Driving License in Chennai

A driving license is extremely important if you want to keep driving your two-wheeler or four-wheeler in any part of Chennai. The Motor Vehicles Act of 1988 makes it mandatory to obtain one before driving a vehicle on the road. Applicants for a transport vehicle need to submit their medical fitness certificate while applying for their driving license. Also, people who are over the age of 50 also need to submit their fitness certificate while applying for the same.

Eligibility for Getting a Driving License in Chennai

  • One must be at least 18 years of age to get hold of a driving license.
  • For gearless bikes, 16 is the permissible age for holding a license.
  • Prior to getting the permanent permit, you must have a valid learner’s license.
  • Apply for the permanent license when the learner’s license is between one and six months old.
  • The license for a commercial vehicle is issued to a driver who is 20 years and above.
  • You must be aware of all the traffic rules to apply for a commercial driving license.

Application Procedure Followed in Chennai For Getting a Driving License

  • To apply for the learner’s license and a permanent one, the applicant must be present in person.
  • You will need forms 1,2, 3, and 14 for applying for the learner’s license. The last one is for those who have learned to drive through driving schools.
  • For the driving license, you will need to apply using forms 4 and 5.

Appointment Booking For License

Online Method for New License

  • The appointment for the test can be booked online once the applicant has been confirmed as eligible.
  • You will need to log on to tnsta.gov.in. This is the official site of the Tamil Nadu Transport Authority.
  • An online form will appear for booking an appointment for driving license. Don’t forget to get a print out of the same.
  • The applicant will have to fill in the details and select a date and time for the test within 30 days from the date of application.
  • Submit the form once it is filled.

Offline Method

  • The application for the driving test can be initiated offline by submitting the application at the RTO office nearest to you in Chennai.
  • You will be informed regarding the eligibility and the driving test date.
  • On the day of the test, be present at the RTO office with your vehicle.

Clearing your Driving Test

Clearing the driving test requires a bit of nerve along with skill.

  • If you are test driving for a motorcycle, then, within a distance of 20 meters you will need to make an imaginary No. 8 with the vehicle to pass the test. You must show the hand signals and the indicators at the turnings and stop when the RTO officer signals you to stop the vehicle. The legs should not touch the ground as you stop.
  • For cars, the gears should be shifted smoothly so that the car progresses easily. The mirrors should be used to check the side of the roads. RTO supervisors usually sit inside the car while you are driving it to check the manner of driving and the way the clutch is being released.
  • If you have successfully passed the test, then, you will be issued the driving license. It will reach your postal address.
  • In case the applicant is unsuccessful, then, he will have to take the test again later on.

Check the Status of the Driving License

  • The status of the driving license can be checked online by visiting the official website of the Ministry of Road Transport and Highways (www.sarathi.nic.in).
  • It can also be checked offline by visiting the RTO.

How To Renew Your Driving License In Chennai

Lapsed licenses have to be renewed within 30 days of the date of expiry.

  • The license holder has to apply for the renewal process.
  • In case the applicant has been disqualified, his driving license cannot be renewed.
  • The renewal has to be done within five years of the date of expiry.
  • If more than five years have passed, then, the applicant will have to take a driving test again.

Documents required for the renewal

  • Driving license
  • Age proof
  • Passport sized photos
  • Renewal form (Form 9). This can be downloaded from the website of the RTO.
  • A physical fitness certificate in case the driver is more than 50 years of age (Form 1A).
  • A physical fitness certificate (Form 1).
  • If the driving license has been obtained from any other RTO, then a no objection certificate is necessary.
  • The form requires to be submitted to the RTO office near to the applicant’s residence.
  • The document will be released once the procedure from the RTO is complete.
  • The applications fee will be around Rs. 200 along with any late fees, but for the current amount, you will need to visit the RTO official website.
  • Once the verification process is over, the license will be issued by authority directly to the applicant.

How To Apply For A Duplicate Driving License

A duplicate license is necessary in case the original one is lost, stolen or damaged. If, however, the license has been seized or disqualified then the applicant cannot ask for a duplicate one.

Documents needed for applying for a duplicate one

  • Passport-sized photo
  • Application form
  • Driving license number and other details
  • If it has been stolen, then, the copy of the police FIR.

What is the Application Procedure

  • The application form for a duplicate license has to be submitted in person to the RTO officer of the area.
  • An application fee of Rs. 215 has to be submitted along with the application form for the procedure.
  • Ideally, the application for replacement should be made right after the loss of the card. In case there is a gap of six months between the loss and application, then, it has to be sent to the headquarters of the transport department and might take a long time as an enquiry is required to be done.

Applying For An International Driving License

The driving license can be used to drive the vehicle within India, but in case the holder is visiting abroad, this card is insufficient for renting or buying or driving a car there. In such cases, an international driving license will be required.

  • You will need to be more than 18 years of age.
  • A valid license is necessary.
  • If the license has been suspended, then the applicant cannot apply.
  • Only the residents of Tamil Nadu will be able to apply for the license. Those who have shifted to Tamil Nadu from other states need to change their residential address and then apply for the international driving license.
  • Normally, a driving test is not required for an international license, but, in case the applicant has received the license within three months of applying for the international card, then, that person will have to retake the driving test in order to get the driving license.

Documents To Be Submitted For The Purpose

  • Application form for international driving
  • Copy of valid license
  • Copy of Visa and passport
  • Passport-sized photo
  • Medical certificate

Fee for International Driving License

  • Applicants need to pay Rs 500 to the RTO for the application process.
  • The license is issued once the documents have been verified.

How to Change the Residential Address on the License

If you recently re-located to some part of Chennai, and thus want to change the address on the driving license, the address can be changed for a license that has not been disqualified or suspended by the authorities. The application has to be filed by the owner of the driving license.

Documents Needed to Change Address

  • Proof of address
  • Driving license

Procedure for Application

  • The application has to be addressed to the RTO along with the charges of Rs. 215.
  • The new driving license with the changed address will be available in about three days.

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