What Counts As Proof of Residency In Montana?

Your paystubs, utility bills, and bank statements can all prove your Montana residency. Here are some other acceptable documents.
Written by Shannon Fitzgerald
Reviewed by Kathleen Flear
Paystubs, utility bills, and car insurance statements all count as proof of residency in Montana. But there are several other acceptable documents you can use, as well. 
Before you can drive off with your new Montana driver’s license, you’ll first need to prove to the Montana Department of Justice (DOJ) that you actually have a permanent residence within the state. Unlike proving your identity, a government photo ID isn’t always sufficient evidence, though—generally, you will need an official resource that states both your legal name and your address. 
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What documents can be used as proof of residency in Montana?

When you apply for a standard or commercial Montana driver’s license, transfer your resident, or renew an expired Montana license, you’ll need to prove your permanent Montana residency. Generally, this can be done by providing two of Montana’s acceptable residency documents.
Provided each document states your legal name along with your Montana address, the following forms of residence verification are accepted by the DOJ: 
  • Current
    Montana car insurance
    or life insurance policy or statement 
  • Bank or credit card statement
  • Original rental agreement or rent payment receipt signed by your landlord or rental agent 
  • If you’ve attended school within four months of the application—certified copy of school records
  • If issued within the last four months: 
    • paycheck or paystub 
    • bank statement 
    • utility bill or utility hook-up service receipt or order 
    • first class mail with postmark
  • Montana voter registration card 
  • Receipt for personal or property tax paid to Montana or a Montana county within the last year 
  • Last year’s income tax return from the U.S. or Montana 
  • Mortgage or equity loan papers 
  • Vehicle title and registration 
  • Montana hunting or fishing license or permit
  • Valid Montana REAL ID
  • Signed written statement from the applicant’s parent, guardian, or adult child with whom the applicant resides stating that the applicant lives there—this must be paired with proof of Montana residency for the individual vouching for the applicant’s residency 
The Montana street address provided within these documents must match the address written in the driver license application. However, in the event that an applicant is experiencing homelessness, they can alternatively provide a written statement describing the location of their residence. This needs to be verified via written statement from a social service on the agency’s letterhead, and a separate mailing address must be given. 

What documents do not qualify as proof of Montana residency?

Though Montana is fairly flexible about its accepted proofs of residency, any document with a business, PO Box, or rental mail box address will NOT be accepted. You must also be sure that your full, legal name appears on the document alongside your physical Montana address. 
Certain counties may have more specific requirements for which two documents you may submit, so be sure to check in with your
local Montana driver license station
, as well. 

What qualifies as proof of authorized presence in Montana? 

Proving your residency in Montana is just one of three verification steps you will need to take when obtaining your Montana license. You will also need to provide proof of your authorized presence in the U.S. along with proof of your identity. 
The following documents qualify as acceptable proof of your authorized presence
  • Original or certified birth certificate from a government agency 
  • Valid, unexpired U.S. passport
  • Valid, unexpired U.S. passport card 
Alternatively, you can use one of the following: 
  • Consular Report of Birth Abroad 
  • Digital ID for federally recognized Native tribe 
  • Valid, unexpired non-U.S. passport with: United States Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) form I-94 OR I-551 permanent resident stamp 
  • Valid, unexpired: certificate of naturalization or citizenship, Northern Mariana card, American Indian card, U.S. Citizen ID card, permanent resident card, temporary resident ID card, U.S. re-entry permit, refugee travel document, employment authorization card

What qualifies as proof of identity in Montana?

Proving your identity in Montana is a little trickier than proving your residency. The required documents you’ll need are split into two categories: primary and secondary documents. You will either need to provide two primary documents or one of each. Out-of-state license transfers will additionally need to hand over their driver’s license from their previous state. 
Here’s what qualifies as a primary document in Montana: 
  • Color photo driver license or ID card (issued by the U.S. or Canada)
  • Certified birth certificate (issued by the U.S. or Canada) 
  • Valid, unexpired passport (issued by the U.S. Department of State) 
  • Consular Report of Birth Abroad 
  • Digital ID from a federally recognized Native tribe located within Montana (must include an image of the applicant, their date of birth, and their tribal enrollment number) 
  • Unexpired military ID card (issued by the U.S. Department of Defense) 
  • Learner’s permit with photo ID (issued by U.S. or Canada) 
  • Prison inmate ID card (issued by Montana Department of Corrections) 
  • Emergency ID photo that includes name and birth date (issued by a driving license authority of the U.S. or Canada) 
  • Valid, current passport issued by a non-U.S. jurisdiction AND either: 
    • USCIS form I-94 
    • I-551 permanent resident stamp
  • A valid USCIS document, such as: form N-550, N-570, N-578, N-560, N-561, N-645, I-551 with “Northern Mariana”, “American Indian”, or “permanent resident” imprinted, form I-179, I-197, I-688, I-327, I-571, I-688A or B, I-766, I-94 with “refugee” stamped
Here’s what qualifies as a secondary document
  • Original social security card (issued by the U.S. or Canada) 
  • Certified copy of your marriage certificate or license 
  • Driver license or ID card that is between one and five years expired 
  • Current government employee photo ID (issued by the U.S. or Canada) 
  • Certified copy of a court order or judgment (issued by the U.S. or Canada) 
  • Certified copy of a birth certificate not issued by the U.S. or Canada 
  • Certified discharge release (issued by the U.S. Department of Defense) 
  • Medicare, medicaid, or health insurance card 
  • Current color photo ID permit for a firearm or concealed weapon (issued by a chief of police in a full-time police department, or a county sheriff) 
  • Valid pilot’s license (issued by the U.S. Department of Transportation) 
  • Transcripts or certified copy of school records (including date of birth and full name) 
  • Completion certificate for a Montana driver’s ed course 
  • Current school photo ID 
  • Certified copy of the applicant’s child’s birth certificate if the applicant’s name and date of birth as parent is listed 
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