General Question

RandomMrdan's avatar

If you need a license, would you have to pay a reinstatement fee for two states?

Asked by RandomMrdan (7423points) March 13th, 2010

My cousin is living here in Ohio, and I helped him by paying a reinstatement fee of 125 dollars. When he went to take his license test, he was informed he needed to reinstated his license in Alabama.

I was confused by this, because he isn’t trying to get an Alabama license. He’s never had an Ohio driver’s license, but I paid the reinstatement fee here in Ohio.

Is it possible that I paid the reinstatement fee, but Alabama hasn’t been notified yet?

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15 Answers

john65pennington's avatar

Did your cousin ever notify Alabama that he moved? i think this is the law in each state. when Ohio attempted to give your cousin a dl from their state, their computer showed he still had a dl from Alabama. under these circumstances, computers will only except one name, one date of birth. since the Ohio computer recognized another dl, this is why you received this notice. also, if you have two residences, you will have to have a dl from each state, in some circumstances.

RandomMrdan's avatar

I just called my cousin, he had an Alabama license, and moved to Ohio, and had it transferred.

RandomMrdan's avatar

and he spent 9 years in prison, and I’m helping him out. I reinstated the license, and now they’re telling him he needs to pay it for Alabama as well.

CyanoticWasp's avatar

Your question is confusing on so many levels. Not just the facts that you’re presenting, but the language is also confusing, and the type of license is omitted, so I’ll assume “driver’s license”.

Has your cousin had his Alabama license suspended for some reason? That’s the only reason that I can think that he would need to have it “reinstated”. I’ve moved dozens of times and had new driver’s licenses in most of the states that I’ve moved to. The process is, you surrender your (valid) license from Old State, pay the fee, take the test, and receive license from New State. I’ve never encountered any kind of “reinstatement” thing.

But I’ve never had a license suspended—or run out past its expiration—so the entire “reinstatement” term is new to me.

I’m guessing that if your cousin had a license suspended or revoked, then Ohio might want to ascertain that the suspension of his privilege to drive in Alabama was no longer in force, and that he wasn’t just “jurisdiction shopping” to bypass the suspension / revocation to get a new, valid license from another state. (You can see why they would want to do that, right?) And it’s not up to the State of Ohio to delve into court proceedings in Alabama to verify this: all they want to know is, “are they replacing a valid license, and has the punishment period ended to enable that to happen?”

The other thing that occurs to me is that his Alabama license ran out (expired) and Ohio needs to know if he’s still even qualified to drive in Alabama (would his license even be renewed there?) or does he need to take the road test and everything in Ohio.

Shae's avatar

If his license was revoked in Alabama he will have to have it reinstated in Alabama. You need to have Ohio give you your money back. They should not have taken that money.

PandoraBoxx's avatar

I agree with @Shae. The chain of events needs to start at the beginning. If the AL license was suspended first, then it needed to be reinstated first. For OH’s purposes, AL license should have been transferred. OH should not have reinstated a license that could not be transferred, which is what they are saying, by requiring the AL license to be reinstated.

The question then becomes what statutes OH has with regards to transferring licenses that have been reinstated in another state. In looking at their website, the very first line would support that they should have not taken the reinstatement fee If you are currently under a license suspension by the Ohio Bureau of Motor Vehicles (BMV) This doesn’t apply to your cousin, because OH did not suspend his license. Further down the page they list fees for Non-Resident Reinstatement. This would apply to people no longer living in OH that need to have their license reinstated (exactly your cousin’s situation in AL)

Here’s the Alabama reinstatement guidelines as posted.

Ron_C's avatar

I live in Pennsylvania and have lived in other states. The one thing that they have in common is that you need a license for the state in which you live. So if he moved from Alabama to Ohio, he needs a Ohio license. Further, it is illegal (in every state where I lived) to have more than one drivers license.

Since it has been a long time since he has had an Alabama license, why doesn’t he just take the Ohio test and be done with it. There is no reason to re-instate an old license.

CyanoticWasp's avatar

@Ron_C I think the answer to your question would be “because there’s a line on every license application asking ‘Has your privilege to drive been suspended or revoked in any other state?’”

And if he answers untruthfully “no”, then criminal sanctions could (and would) apply when the law catches up to him. And it surely would, sooner or later.

Ron_C's avatar

@CyanoticWasp I don’t remember that line but it makes sense. If the guy was actually in prison, the last thing he needs to do is lie on his driver’s license application.

RandomMrdan's avatar

He lived in Alabama, and he transferred it to Ohio. After he moved to Ohio, he was put in prison and I think it was either suspended or revoked. And now I paid the fee here in Ohio to reinstate it.

These are the details as I understand them. Given this information, would he still have to pay Alabama?

mrrich724's avatar

As far as I know, DMVs systems go state by state, so if he wanted to reinstate his Alabama DL, he should have paid them.

It doesn’t make sense that you would have to pay Ohio anything just to reinstate an AL license.

Ron_C's avatar

@RandomMrdan there is no reason to reinstate his Alabama license. If fact it would probably be illegal. Like I said, you can get in trouble for having two licenses.

Strauss's avatar

I had a problem like that. In the seventies, I lived in Illinois. Got a ticket, left state in ‘78 to work in Wyoming. Didn’t need a license to do my work, so I didn’t think about it. In 1979, I was in New Orleans, took the driving test, and got a Louisiana driver’s license. In ‘81, moved to Texas, turned in my Louisiana license for a Texas one. In 1988, I moved to Florida, got a Florida license from my Texas license. 1994, moved to Georgia, no problem changing license.

In most states, if not all, they will not give you a license if you have license, whether suspended, revoked, or current, from another state.

In 1996 I moved to Colorado, and technology caught up with me. They had computers! My Illinois license had been suspended back in the seventies. If I had been caught driving in Illinois, I would have been in trouble for driving on a suspended license. I had to pay the fine in Illinois, pay to have my Illinois license reinstated, and then apply for my Colorado license.

cherrybomn's avatar

I have a friend who lived in florida for a while but still had his texas drivers license and got into a wreck. They gave him a ticket for it and now it is showing up on his criminal background check and he cannot get an apartment for having a texas drivers license while he lived in Florida. Can they really do this?

RandomMrdan's avatar

@cherrybomn that’s messed up, youmay want to ask a separate question on fluther.

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