General Question

NoCatharsis's avatar

How do I get my DPS audit number if I've lost my driver's license?

Asked by NoCatharsis (207points) August 31st, 2009

So I lost my license and I don’t want to go to a DPS office to get a new one. I recently moved so I can disguise the loss as a change of address if only I have the DPS audit number from the license. Unfortunately I do not have a copy of the license or this would be easily solved, and I don’t know anybody around that would have a copy of it either. Can I call the DPS headquarters and ask them to give me this number? Or do I absolutely have to go in to the public office?

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37 Answers

YARNLADY's avatar

I’m not sure what a DPS audit number is, but it seems to me the first thing you should do is call the local office and ask them. You should probably report it as soon as possible, to avoid identity theft.

This is a good time to point out that everyone should either scan or otherwise copy your important papers into your computer and keep a hard copy in your files. We have copies of our Driver’s License, Social Security Card, Birth Certificate, Sign on information for various computer access sites, and anything we might later have to refer to.

NoCatharsis's avatar

@YARNLADY Thanks and that’s a good suggestion.

As for the DPS audit number, at least on Texas driver’s licenses, it’s the number shown vertically next to the picture that identifies the unique driver’s license. This changes with each renewal, change of address, or replacement. If I can find a way to get that number, then I can get a replacement for this license. I don’t think I’m in any danger of ID theft because I’m almost positive I lost the ID on my own property and if I can’t find it, nobody else can.

YARNLADY's avatar

@NoCatharsis In California, the number we start out with on our Driver’s License stays with us forever. I have memorized mine.

NoCatharsis's avatar

@YARNLADY Oh yeah, that’s the same here in Texas – you’re referring to the driver’s license number. I have mine memorized and it’s been the same for the last 12 years I’ve been driving. But there’s another unique number for that issue of the license. So when you have to go back in to get a renewal, they will give you a new DPS audit number. Or so I would think.

Darwin's avatar

Why don’t you want to admit to DPS that you have lost your driver’s license? It’s just $10, which is a lot less than the fine for being caught driving without it. That is $200 for a first conviction.

Dog's avatar

I agree with @Darwin here. I am fairly certain that without the proper information you will not get far as they would think it suspicious. Getting a replacement is your best bet.

NoCatharsis's avatar

@Darwin & @Dog I have a passport and my social security card, so I’m not quite as worried about ID at the moment. I really just can’t afford the time to sit in a DPS office waiting for my number to be called (they are open 8 AM – 5 PM M-F when I’m specifically at work just like other Americans with the standard working schedule). Plus, after my number is called, I have to wait 2 weeks to receive the driver’s license by mail. Apparently with a lost license, they have to verify that you are who you say you are and run through the bureaucracy of that before they can send it to you.

Oppositely, to just request a driver’s license address, you simply log on to their website, pay the $10, and they mail it to you with no excessive ID theft checks. Maybe I’m throwing caution to the wind, but I’m not worried about ID theft in this specific situation because I know the general area where I lost the ID and no one I mistrust will find it.

Darwin's avatar

1) Go at 7:30 am and be first in line when they open. Then it will take about 15 minutes once you are in the door.

2) They will give you a paper document right away that will suffice in case you get stopped by a cop.

3) Two weeks?! My daughter just renewed her license and they told her 6 to 8 weeks. Aren’t you special!

4) And, as I said before, $10 (and some of your precious time) trumps $200 plus a report to your insurance company if you are caught driving without it.

And yes, we are in Texas also so I, too, have stood in line at DPS.

NoCatharsis's avatar

@Darwin Wow you just made this sound a whole lot worse than what I was expecting. NOW you can see why I’d rather file it as an address change!

Darwin's avatar

No, I cannot. In my experience cops have a special radar that knows when I have left my license at home accidentally, so it never fails that I get stopped and ticketed. In my estimation, $10 and some of my time beats $200 plus a report that goes to my insurance company.

BTW, don’t forget that as of today everybody in your car must wear a seat belt, and you cannot use a cell phone when driving through a school zone (unless you are under 18; then you cannot use a cell phone when driving at all.)

Besides, you live in a state that has no state income tax – now that saves you a whole bunch of time and agony.

NoCatharsis's avatar

Well I guess I’ll just have to take your advice and get there at 7:30 tomorrow morning. That’ll put me in the office 30–60 minutes late.

Honestly I just hate being inconvenienced for the purposes of law enforcement. I have a strong moral and ethical problem with the entire philosophy. But that’s a different thread.

Darwin's avatar

Then next time don’t lose your license.

NoCatharsis's avatar

Thanks for the words of encouragement. And how do you know if it was or was not out of my hands? What about people who’s wallets are stolen? Should they have not lost their license, and instead listened to your advice?

I’m not sure how you saying that is helping me or anyone. I did not intend to lose my license.

I think this horse is dead. I was looking for a creative workaround for my situation, and instead I’ve now been told to not lose my license. Why are people on Fluther more intent on being my mother, and not on answering the question at hand?

Darwin's avatar

Because a lot of us are mothers and you sound just like my kids.

NoCatharsis's avatar

Maybe that’s part of the problem. You’ve pre-qualified me as irresponsible and lazy simply because I don’t accept the system as it currently stands. Does your statement mean you also don’t listen to your own children when they complain about the way things are? Every once in a while, the younger generation happens to have a valid thought, believe it or not.

Darwin's avatar

Yes, we listen when it is appropriate, but standing in line for a short time is not an onerous task. It is simply part of adult life. Instead, you want anyone to be able to get a copy of your license by just saying they are you over the Internet. All they would need is that number. That is not wise.

You also seem willing to risk a $200 fine and a mark on your driving record rather than spending $10 and an hour of your time. Unless you are extremely well-paid this does not seem to be worth it. It is a sign of not looking at the ramifications of your desire.

I have not qualified you as irresponsible and lazy. Instead, you have qualified yourself as short-sighted and possibly self-centered. You may not like the system as it stands, but the American way and the smart way is to follow the system as it is until you have enough power, votes, or fellow travelers to get it changed to something different.

And you may not like law enforcement procedures, but I bet you will appreciate law enforcement if you ever are a victim of a crime.

CWest's avatar

Did you ever find the answer to your question NoCatharsis? I was also stuck in the same situation but remembered that I had faxed a copy of my drivers license to my mortgage company when I applied for my loan, so I just had them give me the audit number. Doing the change of address was much easier than waiting in the line at the DMV for 30 minutes to deal with the grouchy clerks. It took about 5 minutes and eliminated the risk of a $200 fine because I didn’t have to drive anywhere and was able to print a receipt for proof. I’m still curious on how to get this number though.

NoCatharsis's avatar

I never did receive an answer to the base question (despite all of the side-tracked bickering that went on – sorry about that). In the end, I pretty much did what Darwin said and waited in line at the DPS office to get my replacement.

Not sure how it is in your area, but I spoke to a few people around here and found that the mid-morning is probably the best time to go since people are at work. The first time I went at 3 PM and the line was almost out the door. I went back at about 10 or 11 AM the next day, and I only had to wait about 10 minutes.

Not an answer to the question, but I would say in the future, make a scan of your license (and other important documents) and keep the files encrypted and locked up tight somewhere safe on a trusty site or flash drive.

Now my passport is up for renewal in 3 months, so I may go through all this again. Good luck with yours though.

navy409's avatar

hey im going threw the same thing but im in the military and was on deployment and my wallet got stole and they told me i had to come in to the DPS office which i cant cuz of right now im in florida doing training i even considered flying to texas BUT i really cant! they dont understand man that DPS sucks in texas! so yea basically what i got from them was i gotta come in and do it it what im planning now is somehow just get another license here in florida

mccll0's avatar

To Whom It May Concern (TX DPS):

How do I get my DPS Audit number for TX DL or ID if they have been either lost or stolen? Audit numbers are issued therefore, there is a source for Audit Numbers and I am guessing it is in a file or driving record. Please do not provide me the location of where the Audit Number is located on the TX ID or TX DL because that is moot if one has lost or had their TX DL or TX ID stolen. Please do not tell me I need to do more work for the TX DPS by making copies of everything that is issued from the TX DPS because that is not relevant. I am assuming you keep a driving record or driving history to have a driving record or driving history? Does the TX DPS file information and have records? Please do not pre-qualify me as lazy or irresponsible based on theft or loss of license or id. My question is not, if the TX DPS keeps records of personal moral assertions. My question is, what is my Audit Number? If the TX DPS’s responsibility has nothing to do with providing answers to what is dictated as an answer, an Audit Number, as the TX DPS is the source of this Audit Number, then what nebulous entity may I pray to in the hopes of receiving my Audit Number? Is Central able to discern based on the information they gather on individuals through their driving record or history, who they may provide information to about their own driving record or history? What is the point of a driving record or history to provide information or answers if information and answers “can not be provided”? If this is the case, which it is not, then why are Audit Numbers issued?

Please provide me with the “answer” as in the Audit Number dictated and assigned to my ID or DL.

Thank You.

(I will let you guys and gals know if I receive an answer to this inquiry sent to TX DPS.)

montrynikki's avatar

I have absolutly no idea if every dps has the same # or not, but if they do, do you know anyone who renewed/received a license from your dps? I am in the same boat right now, and had the same fabulous idea since I recently moved as well, but can not test my theory because my family is out of town. Sorry I am not much more help, hope it works out for ya.

rockinmoxie's avatar

The first two numbers in the audit number on a TX DL is the issue year. I am looking for information for the rest of the sequence.

denikea's avatar

I don’t want to go to DPs either. I have warrants and they will arrest me for old tickets. I can’t pay them at this time

Akunamatata's avatar

i know I am late on this topic but for future reference if you lost your id and do not have a copy…get a copy from your job, landlord or just try and remember who you recently went to that had to get a copy of your id…i was in the same boat and thats what i had to do…worked out perfectly for me…however, know i’ve got like 20copies in my portfolio at home.:)

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ascarlott's avatar

I am not quoting Texas Law, but I will tell you that I have gotten pulled over and did not have my license with me, but assured the officer it was current and valid and gave him my drivers license number and my address and a copy of my current insurance and “viola’” ~ no ticket.

So saying that it is an “automatic $200 fine” is not true, as long as it is not EXPIRED or SUSPENDED and you are not driving around without a temporary or special needs license.

And just for the record, I TOTALLY agree that berating and admonishing while never bothering to try and answer the original question is not helpful at all. And I am not a kid or a teenager, I am a grown mother of two adult children, and for convenience sake, I would LOVE to know the answer to this.

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Simine9109's avatar

Lol you better be nice to your mother!!! :)

susanr's avatar

Cops do not have a special radar that knows when you leave your license at home. That’s the most ridiculous thing I’ve ever heard. I lost mine but kept a copy that has the audit number on it. All I did was pay $11.00 online and got a new one.

Mollybmorris's avatar

Same question… can I get my audit number if license is gone?

fofi's avatar

To Darwin (and the other Darwins reading this):

If, in fact, in your experiences, law enforcement used this special radar to illegally detain and question you, each time you unconscionably left DL at home but made decision to drive anyway, it seems you would have grounds for a lawsuit or at minimum, dismissal of alleged $200 fine ticket(s), whereby negating any possibility of any insurance company finding offense(s) on your driving record*. I am aware that, at least in Texas, driving is not a “right” but a “privilege”; however, as a citizen, you do still have rights. If I were you, I would pursue justice at the level of righteousness you seem to apply to other matters of TX DPS Law.

- *Law Enforcement does not “send” information about traffic violations to drivers’ insurance companies. My guess is this is due to administrative impracticality.

(good grief)

To all others using this forum as a way to get information, I am going to DPS tomorrow (it’s not as bad as the offices in Dallas where I used to live down here in small town Tx USA) and I am going to shake them down in person for the answer. I will update on my results.

JeSuisRickSpringfield's avatar

@fofi I don’t think that @Darwin was being serious. It was just a hyperbolic way of saying that every time he forgets his license, he gets pulled over. No conspiracy theories here.

jaysun_83's avatar

This entire argument is flawed because we live in a world where information is at your and the officer’s finger tips. It should not be required that you need to have anything physical to show that you have paid the state fees to be allowed to drive. (Identification is a completely different matter) They simply ask for your DL# or your name and/or SSN/birthdate and your driving record and an image of you should pop up. Giving someone a ticket for just not having a license with them just seems to be a scheme to create funds through meaningless violations. The ticket will even be dismissed (still have to pay court fees) if you show up with the license, but again meaningless.

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