It's possible to check driving records by going to a local Department of Motor Vehicles office, a state's Department of Motor Vehicles or Department of Public Safety website, or by contacting the state's licensing department. For example, drivers in Washington state can visit Washington State's Department of Licensing website, while drivers in Ohio can check Ohio's Bureau of Motor Vehicles website.
Checking an individual's driving record is important to ascertain current or past traffic violations and tickets, the amount of points against the driver's license, and whether or not a license is valid. The points system is not used in every state. In states that use this type of system, points are added or subtracted to a driver's record, and the accumulation of these points can determine whether a driver can keep his license. If a driver does not know that he has a suspended license, he can face penalties and jail time if he is caught driving.
Many states, including Florida, Ohio and New York, charge a fee for obtaining a driving record. The record can be the driver's full driving record beginning on the date when the driver's first license was obtained or the record can include only a few years' worth of information. The records may be viewable online, or they can be sent through the mail.