How to do a California change of address

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Where are you moving to?

old style mailbox on the curb near a home

Whenever you move, it's essential to update your address with the relevant government agencies and service providers, including the Department of Motor Vehicles (DMV). This ensures you continue receiving important documents and services at your new location.

The process of changing your address typically involves updating your driver's license and vehicle registration information, but specifics can vary significantly by state. To help out, we’ve gathered some details for the change-of-address process in California.


Key insights

In California, you must update your address with the DMV within 10 days of moving. This includes updating your driver's license and vehicle registration if applicable.

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If you're moving to California from another state, you'll need to visit the DMV in person within 10 days to get a new California driver's license (including taking written and vision tests) and register your vehicle within 20 days.

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Current California residents can change their address online, by mail or in person at the DMV.

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In addition to updating your DMV records, you'll also need to update your address with the U.S. Postal Service, insurance providers and any subscription services or financial institutions.

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Preparing for your change of address

Before you begin the process of changing your address, it's important to gather all the necessary documents to avoid any delays or complications. Make sure you know both your old and new addresses, and plan to file your change of address within 10 days of your move.

You’ll also need the following to complete a change-of-address form in California:

  • Driver's license or state ID card
  • Vehicle registration details (if applicable)

If you’re moving to California from another state

If you’re moving to California from another state, the process for an address change is slightly more involved.

New California residents have to visit the DMV to apply for a new license within 10 days of their move. You’ll have to take a written test as well as a vision test to update your license.

If you own a vehicle, you’ll also have to register it with the DMV within 20 days of your move.

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If you’re moving within California

Current California residents can file in person at the DMV, by mail or online at dmv.ca.gov/addresschange. Just make sure to file within 10 days of your move.

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If you’re moving from California to another state

If you’re moving away from California and have a vehicle, you'll need to cancel or transfer your vehicle registration to your new state of residence and follow the new state’s specific procedures. Alert the California DMV of your registration change within 10 days of the relocation.

Where are you moving to?

FAQ

Do I need to update my driver’s license address if I’m moving within California?

Yes, you must update your driver’s license within 10 days of your move.

Can I change my address with the California DMV online, or do I need to visit a DMV office in person?

If you’re a current California resident, you can update your address in person at the DMV, online or by mail. If you’re new to California, you’ll have to file in person.

What documents do I need to bring to the DMV for a change of address?

To update your address in California, you’ll need your new and old address and your current driver's license or ID. You’ll also need vehicle information if you’re updating your car’s registration.

Is there a fee to change my address at the DMV?

There’s no fee to change your address at the DMV, but you will have to pay for a new license and vehicle registration.

Do I need to update my voter registration when I move?

When you move, especially to a different district or state, you need to update your voter registration to reflect your new address. This ensures you can vote in local elections that affect your new community and that you're assigned to the correct polling place.

Do I need to update my insurance policies when I move?

Yes, you need to update your insurance when you move. Moving can affect your insurance policies, including your auto, homeowners, renters and health coverage. For all insurance updates, it's best to contact your insurance providers directly to inform them of your move and discuss any necessary changes to your policies. This ensures continuous coverage and that your policies reflect your current needs and location.

Where else do I need to change my address?

Make sure to change your address with the Postal Service, even if your move is temporary. Also take the time to update your address with any subscription services and financial institutions.

Bottom line

Updating your address when you move ensures you remain compliant with state laws and continue receiving essential services and documents.

Be sure to check the specific requirements and procedures for changing the address on your driver's license and vehicle registration by visiting California’s DMV website or visiting in person. This will help you navigate the process smoothly and avoid any potential delays or penalties.

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