Driver application process
A step by step guide on applying for a for-hire permit or license
Throughout your application and renewal processes, all communication will come from your TNC. You do not need to come to our office unless your TNC tells you to. King County does not provide the application status to individuals directly.
Apply with a TNC
- To obtain a for-hire permit, you must first sign up with a TNC. The TNC will send your application to King County for you. The process includes training and exam requirements.
- The TNC will help you get your vehicle inspected by an approved mechanic.
- Your TNC will tell you when your for-hire permit and vehicle decal (endorsement sticker) are ready.
- You must provide a passport quality photo of yourself to the TNC. Or, if you visit King County, we may take your photo for your for-hire permit.
Defensive Driving Class (DDC)
- First time applicants must complete the National Safety Council Defensive Driving Course. Check with your TNC about how to complete this training.
- You must display your for-hire permit and vehicle decal (endorsement sticker) for your passengers to see.
- Your for-hire permit expires one year from when King County received your application. Provide your TNC a current driver's license and vehicle registration and have your vehicle inspected in order to renew your permit and vehicle decal (endorsement sticker).
First time applicants: complete all of the steps below.
Renewing your license: complete the Application step only.
- Prepare for the For-Hire exam by downloading the Study Guide, completing the eTraining, and taking the practice exam. Print your confirmation of completion and bring it with you when you apply in our office.
- Pass the For-Hire exam external link by scoring 80% or higher or by answering a minimum of 32 questions correctly. Print your confirmation of completion and bring it with you when you apply in our office.
- New and renewal applications can be submitted online through the Seattle Services Portal external link . You can submit an application online on your own or you can email email@example.com to schedule an appointment with our staff to guide you through the process. If your state driver license number has changed since your last application, you will need an appointment with us in order to complete the online process.
- First time portal users must complete the registration process (step-by-step details are in this registration help guide external link )
- Register for a Seattle Services Portal account
- Provide identity verification information to obtain secure access to your records
- Select "Claim Your License Record(s)" to link any existing licenses (for-hire license, medallions, etc.) to your account
- New applicants can use this new application help guide external link to submit a license application.
- Renewing drivers can use this renewal help guide external link to submit a license renewal.
- During the application process, have a credit or debit card for the license application fee and your Washington State Driver License ready to verify your identity and eligibility (out of state exceptions may be ok with Military or Student ID). You will also be asked to acknowledge the Disclosure Regarding Background Investigation and to provide a passport quality photo of yourself or take a photo in our office.
- Want help? Review "how to" guides and frequently asked questions external link or email us at firstname.lastname@example.org.
- After paying your application fee, we will review your driving record and give you a form to take to the King County Sheriff's office for fingerprinting to obtain criminal history. We will contact you to schedule an appointment to appear at the Sheriff's office located in the King County Courthouse, 516 3rd Ave Room W-150, Seattle, WA 98104. Other locations for fingerprinting may become available and will be provided as options during scheduling.
Defensive Driving Course (DDC)
- Within 60 days of submitting your initial application, complete the DDC and mail, fax, or email email@example.com your completion certificate. If you pre-paid the discounted course fee with your for-hire license application, access the course at www.safetyserve.com/KingFHD external link . If you did not pre-pay for the course, access the course at www2.safetyserve.com/all-courses/ external link .
- The medallion license plates with the current year decal must be affixed to the outside of the vehicle.
- The for-hire driver license must be visible to passengers inside the vehicle.
- Your for-hire driver license expires one year from your original application date and must be renewed each year.
Note: Most cities, including Seattle, require you to have a business license to drive in their city. Check with each city you plan to drive in for their business license rules. Several cities use Filelocal-wa.gov external link for licensing.