How Do I...? - Family & Home
- How do I request my credit report?
A new law requires credit reporting agencies to provide any Maine consumer one free copy of his or her credit report annually. You can print the request form from the Maine Consumer Credit Regulation website.
- How do I plan my move to Maine?
See our Maine.gov Moving to Maine guide at http://www.maine.gov/portal/family/moving.html
- How do I find tax forms?
State tax forms are available online from the Revenue Services website, or may be picked up at the Revenue Services office or at local post offices during tax season. You also may be eligible to file your taxes online. For federal tax forms, visit the IRS website at http://www.irs.gov/ .
- How do I find public transportation?
Find a transit provider in your county on the Department of Transportation Explore Maine website.
- How do I order a copy of a birth, marriage, divorce or death certificate?
See our Maine.gov Vital Records page for a guide to locating records and ordering copies of birth, marriage, divorce, and death certificates.
- How do I find a city or town website?
See the Maine.gov Local Government Portal. You can view a list of all counties and towns, or search for a specific county or town. Every Maine county, city, and town has a page on Maine.gov, with contact information, facts, officials, and other resources.
- How do I pay a traffic ticket?
You may pay tickets by mail to the Violations Bureau, in person at the Maine District Court at 85 Park Street in Lewiston, or you may use the PayTixx system to pay online at http://www.paytixx.com/ or by phone with a credit card. To pay by phone, call (866) PAY-TIXX (729-8499). For more traffic violations information, see the violations FAQ.
- How do I get a firearms permit?
Weapons permits are issued by the Maine Department of Public Safety. For information, call (207) 624-7210 or visit the State Police website at http://www.maine.gov/dps/msp/licenses/weapons_permits.html .
- How do I find a lawyer?
The Maine Bar Association offers a free Lawyer Information & Referral Service at http://www.mainebar.org/lawyer_need.asp .
- How do I register my snowmobile or ATV?
ATV and snowmobile registrations are handled by the Maine Department of Inland Fisheries & Wildlife, (207) 287-8000. You can read about ATV Registration on the IF&W website. Snowmobile rules and registration information. Residents can renew ATV and snowmobile registrations online.
- How do I register my boat?
Boat registration is handled through the Maine Department of Inland Fisheries and Wildlife, (207) 287-8000. Many municipal offices also can complete a registration for you. You will need to pay excise tax on the boat to your town office before registering the boat. For more information, see the IF&W website .
- How do I order a water test kit?
Drinking water test kits are available through the Health and Environmental Testing Laboratory by calling (207) 287-2727 or you may order a kit online at http://www.informe.org/hetl/ .
- How do I register my car?
For step by step instructions about how to register your car, visit the BMV website at http://www.maine.gov/sos/bmv/registration/reginfo.htm .
- How do I renew my vehicle registration?
Reminders are not sent out, so remember to renew by the end of the month a year to the date you registered. Go to the town government office and bring your old registration certificate and your up-to-date insurance papers to renew and pay your fee. If it has expired, you must register as soon as possible: there isn't a late fee, but you will be in danger of receiving a warning, then a summons, if found with an expired registration. If nothing has changed on your registration (such as your name or address) you can do rapid online registration in participating cities in Maine. Vehicle Registration Renewal Online (Rapid Renewal)
- How do I check the status of a registration renewal?
To check your renewal status, call the BMV at (207) 624-9000, extension 52149.
- How do I change my address or name on my vehicle registration?
If you are in Maine, you can change your address or name by visiting your municipal office or a Bureau of Motor Vehicles branch office with your current registration and your new address or name change proof. They will make the change and provide you with a new registration on that visit. If you are out of state or would like to handle this through the mail, complete a copy of the address change form (available at your municipal or branch office or, in the case of the out-of-state registrant, mail us a notarized letter with your new address or proof of name change), and mail it to Bureau of Motor Vehicles, ATTN: Reg Address Change, 101 Hospital St, Augusta, ME 04333. We will mail back a copy of your corrected registration. There is no cost for this service.
- How do I get a copy of my vehicle registration certificate?
You can obtain a duplicate registration certificate for a registration that has not yet expired by using our on-line service. You can also obtain a duplicate registration from your municipal office or any branch office of the Bureau of Motor Vehicles. The fee on-line is 3 dollars; at the town or branch is 2 dollars.
- How do I obtain new license plates with my current registration?
Use the BMV form for new plates or duplicate plates - the form is available on the BMV website at http://www.maine.gov/sos/bmv/forms/index.html . It costs $11 for a set of plates and a new sticker. If you believe they have been stolen it is advised that you write a letter of cancellation and obtain new numbers. If the registration is under more than one name, all parties must sign the letter and have it notarized.
- How do I find out about vehicle safety inspections?
Maine requires all motor vehicles to undergo a safety inspection once a year. Vehicles registered in Cumberland County are also required to undergo an emissions test. You can get a safety inspection at many local mechanics and auto repair shops - make sure the shop is licensed by the state to conduct safety inspections. Inspections are regulated by the Maine State Police. For more information, call (207) 624-8939 or visit the State Police website at http://www.maine.gov/dps/msp/vehiclesinspections/motorvehicle_inspections.html .
- How do I obtain disability license plates?
An application is filled out by your doctor and mailed to the Secretary of State or taken to a local BMV Branch Office. The form is available on the BMV website at http://www.maine.gov/sos/bmv/forms/index.html . To be eligible for disability plates, you must have a permanent disability. Disability placards may also be obtained and these are issued free of charge.
- How do I register a motorcycle?
The process for registration is the same as for a car, but the fees are different. There is a $21 registration fee and for motorcycles 300ccs or greater a title is needed. For detailed instructions, visit the BMV website at http://www.maine.gov/sos/bmv/registration/mcreg.htm .
- How do I obtain a learner's permit?
To get a permit, you must be at least 15 years of age and have successfully completed an approved driver education course, then complete a written knowledge examination and a vision screening. The permit allows you to operate a vehicle when accompanied by a licensed driver who is at least 20 years old and has held a valid license for two consecutive years. The permit is generally valid for 18 months. In most cases the driver education provider will have the forms processed for you through the Bureau of Motor Vehicles and you will receive your permit in the mail. For detailed information, visit the BMV website at http://www.maine.gov/sos/bmv/licenses/permit.html .
- How do I obtain my first driver's license?
To obtain a driver's license you must successfully complete a driver knowledge examination and vision screening. You must be at least 16 years of age and have completed an approved driver education course. If you are 18 years of age or older you are not required to complete driver education. You must successfully complete a road test. If you are under 21 years of age, you are required to complete 35 hours of practice driving, which must include five hours of night driving, and have held your instruction permit for at least six months. For detailed information, visit the BMV website at http://www.maine.gov/sos/bmv/licenses/getlicense.html .
Note: The first license issued to a new applicant under 21 years of age is provisional for a period of two years. In addition, if you were issued a license on or after August 11, 2000 and are less than 18 years of age, you are prohibited from carrying passengers other than immediate family members for a period of 90 days, unless you are accompanied by another licensed driver who is at least 20 years of age and has held a valid license for the past two years. If you are at least 21 years of age, your first license will be provisional for a period of one year. If a person is convicted of a moving violation that occurred while operating with a provisional license, the license will be suspended for 60 days. Second and third offenses involve more severe penalties.
The Class C and motorcycle license/permit examination costs $10 and a Photo License (six-year license) is $30.00.
Am I required to take a driving school class before I can apply for a driver's license?
If you are 18 years of age or older you are not required to complete driver education, but you must successfully complete a road test.
What do I do if I fail either the written or driving part of the test?
You can retake the exams. Should you fail either the written or road test you will be instructed at that time on how to proceed with applying for a retest.
- How do I renew my driver's license?
You will receive a notice in the mail four to six weeks prior to expiration. If you have a digital license and meet other eligibility requirements, you may now renew your license online. Or you may visit a BMV Branch Office, a mobile unit site or third-party agent and pay the necessary fees for renewal.
If your license has already expired: You won't have to retake any tests if you renew any time up to five years after your license expires. After five years, however, you'll have to retake the driving and written exams.
- How do I change my address on my driver's license?
Maine law requires you to notify the Secretary of State within 30 days of any change in your name or address. As of April 18, 2008, you are required to show proof of your Maine residential address to BMV branch office personnel before an address change request can be processed. For more information about this requirement, please visit our website at ( http://www.maine.gov/sos/bmv/licenses/residency.htm ) or call 624-9000, ext. 52114.
- How do I replace a lost or stolen driver's license?
If you have a digital license, you may now order a replacement license online. Or visit your local branch office with two proofs of identity.
- How do I convert my out-of-state driver's license?
You cannot transfer your previous license directly. You need to fill out the Maine license forms at a BMV branch office, take a vision screening, and pay the license fee. If your previous license was current, you do not need to take a road or written test. BMV Branch Office Locations - http://www.maine.gov/sos/bmv/locations/index.html
- How do I obtain a non-driver state ID card?
Any Maine resident may apply for an official state non-driver identification card. State ID cards are issued at all motor vehicle branch offices and mobile unit sites. The fee is $5.00. Bring two forms of identification -- one must indicate your date of birth and the other must bear your written signature. BMV Branch Office Locations - http://www.maine.gov/sos/bmv/locations/index.html
- How do I get a license for driving a motorcycle?
You can have the motorcycle license added onto your regular license. There is a different learner's permit, test and license for motorcycles. However, the license is usually an addendum to your regular automobile license.
In order to obtain a motorcycle endorsement on your Maine license you will need to take a rider course. The course you will need is a 15 hour hands-on course called the Basic Rider Course (BRC). To find a listing of BRC courses available in your area, please visit http://nm.msf-usa.org/msf/ridercourses.aspx?state=ME . Upon successful completion of this course, the state will waive the road test.
The other alternatives would be to enroll in a classroom-only course and this course is offered in Maine only. The MMSEC course is an 8-hour classroom-only course and is designed to introduce the new rider to techniques to minimize risk to riders. These courses are made available through a variety of providers such as driving school. You can also check with motorcycle dealers to see whom they use. After you complete this 8-hour course, you will be eligible to receive an instruction permit. Once you obtain your instruction permit and when you feel ready, you can apply to take a road test.
- How do I obtain a copy of my driving record?
BMV offers an online Driver's Record service so that you can obtain a copy of your record immediately - http://www.informe.org/bmv/drc/ . There is a $7-$10 fee for each record, depending on whether you request a 3 year or 10 year record. Alternatively, you can obtain a copy of your driving record by mail from the Bureau of Motor Vehicles. Instructions are online at http://www.maine.gov/sos/bmv/licenses/drrecord.html .
- How do I get Maine weather and climate information?
- How do I find out about Maine driving laws and highways?
Visit the Driving Laws & Roads page for information about laws, roads, and road conditions.
- How do I find Alzheimer's care and support?
Visit the resource page provided by Maine's Department of Health and Human Services, at http://www.maine.gov/dhhs/oads/aging/resource/alzheimer-care.html
- How do I get Medicare prescription drug coverage?
Visit the resource page provided by Maine's Department of Health and Human Services
- How do I find current Flu information?
Information for the public about Flu is online at http://www.maineflu.gov . For information about the current Flu season and how to obtain a vaccination, visit the Maine CDC website at http://www.maine.gov/dhhs/boh/
- How do I find out more about West Nile Virus and Eastern Equine Encephalitis?
Visit the Maine CDC Arbovirus Resource Center for up-to-date information about West Nile Virus, Eastern Equine Encephalitis and other arboviruses.
- How do I find health & human services information?
Dial 2-1-1 on your telephone or visit http://www.211maine.org/ to use Maine's health and human services directory. You can find help with community services such as counseling, substance abuse, health care, crisis intervention, disability services, children's services, volunteer opportunities, and more. You may also want to visit the Maine Department of Health & Human Services website.
- How do I set up flag notifications?
To receive flag notifications, you can sign up to receive email or SMS notifications directly to you or you can sign up for RSS feeds which will place a bookmark on your web browser. Find out more about signing up for email notifications, or get more information about RSS feeds.
- How do I file for unemployment benefits?
If you cannot get through to the claims centers using the telephone, it is because all claims rep are tied up with other callers and the queues of people waiting to get through are filled to maximum capacity. Lines are busiest on Mondays and Tuesdays and less busy later in the week. However, there are other ways to file a claim.
You can file by over the internet by going to www.file4ui.com and completing the claim online. This application is available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.
Initial claims for the federal Emergency Unemployment Compensation (EUC) program must be filed by completing a paper application that can be downloaded from the Maine Department of Labor website at www.file4ui.com and mailed to the address shown on the form. We also mail these applications to individuals approximately 2 weeks prior to exhausting their regular unemployment benefits.
To file continued or weekly claims (including EUC weekly claims), a person can do so by calling 1-888-457-8884 and using the automated Teleclaim system. If experiencing difficulty getting through to this number during normal business hours, call back after 5:00 pm or before 8:00 am, or on the weekends. The automated Teleclaim system is available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. Weekly claims can be filed on or after 12:01 am Sunday for the week just completed. The automated Teleclaim application is available in English, French and Spanish.
Weekly claims (including EUC weekly claims) can also be filed online by going to www.file4ui.com 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.
- How do I I-File my Maine Residents Property Tax Rent Refund Application?
I-file makes filing your Maine Residents Property Tax and Rent Refund Application easy and convenient. It is a simple, error-free way to apply, eliminating the use of paper forms. Simply go to http://www.maine.gov/revenue/netfile/TNRIfile.htm and click on “I-file your 2009 Tax and Rent Refund Application” link in the center of the page.