President Joe Biden and Vice-president Kamala Harris have taken their formal oaths at the US Capitol.
Joe Biden has been sworn in as the 46th US president, ending one of the most dramatic political transitions in American history.
"Democracy has prevailed," he said after taking the oath of office from Chief Justice John Roberts.
Outgoing President Donald Trump, who has not formally conceded to Mr Biden, is not attending the ceremony.
The new president has announced a raft of executive orders aimed at reversing Mr Trump's key policies.
Vice-President-elect Harris was sworn in ahead of Mr Biden - becoming the first woman and the first black and Asian-American person elevated to serve in a role a heartbeat from the presidency.
The inauguration is taking place at the US Capitol. There is extra-tight security after the building was stormed by violent pro-Trump protesters in a deadly riot on 6 January.
Some 25,000 National Guards are protecting the inauguration ceremony, which is missing the traditional hundreds of thousands of spectators because of the coronavirus pandemic.
Mr Trump left the White House for the last time as president shortly after 08:00 (13:00 GMT). He boarded a helicopter, flew to the nearby Andrews Air Force base, and has now arrived in Florida.
He is the first president not to attend his successor's inauguration since 1869.