San Diego DUI Law Center

Replacing your Driver License or REAL ID is the first thing you should consider doing as soon as possible.

Go online now at DMV here to get a Replacement (Duplicate) License.

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There’s nothing in the DMV system early on. You will really appreciate it later when you are able to replace your License or REAL ID.

Since you will need a hard-copy driver license with your photograph, you can easily apply for your Replacement/Duplicate License online or REAL ID at a California DMV field office.

WHY get a Replacement (Duplicate) License or REAL ID?

In the upcoming months, you will need your replacement License or REAL ID for:

1. Proof of Identification

2. Credit Card Purchase

3. Bank Transaction

4. Travel

5. To fly in the U.S. beginning October 2021

6. Rent a Vehicle, or

7. Use of your hard-copy photo license for many other reasons.

8.  For a list of all the things you need a photo license for, click here .

Receive that replacement License or REAL ID in the mail within apx. 8 business days (DMV may say a number of weeks but it is usually sooner.)

Field offices are temporarily closed so do this online . All appointments at this time have been canceled and no appointments are currently available.

Click on this Duplicate License Info to create an online DMV account today:

Driver License (DL) and Identification (ID) Card Information

Duplicate Driver License.

DMV’s customers will be charged a 2.1% service fee on all debit and credit card transactions made on the DMV website, DMV Now Kiosks, and automated telephone system.

In order to process your duplicate driver license online, you must:

Use the latest version of DMV’s recommended web browsers: Chrome, Internet Explorer, Firefox, Opera, or Safari.
Create an online account.

Not have a change of address within the last 14 days.

By selecting the “Start” button below, you will be directed to the Online Duplicate Driver License page. To learn more about how your information is shared as well as the laws that protect the release of your information visit How Information is Protected or Disclosed.

All credit/debit card transactions will be assessed a 2.1% service fee.

Start here.

How to Request a Duplicate DL/ID or REAL ID:

  1. Complete a new DL/ID application. Use our online DL/ID application to apply for a duplicate driver license, ID card, or commercial driver license. If you would like to take this opportunity to convert to a REAL ID DL/ID card or CDL, you will be able to select REAL ID in the application. Minors applying for a duplicate DL must have parents’ or guardians’ signatures on the application.
  2. Gather the required proof documents to show DMV. If you do take this opportunity to convert to a REAL ID for the first time, you will need to provide 1.) proof of identity, 2.) proof of social security number (SSN), and 3.) two proofs of California residency. See acceptable documents list. If your duplicate will not be a REAL ID, you do not need to provide any proof documents.
  3. Visit a DMV office to complete the process. Your duplicate request isn’t complete until you come into a field office! You may either make an appointment, or check the current walk-in wait list time for your local office – wait times are often shorter than you would think at certain locations! Be prepared to pay the appropriate duplicate licensing fee, have your photograph validated buy DMV, and scan your thumbprint (to protect against identity theft). If applying for a REAL ID for the first time, bring your proof documents with you. What to expect:
    If you applied for a duplicate driver license or commercial driver license, you will be given a temporary license valid for 60 days. If you applied for an ID card, you will be given a receipt as proof of application.
    You should receive your new DL or ID card in the mail within three to four weeks. If you have not received your DL and/or ID card after 60 days, call 1-800-777-0133 to check the status.

“What should I do if I lose – or I am missing – my driver’s license?”


WHAT DO YOU WANT TO DO? Replace a (e.g. lost or missing) license.

DMV does not ask how your Driver License was lost or who you lost it to.

You will be asked: “Have you ever had your driving privilege cancelled, refused, suspended, or revoked?”
If you have not otherwise suffered a separate suspension, this should not count because DMV has not suspended your license (and may not at all).

Your attorney is going to timely ask DMV to stop (stay) any possible suspension action arising out of this.

Right now you do not know if there will actually be proper paperwork for a suspension at some point in the future.
Had DMV actually suspended your license, DMV would not give you a Duplicate License.
DMV may or may not give you a Duplicate License if they see DMV records are updated to reflect an administrative per se action which may or may not result in a suspension after a scheduled hearing date.

If DMV sees this at some point in the system, they may or may not issue the REAL ID or Duplicate License. It may depend on the field office and/or the state employee who handles your application.

Pay Duplicate License application fee (presently $41 – heading to apx $50 – via DEBIT or CREDIT CARD + DMV service charge).
For current fee, visit Driver License/Identification Card Application Fees.

You will be issued a receipt until you receive your new photo replacement license in the mail.

WHY would DMV give me a Duplicate License?

Your pink DMV Temporary slip is just a piece of paper which may or may not lead to an administrative suspension.

You have not been notified in writing by the Department of Motor Vehicles of any actual suspension action. So if you were to go to CA DMV online to get a copy of your driving record it should show that your license is valid (there is no license suspension action).

REAL ID Option instead?

Please continue to check the DMV website for these REAL ID instructions and for updates here.

DMV was really pushing the REAL ID so it may be worthwhile to get one if an appointment is available.

Most people have the CA DL number memorized or written down on a piece of paper.

If you give them a pink Temporary, they may not understand your need for the hard copy duplicate or replacement.  If you hand DMV the pink paper or they see it in the system, DMV may only give you a Photo I.D. card.  An I.D. card looks like a license so it will not be a wasted trip. 

Once a DMV hearing is scheduled, upon request, a California license holder will usually receive a DMV Temporary License, which states:  

“You may receive a driver license by mail while the action is stayed pending the outcome of your hearing.   Upon notification of the hearing decision, you may be required to surrender your driver license.”

DMV apparently understands that even if (a) a pink temporary was given or (b) a hearing is already scheduled, you are able to get a Duplicate License.  

DMV knows the language on their own Temporary form stating “you may receive a driver license by mail.”

Because the pink Temporary is embarrassing (with “alcohol” all over it), it’s usually not something you want to show other people.  

Instead, in a couple weeks (usually 8 business days or so), DMV should mail you your duplicate photo license.  

Otherwise you may have to wait 7 to 13 months or possibly up to 24 months or more before you would again see a hard copy license again.

WHY is it so easy to get a Duplicate or REAL ID?

You are still able to get a Duplicate License or REAL ID because you are exercising your legal rights, because you have the right to travel, because you are contesting any attempted action by DMV, and because DMV apparently understands that even if: (a) a pink temporary was given or (b) even if a hearing is already scheduled.

DMV may or may not later suspend – HOW does that work?

Common sense:  DMV may not issue you a Duplicate License if DMV had already actually suspended in this case.  

DMV is supposed to later do a review of documents and may not even suspend in this case.  Officers make mistakes, tests are faulty and many objections & grounds may exist for a set aside any possible action. 

There presently is no known sufficient and competent evidence that DMV will definitely suspend. 

If DMV sets aside the possible suspension action, DMV will send you an “Order of Set Aside or Reinstatement” telling you that you can get a Duplicate License (which you will already have).

The officer may attempt to put an action in process by submitting documents to DMV.  DMV may later put an action in their system; or DMV may not.  No one knows for sure right now.  There is no guarantee either way.

Regardless of what is in the system, DMV normally sends you your Duplicate or REAL ID in a couple of weeks.

As long as you plan on hiring an attorney to legally contest the attempt by the officer and DMV to suspend your license, no suspension can even take place unless you do not prevail at the hearing.  

As long as your attorney contacts DMV within the 10 days and your attorney obtains a Set Aside of the action, your license will not be suspended.  

Your goal is to win the DMV hearing.  If your attorney wins the DMV hearing, DMV will issue an Order of Set Aside.  On that Order, DMV has a few boxes to check.  It may check the box:  You may Retain any valid license which you have in your possession.  Or it may state:  Apply for a no-fee duplicate license at the nearest DMV field office.  So if DMV sets aside any action, you would have to go get a duplicate license anyway. 

For many reasons, please do not try to contact DMV yourself to schedule an administrative hearing.  If you call DMV before you apply for your Duplicate license, DMV sometimes may not give you a Duplicate license later.  If you call DMV before you get a Duplicate license, DMV will often thereafter instead give you a photo i.d. card.

Once you get the duplicate in the mail, it is a good idea to make a photocopy of it, for the same reason you would want to copy your credit cards and other personal identification.  If DMV suspends, DMV may send a letter requesting you to surrender any driver license in your possession.

HOW does this relate to the 10 day DMV deadline?

Upon being retained, your attorney will serve the DMV Hearing Request on DMV’s Department of Licensing, Office of Driver Safety just before the 10th calendar day.

Your lawyer serves DMV the Request for Hearing, Request for Discovery, Notice of Representation and Request for Stay.  My Request for Discovery includes all evidence, and sends you a copy of the Request shortly upon being retained.

DMV then takes a number of days to process this and set up a file.  DMV then must gather all the documents.  DMV is very slow.  DMV is typically working now on cases set up a while ago.  Once they set up their file, they contact the attorney to schedule a hearing, usually a month or two later from the time they call to do so.

As soon as your attorney receives any evidence – and it will likely take weeks thereafter – your lawyer will immediately send you copies.  This is not a race and your attorney wants ample time to prepare.  Since you will be allowed to drive without restriction in the interim, there is no prejudice to you.

If DMV ultimately suspends after the hearing, you would then not be able to legally drive.  If DMV suspends, your attorney should immediately email information how to terminate suspension or get a reinstated / restricted privilege to drive.

Some people see the $125 DMV fee on the pink DMV paper and try to go online to pay it after the arrest.  Here’s how DMV responds, instructing the person how to get an online Duplicate License:

From: <>
Subject: Application Not Qualified: Case #1xxxxxxx ********************************:ref


Case #1xxxxxxx

Virtual Field Office

Reissue Fee Application Not Qualified



Thank you for submitting an application to process your reissue fee payment.  After further review, it has been determined that your application does not qualify for payment through the Virtual Field Office due to the following reason:

  • No reissue fees due – Your record indicates that there are no fees due at this time.

NOTE: This application should only be used if you have been instructed to do so by a DMV representative.

If you need a duplicate driver’s license or identification card, please click the link below: 

Replace your Driver’s License or ID Card – California DMV

If you need to renew your driver’s license or identification card, please click the link below:

Driver’s License or ID Card Renewal – California DMV  


California Department of Motor Vehicles



Of course, if you any questions about this, please feel free to email or call your attorney.

You have a great opportunity to take advantage of this extraordinary help.