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New York State Driver's License

New York State Driver's License

Old Jul 16th 2013, 3:14 am
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Default New York State Driver's License

Hi,

I've tried googling and searching these forums, but haven't really found the answer to my questions.

Background:

- I have a Green Card which I got at the beginning of this year. Prior to that I was on H1 visas, first arriving in NYC in 2007.

- I have always lived at the same address since I first moved here in NYC.

- I don't own a car (nor do I ever want to - I live in Manhattan)

- I don't have a New York driver's license

- I have an in date UK driver's license with the address of a property that I still own in the UK. (it's one of the photoID ones).

- I'm over 35

- I hire a rental car for roughly one week a year to drive to Canada to see family and have done this every year since coming. I always get full insurance because I'm a complete sucker (though I am up on this overall because once the rental car got bumped when parked outside my apartment and the insurance fully covered it).


My Question(s):

Should I really be getting a New York driver's license?

Does my driver's license status change now that I have a Green Card?

Is my UK driver's license still valid? (It is in the sense that the rental company still rents to me).

I noted online that the NY driver's test requires me to bring my own insured car to the driver's test. How does that work if I don't own a car? I don't really know anyone well enough that has a car in NYC to lend me.


Thanks in advance
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Old Jul 16th 2013, 3:37 am
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Default Re: New York State Driver's License

I found this webpage which has most of my answers

http://www.dmv.ny.gov/license.htm#dr...omothernations


I still have no idea of what car I'm going to use to take the test. Has anyone gone through this?
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Old Jul 16th 2013, 4:13 am
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Default Re: New York State Driver's License

Originally Posted by oriole View Post
Should I really be getting a New York driver's license?
Yes, if you are going to be driving in the USA. You permanently live in the USA now, and NY is your home.

Does my driver's license status change now that I have a Green Card?
What driver's license status? You said you don't have one.

Is my UK driver's license still valid? (It is in the sense that the rental company still rents to me).
The rental company probably doesn't realize you're a US PR. IMO you should have gotten a NY license long ago, even when you were on your H1B. Your UK license is still valid, meaning it's not expired or anything, but you weren't really supposed to be driving on it more than like 30 days after you arrived in the USA. You're supposed to get a State DL.

Rene
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Old Jul 16th 2013, 4:26 am
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Default Re: New York State Driver's License

Thanks. I realize I need to get a NY driver's license. Just a pain as I only drive perhaps 2 days a year for a total of 16 hours (8 hours to Canada on one day, 8 hours back on another day).

Living in Manhattan, I have absolutely no need or desire to drive / own a car on a regular basis. It turns out that I can't even take a road test in Manhattan, I have to go elsewhere.

I'm just going to fly to Canada instead.

Thanks

Last edited by oriole; Jul 16th 2013 at 4:30 am.
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Old Jul 16th 2013, 4:38 am
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Default Re: New York State Driver's License

Drivers licences seem to be a grey area for immigrants. The issue of whether the UK licence remains valid even if not expired is debated. The different States in US seem to have different rules, which seem only to apply to car owners.(You do not have to get a State licence within x days of residency, if you don't have a car, or a licence from another State). Rental companies and insurance companies have their own rules too. I don't know / have not seen any definitive answers.

Your experience of renting on your UK licence and having a successful insurance claim is encouraging, but might be a fluke
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Old Jul 16th 2013, 5:12 am
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Default Re: New York State Driver's License

Originally Posted by Noorah101 View Post
IMO you should have gotten a NY license long ago, even when you were on your H1B.
Plus, those years would have counted toward lowering an insurance premium, even if it was only 'two days a year'.
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Old Jul 16th 2013, 11:34 am
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Default Re: New York State Driver's License

We are in the process of obtaining a NJ driving licence. We also do not have a car as we are in Jersey City and do not need one at the moment. With regards to the driving test, some on here have done it in a hire car using their UK licence to hire said car (I think there is a thread about it). You would need to check with the MVC though. The other option is to find a local driving school and book your test through them. They then supply the car and the additional licenced driver that will find you will need on the day (in case you fail the test ).
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Old Jul 16th 2013, 12:44 pm
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Default Re: New York State Driver's License

Originally Posted by oriole View Post
I found this webpage which has most of my answers

http://www.dmv.ny.gov/license.htm#dr...omothernations


I still have no idea of what car I'm going to use to take the test. Has anyone gone through this?
Jeez.. I just looked at that page and it appears to have been written or compiled by a complete idiot, or maybe an unpaid summer intern.
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Old Jul 16th 2013, 1:08 pm
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Default Re: New York State Driver's License

Originally Posted by robin1234 View Post
Jeez.. I just looked at that page and it appears to have been written or compiled by a complete idiot, or maybe an unpaid summer intern.
Haha. I thought it looked a little sketchy.

How come you have to take a car to your test in NY? Out of curiosity, is it like that in most states?
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Old Jul 16th 2013, 1:25 pm
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Default Re: New York State Driver's License

Originally Posted by PennyA View Post
Haha. I thought it looked a little sketchy.

How come you have to take a car to your test in NY? Out of curiosity, is it like that in most states?
Surely you always have to take a car to a driving test. In England you do, for instance. The state isn't going to provide one for you, in any case the candidate would want to be driving a car they were familiar with..
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Old Jul 16th 2013, 1:45 pm
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Default Re: New York State Driver's License

Originally Posted by oriole View Post
Thanks. I realize I need to get a NY driver's license. Just a pain as I only drive perhaps 2 days a year for a total of 16 hours (8 hours to Canada on one day, 8 hours back on another day).

Living in Manhattan, I have absolutely no need or desire to drive / own a car on a regular basis. It turns out that I can't even take a road test in Manhattan, I have to go elsewhere.

I'm just going to fly to Canada instead.

Thanks
I took my US road test in NY in a rented SUV. I lived in Westchester County at the time, but ended up driving to Herkimer to get a "next week" road test appointment.

I guess that using a rented vehicle for a road test is probably contrary to the rental agreement, but I already held a full license when I rented the SUV, (it was just that it was a British licence! ) so it wasn't like some spotty kid using a rental car to take a road test (I hear that most rental companies won't hire to people younger than 25 anyway). .... The examiner didn't seem to notice it was a rental vehicle, or didn't care; he certainly didn't say anything about it.
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Old Jul 16th 2013, 3:38 pm
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Default Re: New York State Driver's License

UK license isn't really valid as you aren't resident in the UK.

Check to see if you can do the US test on a rental, some states allow it, others don't, if they don't, use a driving school car for a couple hours and take the test in that.
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Old Jul 16th 2013, 3:40 pm
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Default Re: New York State Driver's License

Originally Posted by Bob View Post
UK license isn't really valid as you aren't resident in the UK.

Check to see if you can do the US test on a rental, some states allow it, others don't, if they don't, use a driving school car for a couple hours and take the test in that.
My daughter had to use a driving school car...as the car was required to have a side handbrake...and our cars only had footbrakes. As you said we couldn't use a rental car because she didn't have a full DL.
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Old Jul 16th 2013, 3:51 pm
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Default Re: New York State Driver's License

I got my NY driving license earlier this year as it's great to have some US ID for booze rather than carrying round an expensive to replace green card or passport. I had a full GB license, but after 30 days of being resident in NY you have to get a new one (out of state holders have to exchange too). It's all a bit of a gray area, but we rent cars often, and I wouldn't want to invalidate my insurance.

It's a painful process in NY with five steps.

1. Read most of the driving manual (or download a free NY theory test app) as you have to sit a 20 question practice exam when you apply for your license.
2. Go to a DMV for 3-4 hours... In this time you will fill in a form, take a ticket, wait, get a photo, wait, take a theory test, wait for result, if successful, get a new ticket, wait, pay $80 or so. Leave.
3. Once you receive your license you can book your mandatory 5 hour pre-licensing course - Tedious, and only enlightening aspect was knowing you can have 4 beers and still drive legally...
4. With the certificate from the course you can book your test. This will be in 1-2 months and nowhere in Manhattan (I went to Astoria).
5. My wife hired a car from Hertz and we drove to Astoria. Wait in line to take test. Drive around the block, indicating, looking and giving-way (possibly for the last time if you drive in the city!!), do a parallel park (ugh!). Hopefully pass.

I think it's worth having a NY driving license as it seems to have become the defacto ID for anything from getting into a building to the aforementioned buying of booze.

Last edited by jaffy23; Jul 16th 2013 at 3:53 pm. Reason: forgot it was called "pre-licensing"
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Old Jul 16th 2013, 5:34 pm
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Default Re: New York State Driver's License

Originally Posted by Bob View Post
UK license isn't really valid as you aren't resident in the UK. .....
It for 30 days, in most states, I hear. The problem is that it is often difficult to a get a road test within the 30 (or whatever) day period.
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