Driver's License or State ID

In the State of Illinois, there are three different forms of license/IDs:

  • A Driver's License is used for driving and identification (banking, traveling, etc.) and is only available to those with a SSN.
  • A Illinois State ID is used for identification (when banking, traveling, etc.) and is only available to those with a SSN.
  • A Temporary Visitor Driver's License is used for driving ONLY and is available to those without a SSN.

 

If you have a Social Security Number, you can apply for a Driver's License: 

  • Visit an Illinois Secretary of State's Office. Make sure it offers driver's license services. Locations and services can be found at the Secretary of State website.
  • Visit the office early in the morning because the wait is usually long.
  • Bring the necessary documents.
  • Obtaining a driver's license costs $30, which must be paid at the time of application.
  • You will be required to take vision and written tests and to have your photograph taken. For information on road rules and regulations in the state of Illinois, Rules of the Road.
  • You will be required to take a driving test if you do not have a driver's license from another state. You must take the test in your own vehicle.
  • If you fail the driving or written test, you may apply for the license again after further study.
  • Receive a temporary, secure paper DL/ID at the facility.
  • After review and verification of documents have been conducted, your Driver's License will be mailed to you within 15 business days.

 

If you have a Social Security Number, and you would like to have an identification card, you can apply for the Illinois State ID.

  • Visit an Illinois Secretary of State's Office. Make sure it offers driver's license services. Locations and services can be found at Chicago and Vicinity Driver Facilities.
  • Bring the Required Documents:
    • Social Security Card
    • Proof of your signature
    • Proof of immigration status (I-20/ DS-2019 and most recent I-94 Record)
    • Proof of residency
    • If you have a U.S. military ID you do not need to provide proof of your social security number.
  • You will be required to pay $20.

 

If you DON'T have a Social Security Number, you can apply for a Temporary Visitor Driver's License. It will cost $30.

 

***To apply for any of these forms of ID, your I-20/DS-2019 must be valid at least 6 months into the future.*

 

For more information:

Driver's License/ State ID Required Documents

Illinois Rules of the Road

Overview of driving in the USA