Colorado Driver License and Registration Information

New to Colorado? Here’s How to Get a License & Register Your Car

So you spend a lot of time in Colorado, or maybe you just moved here, and you want to make it official. How do you become a Colorado resident, and how do you register your car in Colorado and obtain a valid Colorado driver’s license?

Basic Requirements of Residency

You must either own or operate a business in Colorado, be employed in Colorado, or have lived in Colorado for 90 consecutive days to be considered a resident. Once you become a resident, you only have 30 days to register your car with the Colorado Department of Motor Vehicles and to switch your driver’s license to a Colorado one.

How to Get a Colorado License Online

If you’re 21 or older and have a valid license from another state, but you’ve never held a Colorado license or ID, you can apply online.

You will need to upload proof that you’ve had an eye exam from an ophthalmologist in the past three years. If you don’t have this proof, if your name has changed from that on your current license, or if you’re not a US citizen or legal US resident, you will need to obtain a Colorado license at the closest branch of the Colorado DMV.

If you have any outstanding traffic tickets, or if you have renewed online more than twice in a row, you will also need to go to the DMV in person.

If you hold a commercial license, you’ll need a current Department of Transportation medical card to get a Colorado license online. If you need a HazMat endorsement, you will need to go to the DMV.

How to Get a Colorado License at the DMV

If you are applying for a Colorado license at your nearest DMV branch, you will need to gather:

  • Your valid out-of-state license and, if that license does not spell out your middle name, a birth certificate or passport
  • Your parent or guardian, if you are under 18; They will need to sign an Affidavit of Liability in front of a DMV employee
  • Your social security card or, if you don’t have that, a pay stub or tax form that has your social security number on it
  • Two items that offer proof of your Colorado-address; These can be bills, bank statements, mortgage or rental documents, or a transcript from a local university

Check out the complete checklist of documents you’ll need.

How to Get a License if You Move to Colorado from Another Country

You need to make an appointment with the DMV to take the written and driving tests, unless you are from a country where testing requirements are waived: Canada, Germany, France, South Korea, and Taiwan. You will also need to bring the required identification documents to your appointment.

How to Register Your Car in Colorado

If your car is titled in another state, you will need to move your registration to Colorado within a month of establishing residency. First, you will need to convert your title to a Colorado title. To do that, you need a Verification of Vehicle Identification Number form completed by either a police officer, a licensed Colorado car dealership, or a licensed Colorado emissions testing station.

When you arrive at your county’s motor vehicle office, you will need proof of emissions testing (if your county requires it), you’ll need your converted-to-Colorado title, you’ll need proof of car insurance, and you’ll need a credit card or cash to pay the title and registration fee. If there are no liens against your car, you’ll receive your title in the mail in 4-6 weeks. If there are liens, the title will be mailed to the lienholder.

Register to Vote in Colorado

You can move your voter registration at the DMV office or online on the Secretary of State’s website.

Insure Your Car in Colorado

Liability car insurance and uninsured motorist insurance are legally required in Colorado, and you won’t be able to register your car without them.

Depending on the type of vehicle you drive or whether or not your vehicle has liens on it, you may need or want more comprehensive auto insurance.

Click here to find a Colorado Farm Bureau Insurance agent near you, and we’ll make sure you have everything you need to start your driving legally in Colorado.