Getting your Mississippi Driver's License

In order to obtain a Mississippi driver’s license, you must visit the Department of Motor Vehicles located on Tatum Industrial Drive. 

Map of route from Southern Miss to DMV on Tatum Drive

Mississippi Department of Motor Vehicles hours are:
Monday – Friday, 8 am - 4:30 pm

PLEASE NOTE: Payment can be made with cash, visa or master card.

Take the following items if you want a driver’s license for one (1) year:

  1. Unexpired foreign passport
  2.  I-94 arrival/departure card
  3.  I-20 or DS-2019
  4. Proof of physical residence

         * If you live on campus, you will need a letter from Residence Life on official university letterhead giving your exact physical address. This letter must be notarized.

         * If you live off campus, you will need a recent bank statement, license plate receipt, or a utility bill that has been stamped by the U.S. Post Office.

      5.  Birth certificate, both original document and English translation on university letterhead.

      6.  $21 for the cost of the driver’s license (fees subject to change without notice)

           $21 if you are renewing your license (fees subject to change without notice)


NOTE:           Be aware that this option is only for a one (1)  year valid driver’s license. You must renew every year you have this type of license.

Take the following items if you want a license for four (4) years:

  1. See above numbers 1-4
  2. Social Security card
  3. Birth certificate, both original document and English translation on university letterhead.
  4. $21 for the cost of the driver’s license (fees subject to change without notice)

NOTE:           This option is for a four (4) year valid driver’s license. You must renew every four years you have this type of license.

  • If you have a valid international driver’s license you will be responsible for taking just the written exam, not the driver’s test. If you do not have an international driver’s license, you must take both the written and driver’s exam.

Car insurance requirements:

Liability insurance in the state of Mississippi is REQUIRED BY LAW! It is illegal to drive in the state of Mississippi without auto insurance.

Beginning January 2006, drivers in Mississippi must maintain a minimum of liability insurance on all owned vehicles. You must also carry proof of insurance in your car at all times.

The minimum coverage required by law includes:

  • $25,000 per person (single accident)
  • $50,000 per accident for bodily injury
  • $25,000 per accident for property damage

For a first-time offense of not having the required car insurance, you will be fined $1,000 and your license will be suspended for one year, or until you provide proof of insurance. Stronger penalties occur on second and subsequent offenses if you fail to get proper insurance coverage.

More information about car insurance requirements, as well as links to insurance providers is provided at the following website:

What to do in case of an accident:

  • Call the police, even if you think an officer is not needed or if the other vehicle owner says not to.
  • Be sure to get names, addresses, phone numbers, tag numbers, and insurance information from the other parties involved in the accident. If possible, also take down driver’s license numbers of the other drivers.
  • Contact your insurance agent as soon as possible after the accident.
  • To help you remember the details of the accident at a later date, write down everything you can about the accident as soon as you can. Your version of what happened, positions of the cars, information about the weather, road conditions, traveling speeds, and damages done to all vehicles will be needed later.
  • Get the names and phone numbers of any witnesses to the accident.

Insurance tips

Mississippi provides a list of tips to help keep your car insurance affordable.

  • Keep a good driving record. Avoid accidents, speeding tickets, and driving under the influence of alcohol or drugs.
  • Choose a higher deductible.
  • Ask your insurance agent about multi-car, student, safe-driving, and educational discounts. You may also get discounts for purchasing your homeowner’s/renter’s and automobile insurance form the same company.
  • Pay your premiums regularly and on time. Late payments affect rates.
  • Before you buy a car, research insurance costs. Some cars have higher insurance rates than others because of performance or safety. Sports cars usually have higher insurance rates.
  • Teen drivers will save money by staying on their parent’s policy as long as possible, rather than setting up a policy themselves.

Where to file a complaint against an insurance company

If you are involved in an accident and feel the insurance company has not provided what you have been paying for, you can contact the Mississippi Insurance Department to hear your complaint. Call or write to:

Mississippi Insurance Department

1001 Woolfolk State Office Building

501 North West Street

Jackson, MS 39201

Toll-free: 1-800-562-2957

Jackson area: 601-359-2453