Can You Buy a Driver’s License in New York?
If you own a car but do not yet possess a driver’s license, and reside in New York State, you may be asking: Can I purchase one here?
Your vehicle purchase could serve a specific purpose, from serving those with disabilities who require the aid of caregivers, to business use by licensed employees.
An individual in the United States who operates any motor vehicle – from cars, trucks, motorcycles and trailers – requires a valid driver’s license from their state to operate them legally. Unfortunately, due to federal government policy on immigrant undocumented immigration statuses they do not receive such documents from state governments.
There are a few methods available for you to obtain a driver’s license without being legally present in the country, although you might encounter limitations or obstacles along the way.
One way is to apply for a foreign driving permit (IDP). Your local AAA branch offers these, though you will require both your valid US driver’s license and two passport-sized photos as proof.
An alternative option would be to obtain a restricted license, which are available in states like California and Washington D.C. This document won’t count towards immigration purposes but law enforcement can still use it to verify your identity.
On Tuesday, several undocumented immigrants rallied and asked New York Governor Andrew Cuomo to support a bill allowing them to obtain driver’s licenses; some also encouraged him to make his position clear in budget negotiations. But opponents have noted that such legislation likely won’t pass, particularly where Democrats control both houses of state government as well as county clerks opposing it.