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The two states where undocumented immigrants can apply for driver's licenses in 2021 | The State

The two states where undocumented immigrants can apply for driver's licenses in 2021

Undocumented persons may be licensed in Oregon and Virginia.

Giorgio Trovato / Unsplash

This first day of 2021, the laws that allow undocumented immigrants residing in the states of Oregon and Virginia to obtain vehicle driver licenses came into force.

Now that it is no longer necessary to prove U.S. citizenship or legal residence in the U.S., to obtain a driver’s license in Oregon so it is necessary to present in the Department of Transportation (DMV) proof of identity and date of birth and certify Oregon residency.

The applicant must also demonstrate the payment of the corresponding fees and have passed the driving test, with the possibility of submitting a written declaration that they do not have a social security number assigned if they do not have one.

Unlike other driver’s licenses, licenses for citizens without legal immigration status will not be eligible for automatic voter registration.

Licensing in Virginia

In Virginia, Applicants will need to show proof of identity to the state DMV, two proofs of residency, documentation from the previous year’s tax return, or having been claimed as a dependent on a tax return in this state, plus a vision test. The license will have to be renewed every two years.

Licenses issued in both states will not comply with the federal Real ID personal identification standard, which allows, among other things, to board airplanes.

The defenders of both states agree on the importance that the undocumented have the right to be able to take their children to school and to be able to lead a normal life, without having the pressure of not having a driver’s license, thus improving road safety.

These laws protect the undocumented who apply for driver’s licenses from immigration agencies, to which no information will be provided.

The bad news came this week from the state of New Jersey, which passed the same legislation in December 2019 with a view to starting the process in January 2021, but has indefinitely suspended the issuance of driver’s licenses for undocumented immigrants.

The alleged reason is due to the lack of a plan and computer resources capable of implementing the standard due to the coronavirus pandemic, according to sources from the CNew Jersey Motor and Vehicle Omission (NJMVC).


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