proof. Expect to provide your driver’s license number, last four digits of SSN, birth date, and eye color.  
  • Finish the steps. 
  • Use credit or debit cards to pay the renewal fee. 

You should receive your license in three weeks. Do not drive if it does not come before your license expires! Driving without a valid license is illegal.  

How to renew a driver’s license at a self-service station 

You can renew at a self-service station if you’ve renewed your license in person within the last eight years and don’t need to modify any information. You’ll require the following. 

  • The driver’s license number. 
  • A renewal fee of $17. There will be a $3.95 service fee and a 2.3 percent processing fee if you pay via a credit or debit card. 

Doing a Michigan driver’s license renewal at a self-service station is a good alternative as they will print you a temporary license. Then, you can use it until your permanent one comes in the mail. 

How long will it take for a Michigan driver’s license renewal? 

Ideally, it takes about three weeks for the renewal process. So, always plan if you’re renewing your Michigan driver’s license online or by mail. You will get a temporary license printed if you’re renewing in person or at a self-service station. Ensure not to drive if your license has expired and you haven’t received the renewed one.  

How much to renew a driver’s license in Michigan? 

Michigan driver’s license renewal costs you $18. In addition, be ready to pay a late renewal cost of $7 if you renew your license after it expires.  

Is there a grace period for renewing a Michigan driver’s license? 

In Michigan, there is no grace period! Driving with an expired license has the same effect as driving while possessing an invalid license. You may be subject to 93 days in jail for your first offense and fines of up to $500. Then, each time you get caught, it gets worse. 

How do I renew an enhanced driver’s license in Michigan?  

Like standard licenses and IDs, you can renew an enhanced driver’s license online, by mail, or at a self-service station if they don’t require a new photo. For instance, most citizens only need to take a new photo when renewing their license or ID at a Secretary of State’s office every 12 years. It will cost you around $38 to renew an enhanced driver’s license in Michigan. 

Can I renew a suspended Michigan driver’s license? 

No, if you have three or more unpaid parking fines on your record, your license gets suspended, revoked, or both. Before you renew your license, you must notify the Social Security administration if your name has changed. To ensure everything gets updated timely, begin this step at least three weeks before your renewal. 

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