Getting someone’s driver’s license is not an easy matter because such personal information is protected to a great deal by privacy laws, as it should be. The last thing you need is a stalker or prankster to be able to get your personal information with little effort, a few bucks and no legitimate reason to have it.
Indeed, the DPPA (Driver’s Privacy Protection Act) is a federal law passed in the 1990s and updated in 2000 specifically designed to protect drivers’ personal information from searches and clearly restricts the reasons why anyone can have access to drivers license records.
Online ads for drivers license searches often state they can get this information easily, but careful reading of their sites…at least legitimate sites…makes it clear that access is restricted to people with a legitimate need for such Department of Motor Vehicles records…for example, employment or court purposes.
Now, while the DPPA restricts access to personally identifiable information such as a person’s name, license number, and address, it does not cover information about the person’s driving record, status, moving violations and other non-personal information, so it’s easier to see a person’s records if you already have their driver’s license number (particularly if you also have their signed permission).
On the other hand, if you already have a legitimate reason to see their driving record you may not have to search for their drivers license number as driving records often include the driver’s license number. They may not, however, provide other personal information, such as the home address.
Should you opt for using one of the online third-party services that help people search for drivers license numbers, be aware that they are not free. They also must meet the various state restrictions as the DPPA allows states to have more restrictive policies about revealing driver license records, and you may find you don’t get the information you’re hoping for. (California, for example, only includes the driver’s name.)
Even with those restrictions, using a third-party service will generally be more cost-effective than hiring a private detective, and will certainly will likely be more successful than you trying to find this information on your own.