Office of International Student & Scholar Services

Obtaining an Ohio Driver's License

If you have a valid International Driver’s License or a valid driver’s license from another U.S. state, you may drive a car in Ohio for up to one year from the date of your arrival in the U.S. Your I-20 or DS-2019 must have been issued for a duration of time that exceeds one year in order to obtain an Ohio Drivers License. However, if you purchase a car and register it in your name, or if you do not have a valid driver’s license from Ohio, read the procedure for obtaining an Ohio Driver’s license.

More detailed information about getting an Ohio driver’s license and license plates can be found in the Digest of Ohio Motor Vehicle Laws. (also available in Español and Somali). You can also find information for new Ohio residents who hold a valid driver’s license from another state and want to get an Ohio driver’s license in the Digest. Please make sure you purchase auto insurance. It’s against the law to drive without it!

Non-Renewable/Non-Transferable Driver License or ID Card

An Ohio driver license will be issued for the same time as your immigration document.  For more information, see Ohio BMV.

Change Your Address

Change your address on your license on-line at Ohio BMV online Services.


Find the fees for driver's license and state identification cards at Ohio BMV Documents and Fees.

Temporary Permit

Learn about obtaining a temporary driving permit at the BMV Temporary Permit page.

State Identification Cards

Learn how to get an Ohio Identification Card.

Bureau of Motor Vehicles Locations

Find a BMV location at the BMV Local Office page.

Auto Insurance

In order to obtain license plates for a car, you will be required to show proof that you have auto insurance. Many companies offer a variety of auto insurance policies, so you should shop around.  When you have selected a policy, read it carefully before signing any documents.

Last Updated: 5/11/23