Renewing Your Drivers License Just Got More Complicated

Monday, November 5th 2007, 8:00 pm
By: News On 6

On November 1, Oklahoma’s strict new immigration law went into effect. House Bill 1804 slows down illegal immigration in the state, but News On 6 anchor Craig Day reports it may also slow you down when you go to renew a drivers license.

Posing for her photo is the end of a longer than expected process for Jackie McKenzie to get a new drivers license.

"About four hours. By the time it is over with and I'm back to work, which I was taking a long lunch, but this was really a long lunch," driver Jackie McKenzie said.

It was long, because McKenzie's license was expired, and a new law designed to curtail illegal immigration in Oklahoma adds an extra step in getting expired licenses renewed.

"Any drivers license that has been expired one day or more must be sent to a drivers license examiner in order to be renewed," Anne Jones of the Central Tag Agency said.

Drivers must show the examiner proof of legal residence, like a birth certificate or green card. Once residency is established, drivers are then sent back to the tag office to get their license.

Up until Friday, tag offices could renew expired drivers licenses, for up to three years past their expiration date. Now, because of the new law, they cannot renew licenses one day past the expiration date. That means it will take a little longer for most folks to get their license renewed.

"I hate it. I hate it because I feel like we're suffering because of the new law," said driver Lois Gardner.

"I think that the system wasn't that flawed prior to this law change, but many times laws are made and the consequences come across later," Anne Jones of the Central Tag Agency said.

As for Jackie McKenzie, she took the wait all in stride, but she says other drivers should pay close attention to the expiration date on their license.

"This is a long procedure, to let your license expire, to have to go through,” McKenzie said.

“Double check your license?” asked News On 6 anchor Craig Day.

“Double check. Yes. Definitely," McKenzie said.

Drivers with an expired license who must go to the examiner's office do not have to take a retest if the expiration date is less than three years old.

Any changes to the law would have to be done by lawmakers during a future legislative session.

Watch the video: What You Should Know Before Renewing Your Drivers License