DDS Commissioner Launches Economic Development Initiative

7/1/2013

Reciprocal Agreement for Driving Test Exemptions Signed with South Korea

Commissioner Rob Mikell, Department of Driver Services (DDS) and He Beom Kim, Consul General of the Republic of Korea, signed an agreement today to exempt South Korean citizens who have a valid South Korean driver’s license from written and on-the-road testing when applying for a Georgia driver’s license.  Those Georgia residents living in South Korea will be afforded the same privilege from South Korea.

House Bill 475 was sponsored by Representative B.J. Pak (R-Lilburn) and passed by the Georgia General Assembly during the 2013 Legislative Session.  Governor Nathan Deal signed the legislation into law at the Kia Motors Manufacturing Georgia facility in West Point on May 1st.  This Bill allows the DDS Commissioner to enter into agreements with foreign countries that have made a substantial economic investment and that have led to the creation of jobs in this state for recognition of their driver’s licenses in Georgia.  South Korea has become the first foreign country to enter into such an agreement with DDS.

“It is fitting that this Memorandum of Understanding with South Korea be the first to inaugurate this new initiative,” said Mikell.  “The Georgia-South Korea business partnership has a strong foundation to build on.  This additional customer service enhancement should be a welcome benefit to many applicants including students, business partners and their families,” he added.

He Beom Kim, praised Governor Nathan Deal and other officials for their support of the legislation enabling the state to enter into reciprocal agreements with foreign countries to recognize valid driver's licenses.

Requirements for Georgia Testing Exemptions:

  • Customer must be legally present in Georgia.
  • Customer must have a valid license of the equivalent class from South Korea.
  • The customer must be at least 18 years old. 
  • The customer must be a citizen of South Korea. 
  • The customer will only be exempt from testing for issuance of a Class C (standard vehicle) license.  There are no exemptions for Instructional, Class M (motorcycle) or Commercial Licenses.
  • Customers must pass a vision screening.

Please visit the DDS website at www.dds.ga.gov for complete driver education and testing information.  Many online transactions are available including an enhanced online address change feature.