Every state has a special department that issues driver's licenses,
makes sure drivers are qualified, and performs various other duties
that help regulate the potentially dangerous activity of driving. In
California, these functions and many others are handled by the
California Department of Motor Vehicles, or the DMV for short. This
page tells the story of how the California DMV began and how the
organization has evolved over time.
California DMV History
As hard as it is to picture life in California without dealing with
the DMV, the department didn't always exist. Prior to the invention of
the automobile, there was no need for the California DMV. After all,
there was no license required to drive a horse-drawn carriage. Read more...
California DMV Office Locations
Find a DMV Office in your area. Read more...
California DMV Services
Today, the DMV offers many services. They are responsible for
registering California vehicles, collecting taxes on them, and making
sure that vehicles driven in California meet California pollution
control standards. They are also responsible for managing California
drivers, making sure that all licensed drivers are not only physically
and mentally capable of driving, but also that they have enough
knowledge to be able to drive safely. The California DMV accomplishes
this task by testing new drivers, issuing licenses, and revoking them
when it becomes obvious that a driver is abusing his or her driving
privileges. Read more...