Religious Exemption and Driver’s Licenses

Posted on Nov 2 2011 in Homeschool Q&A by Yvonne Bunn

This post is part of a series titled, “Homeschool Q&A.” The series features questions we’ve received from parents on a variety of topicsand the answers!

Q. We are homeschooling for religious reasons, and my teen wants to get a driver’s license. The DMV says I need a letter. What can I do?

A. The Virginia Code requires that the Department of Motor Vehicles (DMV) have evidence a teen is receiving an education in order to issue a driver’s license. For homeschoolers, there are three documents that are usually accepted by the DMV as proof of home education: 1) a copy of a Notice of Intent form that has been submitted, 2) a superintendent’s response letter to a Notice of Intent form, or 3) a response letter from the school board acknowledging a student’s religious exemption.

If you do not have a letter from your school board acknowledging your religious exemption, you could write a letter stating your compliance with the religious exemption statute §22.1-254 (B)(1) and take it to the DMV. In this case, a notarized signature on your letter may be helpful. Some DMV representatives may accept a personal statement from you; others may not.

A second option would be to file a religious exemption letter with your school board. You can do this at any time–there is no deadline for sending a religious exemption letter to the school board. Although this may take a little longer, you would have a letter to present to the DMV.

If you do not supply acceptable proof that your student is being educated, he or she must wait until age 19 to apply for a Virginia driver’s license.

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