PDA

View Full Version : Does your state give out licenses/ID's on the same day you apply?


Omega Glory
11-16-2004, 11:58 PM
Here in this thread (http://boards.straightdope.com/sdmb/showthread.php?t=286950) jgroub talks about his wife needing some form of identification for a fast approaching trip. Lots of people posted variations of "duh, just go to the DMV and renew the license or get a non-drivers identification card before you go."

So apparently in some other states people don't have to wait the two to six weeks for the photo ID to come in the mail the way we New Yorkers do. In NY, when you go to the DMV, they give you a little paper card with all of your information on it, and mail the real deal to you from Albany (the capital). Is NY the only state that does it the inconvenient way?

TellMeI'mNotCrazy
11-17-2004, 12:15 AM
Connecticut here. I get my license during the same visit.

tomndebb
11-17-2004, 12:20 AM
Gee, I thought Ohio was the leader in backward bureaucracy, but immediate photo ID was here before 1980 (when the Ohio BMV made me turn in my Michigan license and immediately gave me a new Ohio license). (Michigan had been issuing "immediate" licenses for at least fifteen years before that.)

It's hard to believe that any state is still mailing licenses.

Zsofia
11-17-2004, 12:23 AM
Well, I posted in the other thread, but in South Carolina you walk in with your old one and walk out with a new one. You might miss the rise and fall of an empire or two in between, but they make the licenses on site.

flickster
11-17-2004, 12:44 AM
Illinois licenses made on-site. If it's your first one, you'll need additional ID. If renewing your old license - nothing additional required. Choose your time wisely and hope the line is not too long. Staff moves at same pace whether there are 100 ppl or 1 person in line. Don't forget to take a number.....
If you have a clean driving record you can renew on-line and they mail a sticker to attach to your existing license extending the expiration date.

Duckster
11-17-2004, 01:07 AM
Washington State licenses are only issued from one office in Olympia. When I first obtained my license (I received a paper temp license until my permanent license came in the mail), I asked why, since other states issue on the spot. I was told by DMV that all licenses are issued from a single office in the state to reduce the chance of false licenses and identity theft.

A number of years ago when Wisconsin first went to the computer-generated licensing, the laws did not keep pace with the technology. I renewed my license with no problem at the DMV, they made the license for me on the spot, but could only provide me with a paper temp license. Why? Well the legislature passed the law allowing for the creation of the new licenses, but not the distribution of the new licenses. A different (old) law still required all licenses to be mailed out. So as they gave me my paper temp license, they showed me my new fangled computer generated license, put it in an envelope (along with the required paper letter) and said it would be mailed out. Would I get it the next day, I asked? Not a chance because they also had to bulk post all licenses from a central location! I did not receive my renewed license for a week!

Fern Forest
11-17-2004, 01:08 AM
Hawaii's same day. I go to a satellite city hall too so it's quick.

maleinblack
11-17-2004, 01:10 AM
I had applied for ID in Minnesota and was shocked/surprised to know that it would not be issued on the spot! Took 3 weeks for it to arrive by snail mail. Doesnt make much sense because they made me carry all my identification documents in original (it was my first time) and even took the picture immedietly.

Nightwatch Trailer
11-17-2004, 01:15 AM
I got my Mississippi license the same day I took my driving test.

Q.E.D.
11-17-2004, 01:20 AM
Virginia: In with papers, out with photo ID.

LVgeogeek
11-17-2004, 01:39 AM
In Nevada you get your ID on the same visit. DMV takes forever here, but same day ID service.

Boyo Jim
11-17-2004, 02:40 AM
Wisconsin -- in and out with your ID in hand. Washington, DC is the same.

Sharky
11-17-2004, 03:12 AM
Florida - on the spot. Never have had to wait in line, either.

Boyo Jim
11-17-2004, 03:48 AM
...Never have had to wait in line, either.

Us neither. The waiting room has plenty of seating. :p

Graycat
11-17-2004, 07:43 AM
Tennessee. You get your license made on the spot and carry it with you. You may be there for several hours, but it's all done in the one visit. They use the little camera attached to the PC setup for your picture, so you end up looking like an escapee from the institute for the criminally insane. If the license hasn't lapsed, you can renew by mail or online.

Athena
11-17-2004, 09:08 AM
Gee, I thought Ohio was the leader in backward bureaucracy, but immediate photo ID was here before 1980 (when the Ohio BMV made me turn in my Michigan license and immediately gave me a new Ohio license). (Michigan had been issuing "immediate" licenses for at least fifteen years before that.)

It's hard to believe that any state is still mailing licenses.

Dude, which Michigan are you talking about? I got my MI license 2 years ago, and they gave me a paper license and mailed out the "real" license a couple weeks later.

Servo
11-17-2004, 09:35 AM
I'm wondering if this has anything to do with the type of cards used for the license. In New York it's a plastic card that's the same thickness as a credit card, but it's extremely flexible. It also has watermarks covering the front that appear to be applied after your photo and information has been printed onto the card. I could imagine that the equipment that produces these cards is too expensive or hard to maintain to have one in every DMV office.

I haven't seen many other states' licenses so I could be way off base with this, but what are you licenses like? Are they laminated cards, more like a hard plastic credit card, or something completely different?

Mehitabel
11-17-2004, 10:01 AM
I have to wait 4-6 weeks for a *replacement* license to be mailed to me. Got my wallet taken on Oct. 29th. :mad: :(

FatBaldGuy
11-17-2004, 10:05 AM
In Utah up until a few years ago you could walk in and get your license the same day. Now they have changed the procedure so that you get a paper image of the license with your photo, but the actual card is mailed in about 3 weeks. Seems like a step backwards

Munch
11-17-2004, 10:08 AM
Both Indiana and Kansas are same day.

SmackFu
11-17-2004, 10:48 AM
I haven't seen many other states' licenses so I could be way off base with this, but what are you licenses like? Are they laminated cards, more like a hard plastic credit card, or something completely different?Connecticut's most recent revision is pretty sophisticated. Credit card style with both sides full custom printed. Holograms in the lamination too. Takes about 15 minutes to get one in the mall kiosk.

pasunejen
11-17-2004, 01:17 PM
Maryland is on the spot. And it can be really quick, too, if you go to an express office during off-hours. This doesn't work the first time you apply for an ID, but after that you don't have to deal with the ugliness that is one of the central offices. I think the last time I got a new license I was in and out in ten minutes.

Unfortunately I had to trade the nice old-style license for one of the new ones with the demonic clip-art crab in the corner. :(

pasunejen
11-17-2004, 01:19 PM
I haven't seen many other states' licenses so I could be way off base with this, but what are you licenses like? Are they laminated cards, more like a hard plastic credit card, or something completely different?

Maryland used to have laminated cards; now the licenses are hard plastic. IDs were/are handed out on the spot in either case, so that's probably not the issue.

Snickers
11-17-2004, 01:31 PM
I had applied for ID in Minnesota and was shocked/surprised to know that it would not be issued on the spot! Took 3 weeks for it to arrive by snail mail. Doesnt make much sense because they made me carry all my identification documents in original (it was my first time) and even took the picture immedietly.

It's even worse when you move to MN from WI, where they make licenses on the spot. I always thought the two states were pretty comparable, so I was pretty surprised to learn how backwards MN is. That waiting period (and chintzy "paper license" you're supposed to use) sucks.

Snickers
11-17-2004, 01:33 PM
And to add insult to injury, the MN license is pretty ugly and isn't as durable as the WI credit-card style ones. It's the same size, but made of flimsier plastic. I was warned not to store it in my back pocket because it could break that way.

C'mon, MN --> get with the times! You're a good state, catch up.

hocow
11-17-2004, 01:38 PM
Pennsylvania here and same day service. We also have the credit card like style.

MLS
11-17-2004, 07:02 PM
For years -- decades, even -- it's been normal to get the license the same day here in NJ, even with photos. Now you get a nifty digital "impossible to photocopy, difficult to forge" one. When I renewed mine, I was in & out of the office in about a half hour, tops. Including the newly-strengthened security I.D. procedures.

lawoot
11-17-2004, 07:38 PM
Washington State licenses are only issued from one office in Olympia. When I first obtained my license (I received a paper temp license until my permanent license came in the mail), I asked why, since other states issue on the spot. I was told by DMV that all licenses are issued from a single office in the state to reduce the chance of false licenses and identity theft.

When I first moved to Washington in 1993, it was an instant ID state. When I went in to replace a lost license last year at about this time, it was "Here's your paper ID, the other will be mailed to you." This changed sometime between 1999 and last year, as in 1999 (when I got the now-lost license) it was still instant ID.

Mr. Blue Sky
11-17-2004, 07:48 PM
Georgia has instant licenses, too. You can even renew on the 'net if you want to keep your old picture.

Mr. Blue Sky
11-17-2004, 07:50 PM
Georgia has instant licenses, too. You can even renew on the 'net if you want to keep your old picture.

Addendum: after renewing online (or by mail), the next time you renew, you to go in person.

dalej42
11-17-2004, 07:57 PM
Ohio- (2000)-on the spot
Florida(1998-2000)- on the spot
California (at least in 1998)- wait FOREVER (6 weeks in the mail)

Can someone tell me about Texas? One month until moving day and I'll need to get a license ASAP as my Ohio one expires in January.

NinjaChick
11-17-2004, 08:30 PM
For years -- decades, even -- it's been normal to get the license the same day here in NJ, even with photos. Now you get a nifty digital "impossible to photocopy, difficult to forge" one. When I renewed mine, I was in & out of the office in about a half hour, tops. Including the newly-strengthened security I.D. procedures.
Ah, but that new ID procedure can be a huge, huge pain for first-time licensees, if they're young. When I got mine, my mom and I gathered up about ten different things - school ID, passport, letter from school to them, transcript, etc. If you're seventeen and don't have a passport and no utility bills of your own, it can cause problems.

MLS
11-17-2004, 08:42 PM
Ah, but that new ID procedure can be a huge, huge pain for first-time licensees, if they're young. When I got mine, my mom and I gathered up about ten different things - school ID, passport, letter from school to them, transcript, etc. If you're seventeen and don't have a passport and no utility bills of your own, it can cause problems.

True. Actually I had a bit of a difficulty, because my passport and other official stuff had my middle name on it, whereas my old D/L did not. So I had to go get my birth certificate, which of course had my birth name on it, so I also had to bring my marriage license. Just so that they could add a middle initial.

The other weird thing (bit of a hijack) was that last time I got my passport renewed, they asked for my driver's license as I.D., but my d/l at the time did not have a photo. Fortunately I also had a photo I.D. from work. But I thought it strange that the passport office asked for a driver's license, and the motor vehicle place took the passport that had been obtained with the previous driver's license. Sort of recursive.

Hostile Dialect
11-17-2004, 10:13 PM
In Arizona you walk in with the old one and walk out with the new one. Not sure if it's different if you're getting your first ID, but it probably isn't.

Q.E.D.
11-18-2004, 12:10 AM
I'm wondering if this has anything to do with the type of cards used for the license. In New York it's a plastic card that's the same thickness as a credit card, but it's extremely flexible. It also has watermarks covering the front that appear to be applied after your photo and information has been printed onto the card. I could imagine that the equipment that produces these cards is too expensive or hard to maintain to have one in every DMV office.
My VA identification is similar. It's color laser-printed on PVC card stock which is preprinted with a microprinted "border" that reads Commonwealth of Virginia. It is overlaid with a clear lamination tile-printed in metallic gold with the state outline and the word Virginia. The equipment isn't that sophisticated. Color PVC-card laser printers are even available to consumers with a few thousand bucks to spend. The hard parts (the printed lamination and the microprinted border) are done off-site somewhere, probably by contract.

GrizzRich
11-18-2004, 02:35 AM
/slight hijack/

In Virginia, they used to have a two-part driver's license.
Part "B" was the photo-ID part.
Part "A" was an addendum that fit into a pocket on the back of the license. This part had any restrictions, etc.

As a youthful driver (one could one's license at 15years, 8months of age) one went to the DMV and tested and, if you passed the written and driving exams, you got part "B" of your license that day.

You also received a schedule for a court hearing a few weeks off.

In court, you sat and watched your peers who had committed driving violations go before the judge and plead their case. Then watch in horror as more than half of them got their driving privileges revoked until they were 18 or 21 or, worse yet, handcuffed and trotted off to jail.
To make matters worse, the one judge that heard such cases was a hard-nosed fellow. You had to be dressed properly (jacket and tie for young men; dress or skirt for young ladies); males had to be shaven and with a proper haircut (military length or close to it). This was in 1976. Few young men in my hometown of newly-achieved driving age had long hair anymore.

Additionally, my dad was a friend of the judge.

That didn't mean that I would get special treatment. That only meant that the judge knew my dad would beat my hiney if I had to go to court for a violation.

/here endeth the slight hijack/

Lsura
11-18-2004, 06:13 AM
Georgia has instant licenses, too. You can even renew on the 'net if you want to keep your old picture.


Did they change this? When I moved to Georgia in November 1999, I switched over my license and was given a temporary one (with my photo on it that looked just like the real one - plastic and all), with my real license mailed to me two or three weeks later.


Of the other states I've had licenses - TN, MS and OH, all give the license the same day. Although Ohio with their "first you go here to take the test, then you have to go to this other place to get your actual license" drove me bananas.

dalej42
11-18-2004, 06:17 AM
Of the other states I've had licenses - TN, MS and OH, all give the license the same day. Although Ohio with their "first you go here to take the test, then you have to go to this other place to get your actual license" drove me bananas.

Ohio has changed this. They now have some BMV stations where you can take the test and receive the license in the same building. I got mine at the station on East Broad st.

Lsura
11-18-2004, 06:37 AM
Ohio has changed this. They now have some BMV stations where you can take the test and receive the license in the same building. I got mine at the station on East Broad st.

Not in the Youngstown area - it's still multiple stops here.

gfloyd
11-18-2004, 01:04 PM
In MA, about two years ago, I walked in with my paper learners permit and walked out with an idenitical, if less beat up, paper licence. My came in the mail awhile later. And in the infinite brilliance of this state, I have a under 21 licence, it's vertical, not horizontal. To make it easier to get carded. One problem. It expirers on my 22nd birthday. Alas, I hope to have it replaced with a Cali one in six or so months.

gigi
11-18-2004, 02:05 PM
New Hampshire and Vermont are both same-visit service.

whiterabbit
11-18-2004, 02:31 PM
Georgia and Louisiana both do licenses on the spot. California didn't when I got my license there in '94, and I can't imagine that they've changed that, because on-the-spot licenses make actual sense.

Ravenman
11-18-2004, 02:59 PM
DC: same day.
California: in the mail.

FilmGeek
11-18-2004, 03:23 PM
Both Indiana and Kansas are same day.

Some DMVs in Kansas do same day, but now that they've switched to the new design some places send them to a centralized location so all licenses look the same. Some still print them in shop, though, so I'm not sure how this centralization is supposed to work.

The new design is weird. If you're under 21, all the info is vertical, over 21, horizontal like the old ones.

Abbie Carmichael
11-18-2004, 06:04 PM
One-stop shopping here in West Virginia and also in Kentucky, where I grew up.

ouryL
11-20-2004, 02:41 AM
yes

dalej42
11-21-2004, 05:15 PM
Quick bump. Anyone know if Texas is a same day state?

I'll be living there four weeks from today!

Jammer
11-21-2004, 06:11 PM
North Carolina is one-stop shopping as well. Thanks for reminding me, I need to renew within the next several weeks.

Jammer