How to File a Complaint Against the DMV

By Eric Cedric

Service at the Department of Motor Vehicles is a long standing staple of stand-up comedians and sitcoms. However, real life is often not as funny as the fictional word. If you have issues or a complaint from an experience at your DMV, you have recourse methods. File a complaint to your state's DMV or through an ombudsman for your DMV office. Remember to stay cool and remain factual. Facts and documentation lead to positive outcomes.

Request a copy of any formal complaint forms from your state's DMV. If you are unsure if your state has a form, call your local branch, or go to your state's online DMV website.

Fill the complaint form out. If your state does not have a formal complaint form, construct a letter detailing the sequence of events and the facts surrounding your issue. Provide your name, the date and time of the issue, the name of the agent who assisted you and any relevant facts to the complaint. Don't make judgments or insult the agent you are complaining about. Stay calm and report "just the facts." Provide possible solutions or what you would ideally like to see as a result of the complaint.

Provide your return address, contact phone number and email address in the letter (the forms have this information in the sections to fill out.)

Mail or hand deliver the complaint to the DMV branch office or to the state ombudsman.

About the Author

A former Alaskan of 20 years, Eric Cedric now resides in California. He's published in "Outside" and "Backpacker" and has written a book on life in small-town Alaska, "North by Southeast." Cedric was a professional mountain guide and backcountry expedition leader for 18 years. He worked in Russia, Iceland, Greece, Turkey and Belize. Cedric attended Syracuse University and is a private pilot.