October 31, 2017
Example of a website that is NOT affiliated with the Washington State Department of Licensing.
Be careful when considering any licensing or vehicle registration transaction on non-DOL websites.
While many websites offer online services, there is only one official website for the Washington State Department of Licensing: dol.wa.gov.
Unofficial websites typically charge additional fees. They may even charge for services that are free at dol.wa.gov.
Worse yet, unofficial websites might never deliver the service you paid to receive.
For a safe, secure transaction without additional fees, please visit dol.wa.gov.
September 17, 2012
OLYMPIA—The Department of Licensing introduced a fast, easy way to manage your driver license and all of your vehicle, trailer and boat licenses in one secure online service called License Express.
This new service allows people to take care of all of the most common DOL license transactions like renewals and address changes. It also makes it easy to take care of many less common tasks like ordering a duplicate driver license or ID card, signing up for email renewal reminders, ordering copies of your driving record and report the sale of vehicles or boats.
“It’s no secret our customers typically dread a trip to a local driver licensing office to wait for service,” Licensing Director Alan Haight said. “License Express is like having a DOL office at home.”
License Express ties together DOL’s most popular online services that, individually, have been used more than 2.5 million times by customers wanting to skip a trip to an office. DOL plans to keep improving this new service over time and adding more features to make it even more useful and save DOL customers more time.
License Express takes advantage of a highly secure login process through the state’s Secure Access Washington service to safeguard personal information.
DOL customers can learn more about this new service and sign up at the DOL website at dol.wa.gov.
April 26, 2012
Vehicle and boat owners who find themselves in a situation where they need a title certificate immediately now have a new service option called a Quick Title.
A Quick Title is an official certificate of ownership provided to a vehicle or boat owner across the counter at the time a title transaction is processed. Quick Title services are available in 16 locations around our state.
The key benefit of a Quick Title is speed. A title processed normally can take a month or more to arrive in the mail. In most circumstances, this doesn’t present any problems for vehicle or boat owners. However, sometimes an owner will lose a title and need an immediate replacement to prove ownership or sell the vehicle to someone else.
The fee to get a Quick Title is $50. This is in addition to all other fees and taxes due at the time of the transaction. Quick Titles are not available for vehicles reported to DOL as destroyed or for vehicles classified as not eligible for road use.
People seeking a Quick Title must have all of the necessary title documentation completed and ready for processing at the time of the transaction. This documentation will be carefully reviewed for completeness and accuracy before the transaction is processed.
Vehicle and boat licensing offices currently offering Quick Title services include:
- Benton County Auditor’s Office in Kennewick
- Clark County Auditor’s Office in Vancouver
- Cowlitz County Auditor’s Office in Kelso
- Franklin County Auditor’s Office in Pasco
- Jefferson County Auditor’s Office in Port Townsend
- King County Records and Licensing Services in Seattle
- Kitsap County Auditor’s Office in Port Orchard
- Klickitat County Auditor’s Office in Goldendale
- Lincoln County Auditor’s Office in Davenport
- Pierce County Auditor’s Office in Tacoma
- Skagit County Auditor’s Office in Mount Vernon
- Snohomish County Auditor’s Office in Everett
- Spokane County Auditor’s Office in Spokane
- Walla Walla County Auditor’s Office in Walla Walla
- Whatcom County Auditor’s Office in Bellingham
- Whitman County Auditor’s Office in Colfax
Quick Title counter service is not available at the Department of Licensing headquarters office in Olympia or at any location in Thurston County. But more counties are expected to begin offering this service in the future.
December 17, 2009
Vehicles on Pike Street in Seattle in 1902, prior to state vehicle licensing requirements. Photo courtesy of Washington State Digital Archives.
By Brad Benfield
The Washington State Legislature established the Motor Vehicle License Division under the Office of the Secretary of State in 1905. This new division was responsible for registering and issuing vehicle license numbers to the state’s growing number of personal vehicles.
The division issued license numbers—not license plates. The vehicle owner was responsible for creating their own license plate out of wood or leather. The license number also could be painted directly on the front and rear of the vehicle.
At this time the licensing fee for a vehicle was $2, and all vehicle licenses expired on the same day—May 31st. If a vehicle owner failed to renew their registration before June 1, their license number would be assigned to someone else and they would have to make a new set of plates or repaint them on their vehicle.
A total of 763 licenses were issued in 1905. The first of these was issued to S. A. Perkins of Tacoma on May 2nd, for a 30 horsepower Pope-Toledo touring car.