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Department of Driver Services (DDS) Offers Tips for Better Service

4/16/2013

Don't Forget Two (2) proofs of Residency

Department of Driver Services (DDS) offers this important reminder about new documentation requirements when renewing or obtaining a new Georgia driver’s license or ID card. Customers can expect to present documentation to establish identity, a name change, citizenship or lawful presence in the United States, a Social Security number, and two documents to prove their residential address.

“The DDS is committed to issuing a REAL ID compliant driver’s license or State Identification Card to customers on their first visit to a customer service center (CSC),” said DDS Commissioner Rob Mikell. “We will continue to evaluate customer feedback and data analysis to make adjustments to our operating procedures to meet increasing demands and ultimately improve customer service,” he added. 

DDS is particularly focused on ensuring that each customer brings two proofs of their residential address along with their identity and social security number documentation.  Statistics reveal that the majority of return customer visits are to present a secondary proof of their residential address. 

The important tips below can ensure customers have the two necessary proofs of residential street address to complete their Driver Services transactions in a single visit.

Residency Requirements

  • Be sure you bring all the necessary documents. All customers may create and print a Custom Document Checklist, listing the exact documents they should bring on their next visit to one of our customer service centers, by visiting the DDS’ website, www.dds.ga.gov, and clicking on the blue box titled “Secure Driver’s License and ID”.
  • The most common proof of residency presented are utility bills for services installed at the customers’ residential address (water, sewer, gas, electricity, cable/satellite TV, internet, telephone/cell phone, or garbage collection).
  • Two bank statements or two credit card statements are acceptable for proof of residency as long as they are from separate companies (MasterCard and Visa statements are acceptable. A Visa statement from two separate months is not acceptable.)
  • Customers who exclusively use a post office box for their mail have many options for proving their residential address.  For example, they may present a voter registration card (printable directly from the Secretary of State’s website at http://mvp.sos.state.ga.us) or use a property tax, utility or cable bill or an insurance card when it includes the actual service address. 
  • Students can use a letter from their school plus a parent’s license or ID which has the same address.  College students often retain official residency at home and in most instances will not need to verify the college address.
  • DDS operates a Secure ID Help Desk comprised of specialized staff who is dedicated to helping resolve various issues.

Identification Requirements

The important tips below will assist customers when determining acceptable identification documents.  All identity documents must be the original or a certified copy from the issuing agency and will include a raised seal.

  • For persons who have ever been married, if the last name appearing on the primary identification document (ex. birth certificate, passport, etc.) is different from the current name, then these customers must be prepared to present additional supporting documents.  This requirement applies even if the person has been married for many years
  • Customers who currently hold a valid Georgia driver’s license or ID card may present original or certified copies of a document which supports the most recent name change (ex. marriage certificate, certified marriage application, certified marriage license and/or divorce decree).  Customers who are new to Georgia must provide the complete trail of original or certified copy documents which support all name changes.
  • All customers, regardless if they are new to Georgia or already hold a valid Georgia driver’s license or ID card, who use an up-to-date passport to prove their married name as their legal name do not need to show additional documentation proving identity.  For example, these customers do not need to present a birth certificate or a marriage license.

An additional tip is to plan your visit to the DDS. A license can be renewed 150 days before the expiration date (typically a customer’s birth date).  Tuesday is the busiest day for service at any location.  DDS provides two week historical average wait time data for each customer service center at http://www.dds.ga.gov/cscwaittimes/.