Driver licensing offices, largely closed since March 31 due to the COVID-19 pandemic, will reopen by appointment only in a series of stages beginning Monday, June 22. Health and safety measures will be taken by the Department of Licensing (DOL) to help protect both employees and customers at all locations.
The following offices will be the first to reopen for services that can be obtained only in person:
- Federal Way
- Moses Lake
- Vancouver North
Union Gap initially was also on the list, but the reopening of that office is on hold due to the impact of COVID-19 in Yakima County.
Customers are urged to go online or call the Customer Service Center (360-902-3900), if possible, to get what they need. Online services are regularly being expanded.
Appointments are for customers who cannot complete their transaction online, by phone, or by mail. With social distancing in place, offices will be operating at significantly reduced capacity and appointments will be limited.
Services offered by appointment only include:
- First-time driver license, including knowledge and skills testing (where offered)
- First-time identification card
- Enhanced driver license (EDL) and enhanced ID (EID)
- Name change on license/ID
- Instruction permit
- Commercial driver license (CDL) and commercial learner permit (CLP)
- Agricultural permit, including knowledge and skills testing (where offered)
- Reinstatement, including knowledge and skills testing (where offered)
- Occupational restricted license
- Driver training school instructor test
Please keep in mind that the REAL ID enforcement date has been pushed back a year to Oct. 1, 2021. There will be plenty of time to obtain a compliant document, such as an EDL or EID, before then.
Most residents, including those under age 24 and over 70, are temporarily eligible to renew their licenses, identification cards, vehicle registrations, and instruction permits online.
Driver licenses and instruction permits expiring March 1 through June 30, 2020 were automatically extended for 180 days. Those expiring July 1 through Sept. 30, 2020 were extended for 90 days.
When More Offices Will Reopen
We are working to reopen all of our 55 driver licensing offices as quickly and safely as possible. The order is being determined by factors including geographic location, community access, volume history, capacity for safe delivery of service, weekdays open, and staffing considerations.
This schedule may result in offices being open in counties not yet approved for the governor’s Phase 3 reopening. This decision, supported by the Governor’s Office, was based on the health and safety framework put in place as part of DOL’s reopening plan and currently in use in seven offices. DOL is confident services can be delivered safely.
Health and Safety Precautions
To reduce the risk of coronavirus spread, DOL is implementing several health and safety practices at driver licensing offices, including:
- DOL employees will be screened for symptoms and wear personal protective equipment (PPE).
- Customers will be asked about symptoms. They will also be encouraged to wear a cloth facial covering and wash their hands or use sanitizer prior to entering.
- Physical distancing of at least 6 feet will be maintained between employees, customers, and vendors.
- Hard plastic barriers have been installed at service counters, with 6 feet of distance between lobby chairs and 6-foot markers outside the main entrance.
- Regular sanitizing of high-touch surfaces/areas will take place.
- Customers and vendors showing signs of illness will be required to leave.
- Customers will be made aware of requirements prior to scheduling an appointment.
- Additional protective requirements may be needed for skills tests and will be communicated when scheduled.
How to Make an Appointment
With the announcement of furloughs for all state workers, our days of operation will be temporarily reduced starting the week of June 29. All reopening offices will be open Monday through Thursday in July, with the exception of Thursday, July 2 (we’ll also be closed July 3 in observance of Independence Day). We’ll be open Friday, July 31.
Customers with transactions that do not require an in-person visit will be asked to use alternative service channels, such as numerous online services, phone, or mail.
If an in-person visit is the only option, you can make an appointment online or call 360-902-3900 for assistance setting one up.
The scheduling system automatically offers the first available dates. If appointment slots are filled, try again the next day. Our representatives cannot change an appointment after it is made, so if you need a different date/time, you must cancel your appointment and start over.
When an appointment is made, an email confirmation will be sent with instructions on how to check in to a “virtual lobby” upon arrival. Customers will wait in their vehicle until being invited into the building. There will be signage.
Those who show up to an office without an appointment will be scheduled for a return visit or redirected as needed.
Vehicle Licensing Offices
Vehicle licensing offices (VLOs) are open. VLOs handle vehicle tabs, boat decals, license plates, reports of vehicle sale or transfer of ownership, vehicle/boat registrations, trip permits, replacement titles, disabled parking placards/tabs, and more.
VLOs are not impacted by state worker furloughs and are on normal hours of operation.
Please be patient, as call volume is high.
- Driver licensing: 360-902-3900
- Vehicle licensing: 360-902-3770
- Online appointments: https://www.dol.wa.gov/appointments/