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jlm11f's avatar

If I get my new license before my birthday, will it have a "not 21 until" sign on it?

Asked by jlm11f (12340 points ) December 5th, 2009

I turn 21 in some weeks, and someone told me I can get my new driver’s license as early as a month before. But then someone else told me that if I do so it will have a “not 21 until [enter date here]” sign (or something that symbolizes that). I don’t want such a sign on my license, and if that’s the case, I will just wait till after my birthday to get my new license. I live in Ohio if that makes a difference.

I don’t really care about being able to drink, I just wanted to get the license earlier because my birthday is around the holidays and the DMV will probably be closed for a while, and then I won’t have an active license!!

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13 Answers

juwhite1's avatar

Why not call your DMV and ask?

YARNLADY's avatar

Yes, if the license is issued before your birthday, it will.

casheroo's avatar

Yep. I know I was due for a new one before my 21st birthday, and then got a different one a year later claiming I lost the previous one. (actually, I think I did because it’s not in my wallet…I keep all my licenses.) But, I had the little red bar for a year even though I was over 21.
In my state, you get a horizontal license once you are over 21, and I felt compelled to get it prior to going out of state to drink weird, I know.

sevenfourteen's avatar

In my state you just get the red lettering that says “under 21 until..” but even after your bday the license isn’t expired until another year or two so I’m going to be stuck with those red letters post-21 for a while. They can’t not give them to you if you’re not 21 because that is a huge liability and they’re the government..

La_chica_gomela's avatar

I don’t know specifically about Obio, but I can tell you that in most states, drivers licenses expire on the holder’s 21st birthday and can be renewed a month or so in advance (sometimes more). In a few states, this can be done online, but in most states not for the 21st birthday renewal. If you renew it before, you almost certainly will have a license that looks similar to the one you have now (with an “under 21 until certain date” line)

Another thing to keep in mind is that if you wait until after it expires to get a new one, you’ll most likely have to pay an extra fee.

You probably can (and should) look all this up on Ohio’s DMV website or whatever they call it there.

jlm11f's avatar

I took @La_chica_gomela‘s advice and stopped being lazy and checked out the ohio dmv site. They have the answer there (after some hunting): “A driver license or identification issued within 30 days of an individual’s 21st birthday will have the characteristics of a license or identification card issued to a person 21 years of age or older.” source. So I guess I am good to go. Stupid me for not doing this earlier.

Thanks to all who answered!!

jlm11f's avatar

Ok new update. The DMV website LIES. I just saw the license of some friends who got their’s renewed less than a month before their 21st. It has the red “not 21 till” bar on it!

casheroo's avatar

@PnL They probably don’t want people having expired licenses. It didn’t seem right that they’d do that even within 30 days.
Boo to that. You can always do what I did and tell them you lost it, and get a new non-under 21 license shortly after turning 21.

delirium's avatar

Yeah, you have to do it right after. I called and checked but when I went in they were kind of jerks about it. Sadly, they’ll make you pay a fine for being ‘late’ to renew your license if you don’t go do it on your exact birthday (which is when it usually expires). It’s kind of stupid.

(I juuuust went through all this…)

jlm11f's avatar

@delirium But what if my birthday falls on a national holiday (as it does)? Do I still have to pay a fine then? That doesn’t seem very fair!! Wah wah wah =)

La_chica_gomela's avatar

You can do it beforehand, and you can still drink after you turn 21. Bouncers know it’s a valid ID, and they’ll be able to see that your birthday has passed when it has. They’re not that dumb.

I went through all this not that long ago. My birthday was on a national holiday as well, and what I ended up having to do was get a new license in the state I go to school in. Then I eventually got another one in my home state. It was a pain in the ass. I recommend method #1: Do it beforehand.

delirium's avatar

If you do it the day after, you could probably totally get away with it!

I paid the fine mostly because I didn’t want those silly little words on it saying when I turned 21. I don’t drink anyways, so the bouncer thing isn’t really part of it for me.

jlm11f's avatar

@delirium Same. I just don’t want the words, drinking is not the issue.

@La_chica_gomela I will probablyyyyy plan to get it changed before the actual day, forget entirely or keep procrastinating because of the shitty weather and then end up paying the fine anyway. Such is life. I’ve already planned for failure ha!

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