Are you a diehard McDonald’s fan? Or is Chicago your dream city to live in? Whatever may be your reason, if you’re moving to Illinois then the Prairie State is waiting to welcome you with open arms. Situated in the midwestern region of the United States, Illinois is a booming state inviting people from all over for educational and employment opportunities.

Apart from having the fifth largest Gross Domestic Product in the United States, Illinois is known to have a diverse economic base and is also a transportation hub. The Prairie State is said to be the place where the first ever outlet of McDonald’s was started. Not only that, it is also said to be Superman’s home in Metropolis. While you may be pretty excited to move to Illinois, it is a known fact that with moving comes a whole lot of formalities that need to be done and taken care of.

Amongst them is getting your driver license updated and vehicle registration done. While the process isn’t a very tedious one, you do need to set aside some time and be ready with all the necessary documents. There’s nothing to worry as we have prepared a detailed guide to get you going on the process. And to give you a kickstart, the Prairie State lets you have your own personalized license plate. You could start thinking about yours right away!

Obtaining A Driver’s License When Moving to Illinois From Another State

First things first. You need to get a new driving license when you are moving to Illinois from another state for over a period of 90 days. Until then, you may continue to drive on your valid out-of-state driver’s license. To get a new driver’s license as a resident of Illinois, you will personally have to go to an Illinois Department of Driver Services office to apply for your license. As of now, there aren’t any online or over the phone alternatives available for the process.

Appointments at most Illinois DMV service offices work on a walk-in basis, so make sure to allot sufficient time to get the process done. Here is a step by step guide to help you keep a track of the documentation needed and the time period allotted for updating your address or vehicle registration.

1. Register Your Vehicle In Illinois

You have a time frame of 30 days from the day you move into the Prairie State to register your vehicle and get an Illinois license plate. The local Secretary of State (SOS) office in the county where you live is where you can go and register your vehicle. Make sure you have the following documents in place before you go to register your vehicle.

  • Your current out of state title or proof of Illinois residency.
  • Proof of name and address (Check the website for the list of accepted documents).
  • A completed Application for Vehicle Transaction(s) VSD 190 form.
    (Tip – You can fill out and print your application in advance through the Illinois Electronic Registration and Title (ERT) system, to save yourself some time).
  • Proof of auto insurance.
  • A vehicle safety inspection and proof that you own the vehicle. (Previous registration or title from another state shall work).
  • Odometer reading. (It is better if you take your vehicle along, otherwise a picture of your vehicle’s actual mileage should work as well).

Note: If you have purchased your car from a previous owner, then you will also have to show form RUT-50 Private Party Vehicle Tax Transaction. Or if you have purchased from a car dealer, then form RUT-25 Vehicle Use Tax Transaction Return, will be needed.

As far as the registration fee is concerned, Illinois has increased the fee to register motor vehicles in the state to $151, as of 2020. You can also check the official website for any additional fees that may be applied.

2. Apply For A Change Of Address

Now that your vehicle is registered, the next step is to apply for a change of address for your driver’s license. The good news is that you have a period of 90 days to update your address if you’re moving to Illinois from another state. But don’t wait till the last minute and get it done as early as possible. You will have to visit the Department of Driver Services office in person to apply and the documents that you will need are:

  • Your out of state driver’s license.
  • Proof of date of birth and identity. (U.S. Birth Certificate, Certificate of Citizenship, Certificate of Naturalization, U.S. Passport).
  • Social security number proof. (Social Security Administration Card, W-2 Form, SSA – 1099 Form, Non-SSA – 1099 Form, U.S. Military ID Card).
  • Residence proof. (Current Bank Statement, Utility Bill, Property Deed/Title, Rent/Lease Agreement, Mortgage Bill, or Pay Stub from new Illinois address).
  • Proof of written signature. (Your US passport, Signed Credit or Debit card, U.S. military ID card).

While a driver’s test may not be necessary for a change of address (provided you still hold a current valid, out of state license), you will still have to pass a vision test and a written test. And you will be charged a fee of $30 for getting a new Illinois driver’s license. However, this could vary depending on any additional or alternative costs that may apply.

Can you update your Illinois DMV change of address online?

No, if you’re moving from another state to Illinois. You can’t do an Illinois DMV change of address online or over a call when you move into the Prairie State from another state. However, if you’re moving within Illinois, then you can update your change in address online through the official state website.

Can you drive with a foreign driver’s license in Illinois?

Yes, for a maximum period of 90 days. While Illinois does not recognise the International Driver’s License, you can still use your foreign driver’s license for up to 90 days, as long as it is valid and has not expired. After this period, if you need a driver’s license in Illinois, you will have to visit the Secretary of State office with the required documents.

See also: Illinois Relocation Guide | Average Cost to Move from One State to Another

Obtaining A Driver’s License When Moving Within Illinois

Like the registration period, you have just 30 days to update your address with the Department of Driver Services after you move within the Prairie State. Although getting your address updated after you move may seem like a tedious process, getting it updated on your driver’s license isn’t so difficult.

You can either do it online, in the comfort of your home or go to a nearby Department of Driver Services facility in-person and get things done. Here’s everything to get you started!

1. Online

If you are already running on a tight schedule and can’t spare the time to visit the Driver Services office in-person, don’t worry, as you can just update your address online through the IL DVS website.

To get the address on your driver’s license updated:

You need to fill the Change of Address form available on the state website. Now, irrespective of whether you are moving to Illinois from another state or are moving within the Prairie State itself, the fee of $30 remains the same to get your address updated on your driving license. For people falling outside the age bracket of 21 – 68 years, the fee would be lower.

Keep the following details by your side when you’re doing the process online:

  • Date of birth
  • Your current driver’s license number
  • Your Social Security number

To update your registration:

You have to follow the same steps when you want to change the address on your registration, so visit the state DMV website for the process. Apart from the documents mentioned above, you will also have to keep the following ones handy:

  • Your License plate number.
  • Expiration date of your Title and Registration.
  • Your VIN which is the Vehicle Identification Pin (specifically, the last four digits).

You will be charged a nominal fee between $3-$5, for updating the new address on your vehicle’s title.

2. In-Person

In most cases, Illinois does not offer a new driver’s license if you’re moving within the state. But if you wish to get a corrected license with your updated address, then you can visit your nearest Department of Driver Services office in-person and get the process done.

See also: Best-Rated Local Moving Companies

When You’re Moving Out Of Illinois

With many other perks that the Prairie State offers, one more added to the list is that there is no obligation for you to notify the Illinois Department of Driver Services when you’re moving out of the state. But what if your vehicle is registered to Illinois? No obligation to inform then too! As soon as you update your vehicle to your new state of residence, and your vehicle Title gets updated as per the procedures of the new state, the Illinois Secretary of State office will automatically scrap your Illinois driver licence. Oh, and the coolest part is that you don’t even have to worry about returning your Illinois License Plate, you can use it for some cool wall art!

Must read: Top Out of State Movers in the U.S.


Is It Illegal To Not Change Your Address When You Move?

Though it may not be in all states, it will still surely cause a lot of inconvenience. In the states where it is, you may even end up being penalized with fines or jail time if you do not change your address when you move. Apart from causing you trouble for numerous paperwork, not changing your address could also cause a lot of confusion in government records or for insurance companies.

As far as a driver’s license is concerned, if you don’t change your address when you move, you may not be able to use it as an important source of document for things like voter registration or even for paying your taxes. It’s always better to have all your documents updated for anything may come handy even when you’re least expecting it, right?


Even though the state of Illinois gives you a good time frame to register your vehicle and update your address, keeping it for the last minute may not be a wise choice. The process isn’t a very tedious one and the state’s official website also has all the important details to guide you through it all. Getting your things in order will only save you from the unnecessary stress that may just crop up at the least expected moments. So, wait no further and get started at the right time!