North Carolinians could soon be able to carry their state-issued driver’s licenses on their phone in an effort to modernize the driver’s license system.

The bill introduces the concept of a supplemental digital driver’s license in North Carolina and authorizes digital versions starting in 2025. It was approved by the House on second reading Wednesday afternoon in a 111-3 vote after approval from the Senate earlier this week.

A mobile ID issued by the Commissioner of the Division of Motor Vehicles (DMV) would contain the same data as a traditional driver’s license and be displayed on a device owned by the holder. 

Legally, the mobile driver’s license will be equivalent to a physical driver’s license, but before then, the DMV must conduct a comprehensive study and develop a plan addressing several critical areas.

The study will also evaluate whether the DMV or a third-party vendor will handle the implementation, potential revenue changes, and measures for ensuring the security and confidentiality of driver’s license information. Additionally, the plan must consider the perspectives of state and local law enforcement to prevent unintended violations of constitutional rights. 

The DMV must report its findings, including any legislative recommendations, to the North Carolina General Assembly by January 1, 2025. The bill’s provisions for the mobile driver’s license will take effect on July 1, 2025. 

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The bill also includes multiple legislative changes to the DMV amid ongoing customer complaints. The Division must study using alternative materials for registration plates and other ways to modernize the issuance of dealer plates.

Prices at all DMVs across the state are set to increase beginning on July 1. Additionally, the Division will begin charging a credit card processing fee, the NC Department of Transporation announced on Wednesday.