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Old May 6, 08, 11:52 am   #1
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My "Fake" Drivers License is a Done Deal

I can't find the original ID thread where I stated my intention to do this, so pardon the new topic.

After a recent altercation with SEA TSA over my very old FL drivers license, the new 'ID regulations' and the fact my FL license has my SSN on it (making me a sitting duck for ID theft if I ever lost it), I decided to get a new drivers license in Hawai'i where they don't really care what your real address is. My goal with this project was securing a new license which was both legal for driving and met the TSA's silly new regulations for acceptable ID, while at the same time, not show my actual legal home address or have an address on file which is traceable back to where I really live. In the case of the TSA 'writing down' the info off my DL, or losing the license, I would be protected from ID theft or other TSA miscreant behavior, not to mention the satisfaction of 'sticking it to The Man' as far as this ID nonsense goes.

I rented a mailbox in Honolulu for my 'Hawai'i residence', visited the DMW office on Dillingham after arriving in Honolulu, and filled out the forms to transfer the Florida DL. The experience, save for the harder-than-expected written test was a pleasant breeze. Total time was under 1 hour, which was less time than it would have taken me to get *into* any Florida DMV office, let alone finish the process. Everyone at the DMV office was so nice, I almost fainted from shock - smiles, patience, laughter - I wasn't sure if it was really the DMV.

Total cost was $20 including the test, and the license paid for itself after saving $24 with my new Kama'aina discount at the Bishop Museum. I also noticed I was treated differently everywhere from my hotel, to restaurants, even to the ABC store if they saw the Hawaiian license - kind of a 'you're one of us and we'll treat you better' feeling.

Pro - I have a TSA compliant ID, they have no idea where I really live (so much for security, eh?), and I'm better insulated from ID theft since my name will not officially match with the DL address as far as the credit bureaus go.

Con - One of my worst photos, ever!
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Old May 6, 08, 12:05 pm   #2
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Hmm... this makes me wonder.. are there other countries offer legal ID to US citizens?
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Old May 6, 08, 12:11 pm   #3
  
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Don't you need a valid Florida licenses to register a car and have insurance?

If you own a car in FL what are you doing about that?

Or will you get a new out of state FL license using your HI one?
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Old May 6, 08, 12:14 pm   #4
  
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Thanks for posting, this is interesting info. I assume the $20.00 total doesn't include the post office box. Do you plan to keep the PO box, or did you just do a one month rental on it?
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Old May 6, 08, 12:21 pm   #5
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Hmm... this makes me wonder.. are there other countries offer legal ID to US citizens?
It's called "dual citizenship".
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Old May 6, 08, 12:22 pm   #6
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It's called "dual citizenship".
Something short of that, I mean.
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Old May 6, 08, 12:31 pm   #7
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Let me answer both of the above posts together:

1) no, you don't need a FL drivers license to register a car in Florida or get insurance - many folks, especially snow birds, have cars both in FL and other states. The car registration is independent from the license. There are no 'out of state' licenses in FL - they want proof of residency and address. Also, they have a habit of selling private information to third-party marketers and had the computer systems hosting the DL data and photos broken into by hackers. I have other proof of FL residency for things like voter registration, etc.

2) I plan on keeping the mailbox - yes, the cost should be added, and it's $109 per year, but I can earn that back easily with one Kama'aina hotel rate stay. If I canceled the mailbox, then the address on file with the DMV would be totally invalid and that could be a problem. It's not my intention to deceive the HI DMV, just keep my real home address out of the prying eyes of the TSA, other government agencies and potential identity thieves.

I am only joking about the 'fake' part of the drivers license - it is a real license, perfectly legal and in full compliance with posted state regulations. In fact, when I first called to inquire, the DMV person (an actual real, live person answers the phones!) said they issue drivers licenses to non-state residents all the time, and can put any mailing address you want on the card, even an address in another state.
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Old May 6, 08, 12:34 pm   #8
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Something short of that, I mean.
I know, I know.

I'm itching for an APEC BTC, so the topic of dual citizenship has been on my mind lately.
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Old May 6, 08, 12:40 pm   #9
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Let me answer both of the above posts together:

1) no, you don't need a FL drivers license to register a car in Florida or get insurance - many folks, especially snow birds, have cars both in FL and other states. The car registration is independent from the license. There are no 'out of state' licenses in FL - they want proof of residency and address. Also, they have a habit of selling private information to third-party marketers and had the computer systems hosting the DL data and photos broken into by hackers. I have other proof of FL residency for things like voter registration, etc.

2) I plan on keeping the mailbox - yes, the cost should be added, and it's $109 per year, but I can earn that back easily with one Kama'aina hotel rate stay. If I canceled the mailbox, then the address on file with the DMV would be totally invalid and that could be a problem. It's not my intention to deceive the HI DMV, just keep my real home address out of the prying eyes of the TSA, other government agencies and potential identity thieves.

I am only joking about the 'fake' part of the drivers license - it is a real license, perfectly legal and in full compliance with posted state regulations. In fact, when I first called to inquire, the DMV person (an actual real, live person answers the phones!) said they issue drivers licenses to non-state residents all the time, and can put any mailing address you want on the card, even an address in another state.
I can imagine doing this for no other reason than to have a second, smaller ID card other than my passport in case I ever lose my Florida DL.

Is there anything special about Hawaii? Are they just a non Real-ID state or something?
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Old May 6, 08, 12:44 pm   #10
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That's a great idea, if only for the discounts. But I don't think we could do that in CA. You supposedly must get a CA license within ten days of arrival which I did. However, it was a long time before I registered my car here (WI kept renewing it by mail) and Farmers was willing to issue insurance then on an out of state vehicle. I will look into this, as I have un-registered to vote and the property tax exemption for being a state resident is teensy. However, I do take dirt-cheap community college classes at resident rates.

Did you surrender your Florida DL? You must do that to obtain a CA license.
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Old May 6, 08, 12:52 pm   #11
  
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That's a great idea, if only for the discounts. But I don't think we could do that in CA. You supposedly must get a CA license within ten days of arrival which I did. However, it was a long time before I registered my car here (WI kept renewing it by mail) and Farmers was willing to issue insurance then on an out of state vehicle. I will look into this, as I have un-registered to vote and the property tax exemption for being a state resident is teensy. However, I do take dirt-cheap community college classes at resident rates.

Did you surrender your Florida DL? You must do that to obtain a CA license.
Have your license "lost" and replaced. Use your "lost" license to obtain another state's license. The numbers on both licenses are the same (at least in AZ), so its completely doable (and done by several people I know, since AZ licenses dont expire until you turn 65 years old).
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Old May 6, 08, 12:52 pm   #12
  
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Con - jury duty in HI (a con depending on how you look at it, I guess)
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Old May 6, 08, 12:53 pm   #13
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Have your license "lost" and replaced. Use your "lost" license to obtain another state's license. The numbers on both licenses are the same (at least in AZ), so its completely doable (and done by several people I know, since AZ licenses dont expire until you turn 65 years old).
But if I submit my CA license to AZ, don't they mail it back to CA for cancellation?
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Old May 6, 08, 12:59 pm   #14
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Have your license "lost" and replaced. Use your "lost" license to obtain another state's license. The numbers on both licenses are the same (at least in AZ), so its completely doable (and done by several people I know, since AZ licenses dont expire until you turn 65 years old).
It is illegal in most (perhaps all) US states to concurrently hold a driver's license from more than one US jurisdiction.
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Old May 6, 08, 1:20 pm   #15
  
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Con - jury duty in HI (a con depending on how you look at it, I guess)
But a great excuse to visit again for renewal:

-"I'm going to Hawai'i for a week!"

-"Vacation?"

-"Nah: gotta renew my drivers license."
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