DMV complies with new guidelines
The beginning of 2012 will see stricter regulations at the local Division of Motor Vehicle offices. According to West Virginia DMV spokesperson Natalie Harvey, the state’s offices are now fully compliant with federal regulations put in place as a result of Sept. 11.
Those needing to secure a West Virginia driver’s license will need to bring several items of identification with them when visiting the DMV offices. For those seeking a new West Virginia license, one of three items is needed: an original or certified copy of a United States-issued birth certificate, a valid unexpired U.S. passport or unexpired Department of Homeland Security (DHS) documents for those who are foreign born. The note should be made that a hospital-issued birth certificate is not an acceptable means of identification.
In addition to one of the above items, one must also present an original social security card, a wage and tax statement (W-2) or payroll stub with the applicant’s employer name and employer ID number as well as the applicant’s name and social security number or an SSA/1099 Form.
Two proofs of West Virginia residency are also required. Among acceptable forms of proof are West Virginia utility bills that contain the applicant’s name and physical address (no post office boxes are acceptable); tax records with a West Virginia physical address; a voter registration card; proof of West Virginia public assistance; homeowner insurance documents or a valid West Virginia motor vehicle registration card. Additional forms of acceptable identification can be found at www.transportationwv. gov.
These types of identification are not only required for those seeking a new West Virginia driver’s license but for those needing to renew a driver’s license.
Harvey explained that the requirements are part of added security measures to help prevent individuals from obtaining false identification. She said that an additional change for those seeking new licenses or renewals is the need to provide documentation of any name change. For a married woman, especially, who use their birth certificate as one of the initial forms of identification, that means that a certified copy of a marriage license will also be required if she has taken her husband’s last name. This requirement applies to all licenses issued beginning Jan. 3, 2012. Even if an individual has a current license but needs to renew, those forms of identification are required.
Harvey explained that the documentation will be scanned by the DMV and will become part of their database. She was not sure, however, if that meant the next time a renewal was needed that the information would not need to be presented again.
“We are fully compliant as much as we can be right now,” Harvey said. “As we get new information, we will share it with the public.”
Another new piece of information she was able to share was that individuals obtaining a West Virginia driver’s license or state-issued identification card can receive one of two types: one for federal use and one for non-federal use. Needed forms of identification for the two are the same; however, the non-federal ID can be immediately issued at the DMV office while the federal-use ID must be ordered and sent via UPS.
Harvey said that the federal-use ID will allegedly allow individuals to access federal buildings and travel through airport security more easily than those without the federal-use designation. She indicated that there is no difference in required identification documentation and there is no additional fee to obtain the federal-use ID. One must simply wait to receive it. While waiting, the individual is issued a temporary identification by the local DMV office.
The use of a non-federal identification may mean additional security checkpoints or more time spent traveling through security, Harvey said. She indicated that she is not aware of what other federal guidelines may be created but that the state DMV will comply with whatever mandates are issued to them and will seek to notify the public of those mandates in a timely and efficient manner.