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Thread: California Driver's License?

  1. #1
    Junior Member
    Join Date
    Apr 2004
    Posts
    8

    Default California Driver's License?

    Hi everyone... you all don't know me, but I feel like I know you because I
    come looking here to find all my information whenever I have questions...
    and usually a search helps me out. So hello and thank you!

    I'm hoping someone has tried to get a California drivers license recently,
    so they tell me if they had to take a drive test or not.

    My dilemma is this. Last month I finally sucked it up and sat at the stupid
    DMV, talked to someone about getting my license. I'm an Australian national,
    I have an Australian license. The staff at the DMV were really nice and it
    seemed very simple. They said all I need to do is pass a written test and I
    would be issued a CA license.

    The fact is, I'd been in there several times and each time I'd been told I
    didn't need to take a drive test, all I needed to do was take a written
    test. Which last month I finally did and they said my license was in the
    mail.

    I ended up moving earlier than anticipated and I know government mail isn't
    supposed to be forwarded (although lord knows all my INS stuff has always
    been forwarded no matter how much they say it won't be). So I called because
    I was worried about my license being returned to the DMV.

    The rep says I need a drive test. I questioned his information and he got
    all defensive saying "how can you expect to come to this country and have us
    just recognize your license like that? you need a drive test"...
    Ehhhh...Excuse me buddy, I don't "expect" anything, I'm going by what YOU
    PEOPLE told me, on numerous occaisons... get it right.

    OK, he refuses to get me a supervisor, my husband calls back to complain and
    so do I... Both reps are adamant that I DO NOT need a drive test. The second
    rep I talk to looks up the status and tells me my license is "in process"
    and is just awaiting for my SSN and associated info I provided to
    validate... she then transfers me to a supervisor and the supervisor backs
    up the rude rep and says I need a drive test too.

    I know I went off on a tangent there (apologies... venting)... but I'm
    hoping someone here has been through this process here in California and can
    tell me whether they needed a drive test or not. I'm so busy. I work
    full-time, I go to school, the next time DMV is open on a saturday is 3
    weeks away... If I don't have to take a drive test, I don't wanna, just
    because some crusty old f___ at DMV wants to make my life a little more
    difficult. I don't think thats unreasonable of me. If I have to take it
    though, I have no problem with that either... I just want the right
    information, thats all.

    I searched and I found lots of DMV experiences, but none very recent or
    specifically for California... Again, I really appreciate your help. I don't
    know where I'd be without this forum! Maybe I should post my AOS
    experience/timeline so that I can give back a bit and contribute some...

    Regards, Gina



  2. #2
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    May 2004
    Posts
    406

    Default California Driver's License?

    gina wrote:
    Hi everyone... you all don't know me, but I feel like I know you because I come looking here to find all my information whenever I have questions... and usually a search helps me out. So hello and thank you! I'm hoping someone has tried to get a California drivers license recently, so they tell me if they had to take a drive test or not.
    My wife had a Russian license and had to take the road test. I think it
    should be something easy to find out about on the DMV website.


  3. #3
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Feb 2004
    Posts
    107

    Default California Driver's License?


    Gina

    I too am an Aussie living in CA. I too had an Australian driver's
    licence. My research at the time was almost positive that I had to do
    the written AND THE DRIVE TEST - they do not recognise foreign licences.


    When I went in and did my written test, I presented my NY
    identification card (not drivers licence but and ID card I got to make
    it esaier to travel). Due to a complete fluke the guy looked at it and
    said well we will send your licence in the mail in a few weeks but here
    is the paper temp one - since you have a NY (out of state) licence you
    don't need to do the drive test. So he confused my NY ID card with a NY
    drivers licence - and I wasn't about to complain.

    Upshot is - by law
    you are required to do the drive test - sorry!


    --
    Posted via http://britishexpats.com

  4. #4
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Jan 2004
    Posts
    327

    Default California Driver's License?


    The California DMV site clearly states that you have to take a driving
    test.

    "If you have a license from another country, you will be required
    to take a driving test. If you have a license from another state, the
    driving test can be waived."


    http://www.dmv.ca.gov/dl/dl_info.htm#2500


    --
    Posted via http://britishexpats.com

  5. #5
    Member
    Join Date
    Sep 2003
    Posts
    57

    Default California Driver's License?


    Originally posted by Gina
    Hi everyone... you all don't
    know me, but I feel like I know you because I
    come looking here to
    find all my information whenever I have questions...
    and usually a
    search helps me out. So hello and thank you!
    I'm hoping someone
    has tried to get a California drivers license recently,
    so they tell
    me if they had to take a drive test or not.
    My dilemma is this.
    Last month I finally sucked it up and sat at the stupid
    DMV, talked to
    someone about getting my license. I'm an Australian national,
    I have
    an Australian license. The staff at the DMV were really nice and itseemed very simple. They said all I need to do is pass a written test
    and I
    would be issued a CA license. The fact is, I'd been in
    there several times and each time I'd been told I
    didn't need to take
    a drive test, all I needed to do was take a written
    test. Which last
    month I finally did and they said my license was in the
    mail. I
    ended up moving earlier than anticipated and I know government mail
    isn't
    supposed to be forwarded (although lord knows all my INS stuff
    has always
    been forwarded no matter how much they say it won't be). So
    I called because
    I was worried about my license being returned to the
    DMV.
    The rep says I need a drive test. I questioned his information
    and he got
    all defensive saying "how can you expect to come to this
    country and have us
    just recognize your license like that? you need a
    drive test"...
    Ehhhh...Excuse me buddy, I don't "expect" anything, I'm
    going by what YOU
    PEOPLE told me, on numerous occaisons... get it
    right.
    OK, he refuses to get me a supervisor, my husband calls back
    to complain and
    so do I... Both reps are adamant that I DO NOT need a
    drive test. The second
    rep I talk to looks up the status and tells me
    my license is "in process"
    and is just awaiting for my SSN and
    associated info I provided to
    validate... she then transfers me to a
    supervisor and the supervisor backs
    up the rude rep and says I need a
    drive test too.
    I know I went off on a tangent there (apologies...
    venting)... but I'm
    hoping someone here has been through this process
    here in California and can
    tell me whether they needed a drive test or
    not. I'm so busy. I work
    full-time, I go to school, the next time DMV
    is open on a saturday is 3
    weeks away... If I don't have to take a
    drive test, I don't wanna, just
    because some crusty old f___ at DMV
    wants to make my life a little more
    difficult. I don't think thats
    unreasonable of me. If I have to take it
    though, I have no problem
    with that either... I just want the right
    information, thats all.
    I searched and I found lots of DMV experiences, but none very recent or
    specifically for California... Again, I really appreciate your help.
    I don't
    know where I'd be without this forum! Maybe I should post my
    AOS
    experience/timeline so that I can give back a bit and contribute
    some...
    Regards, Gina
    Hi Gina
    I got my DL last autumn,
    the test is not that hard actually
    but I had to take both. However they
    issued a interim DL while I was waiting for my SS number and so that I
    could take the behind the wheel test.
    Good luck
    D


    --
    Posted via http://britishexpats.com

  6. #6
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Sep 2003
    Posts
    221

    Default California Driver's License?


    Originally posted by Gina
    I'm hoping someone has
    tried to get a California drivers license recently,
    so they tell me if
    they had to take a drive test or not.
    My dilemma is this. Last
    month I finally sucked it up and sat at the stupid DMV, talked to
    someone about getting my license. I'm an Australian national, I have an
    Australian license. The staff at the DMV were really nice and it seemed
    very simple. They said all I need to do is pass a written test and I
    would be issued a CA license.
    The fact is, I'd been in there
    several times and each time I'd been told I didn't need to take a drive
    test, all I needed to do was take a written test. Which last month I
    finally did and they said my license was in themail.
    OK, he refuses
    to get me a supervisor, my husband calls back to complain and so do I...
    Both reps are adamant that I DO NOT need a drive test. The second rep I
    talk to looks up the status and tells me my license is "in process" and
    is just awaiting for my SSN and associated info I provided to
    validate... she then transfers me to a supervisor and the supervisor
    backs
    up the rude rep and says I need a drive test too.

    Sorry, but if you were told you do not need a behind the wheel test to
    get a California drivers' license when all you have is an Australian
    license then multiple people misinformed you. The regulation has always
    been such, unless it changed since Derek (also an Aussie - where are you
    from? ) got his license finished last November. Here is the link to
    the website itself about licensure, which contains the rule about behind-the-
    wheel tests for those holding a foreign license:


    http://www.dmv.ca.gov/dl/dl_info.htm#2500

    Sorry you got
    all that confusion.


    --
    Dekka's Angel


    Posted via http://britishexpats.com

  7. #7
    Member
    Join Date
    Mar 2005
    Posts
    53

    Default California Driver's License?

    Hi Gina

    Brit here. I had to take the written and drive test. Mind you, the drive
    test was *so* easy compared to the British test it was laughable!

    D


    "gina" <gina@sbcglobal.net> wrote in message
    news:83khc.53412$0P7.27889@newssvr25.news.prodigy. com...
    Hi everyone... you all don't know me, but I feel like I know you because I come looking here to find all my information whenever I have questions... and usually a search helps me out. So hello and thank you! I'm hoping someone has tried to get a California drivers license recently, so they tell me if they had to take a drive test or not. My dilemma is this. Last month I finally sucked it up and sat at the
    stupid
    DMV, talked to someone about getting my license. I'm an Australian
    national,
    I have an Australian license. The staff at the DMV were really nice and it seemed very simple. They said all I need to do is pass a written test and
    I
    would be issued a CA license. The fact is, I'd been in there several times and each time I'd been told I didn't need to take a drive test, all I needed to do was take a written test. Which last month I finally did and they said my license was in the mail. I ended up moving earlier than anticipated and I know government mail
    isn't
    supposed to be forwarded (although lord knows all my INS stuff has always been forwarded no matter how much they say it won't be). So I called
    because
    I was worried about my license being returned to the DMV. The rep says I need a drive test. I questioned his information and he got all defensive saying "how can you expect to come to this country and have
    us
    just recognize your license like that? you need a drive test"... Ehhhh...Excuse me buddy, I don't "expect" anything, I'm going by what YOU PEOPLE told me, on numerous occaisons... get it right. OK, he refuses to get me a supervisor, my husband calls back to complain
    and
    so do I... Both reps are adamant that I DO NOT need a drive test. The seco
    nd
    rep I talk to looks up the status and tells me my license is "in process" and is just awaiting for my SSN and associated info I provided to validate... she then transfers me to a supervisor and the supervisor backs up the rude rep and says I need a drive test too. I know I went off on a tangent there (apologies... venting)... but I'm hoping someone here has been through this process here in California and
    can
    tell me whether they needed a drive test or not. I'm so busy. I work full-time, I go to school, the next time DMV is open on a saturday is 3 weeks away... If I don't have to take a drive test, I don't wanna, just because some crusty old f___ at DMV wants to make my life a little more difficult. I don't think thats unreasonable of me. If I have to take it though, I have no problem with that either... I just want the right information, thats all. I searched and I found lots of DMV experiences, but none very recent or specifically for California... Again, I really appreciate your help. I
    don't
    know where I'd be without this forum! Maybe I should post my AOS experience/timeline so that I can give back a bit and contribute some... Regards, Gina


  8. #8
    Member
    Join Date
    Mar 2004
    Posts
    58

    Default California Driver's License?

    "gina" <gina@sbcglobal.net> wrote in message news:<83khc.53412$0P7.27889@newssvr25.news.prodigy .com>...
    Hi everyone... you all don't know me, but I feel like I know you because I come looking here to find all my information whenever I have questions... and usually a search helps me out. So hello and thank you! I'm hoping someone has tried to get a California drivers license recently, so they tell me if they had to take a drive test or not.
    I haven't gone through the process recently, but the California DMV has
    a website with all the detailed info at http://www.dmv.ca.gov The
    info you're looking for is on http://www.dmv.ca.gov/dl/dl_info.htm#2500

    It says, in part

    "If you have a license from another country, you will be required to take
    a driving test. If you have a license from another state, the driving test
    can be waived."

    That first link also points toward the California Vehicle Code, the
    actual words of the laws passed by our legislators. It's not easy to
    read, but I think the relevant law is section 12804.9(1)(D), which
    says in part:

    "12804.9. (1) The examination shall include all of the following:

    [snip Sections A-C about written test, English proficiency, and signs]

    (D) An actual demonstration of the applicant's ability to exercise
    ordinary and reasonable control in operating a motor vehicle by driving
    it under the supervision of an examining officer. The applicant shall
    submit to an examination appropriate to the type of motor vehicle or
    combination of vehicles he or she desires a license to drive, except
    that the department may waive the driving test part of the examination
    for any applicant who submits a license issued by another state,
    territory, or possession of the United States, the District of Columbia,
    or the Commonwealth of Puerto Rico ..."

    The full text of that section is at
    http://www.dmv.ca.gov/pubs/vctop/d06/vc12804_9.htm


    I'm afraid you have to take the driving test unless you already have
    a valid license from the USA, and whatever clerk(s) told you
    that another country's license could be used to waive the driver's
    test were probably confused.

    --Rich
    (not a lawyer, not even pretending to be one, just looking up
    info on the web).

  9. #9
    Junior Member
    Join Date
    Apr 2004
    Posts
    8

    Default California Driver's License?

    See, I think thats what happened to me... I gave them military id and my
    green card, passport... (I come prepared!) and my Aussie DL... and they were
    like "we don't need that"... I'm like... OK, don't you want to even look at
    it? Apparently not.

    I don't mind taking the test, I expected to take a drive test... I'm just
    irked that the person who eventually told me so was so god****ed rude, and
    not only that, I was expecting it in the mail at any moment. I thought I was
    done! So thats why I feel put out.

    Thanks

    "alect" <member21273@british_expats.com> wrote in message
    news:1378467.1082524138@britishexpats.com...
    Gina I too am an Aussie living in CA. I too had an Australian driver's licence. My research at the time was almost positive that I had to do the written AND THE DRIVE TEST - they do not recognise foreign licences. When I went in and did my written test, I presented my NY identification card (not drivers licence but and ID card I got to make it esaier to travel). Due to a complete fluke the guy looked at it and said well we will send your licence in the mail in a few weeks but here is the paper temp one - since you have a NY (out of state) licence you don't need to do the drive test. So he confused my NY ID card with a NY drivers licence - and I wasn't about to complain. Upshot is - by law you are required to do the drive test - sorry! -- Posted via http://britishexpats.com


  10. #10
    Junior Member
    Join Date
    Apr 2004
    Posts
    8

    Default California Driver's License?

    Right, the DMV website does, but the DMV employees mostly don't say that.

    I wanted to know what others had to do to get a CA license, if they had to
    take a drive test - I did see the website. Thx.

    "hcj1440" <member19487@british_expats.com> wrote in message
    news:1378520.1082526545@britishexpats.com...
    The California DMV site clearly states that you have to take a driving test. "If you have a license from another country, you will be required to take a driving test. If you have a license from another state, the driving test can be waived." http://www.dmv.ca.gov/dl/dl_info.htm#2500 -- Posted via http://britishexpats.com


  11. #11
    Junior Member
    Join Date
    Apr 2004
    Posts
    8

    Default California Driver's License?

    Yeah, my husband says it's not hard too, he says you'd have to be pretty
    awful to fail the test, heh. It's just a pain in the you-know-what more than
    anything else. If I'd been told I need a drive test, I would have already
    had it done the same day I took my written!

    "berga" <member11049@british_expats.com> wrote in message
    news:1379562.1082566307@britishexpats.com...
    Originally posted by Gina
    Hi everyone... you all don't
    know me, but I feel like I know you because I
    come looking here to
    find all my information whenever I have questions...
    and usually a
    search helps me out. So hello and thank you!
    I'm hoping someone
    has tried to get a California drivers license recently,
    so they tell
    me if they had to take a drive test or not.
    My dilemma is this.
    Last month I finally sucked it up and sat at the stupid
    DMV, talked to
    someone about getting my license. I'm an Australian national,
    I have
    an Australian license. The staff at the DMV were really nice and it seemed very simple. They said all I need to do is pass a written test and I
    would be issued a CA license. The fact is, I'd been in
    there several times and each time I'd been told I
    didn't need to take
    a drive test, all I needed to do was take a written
    test. Which last
    month I finally did and they said my license was in the
    mail. I
    ended up moving earlier than anticipated and I know government mail isn't
    supposed to be forwarded (although lord knows all my INS stuff
    has always
    been forwarded no matter how much they say it won't be). So
    I called because
    I was worried about my license being returned to the
    DMV.
    The rep says I need a drive test. I questioned his information
    and he got
    all defensive saying "how can you expect to come to this
    country and have us
    just recognize your license like that? you need a
    drive test"...
    Ehhhh...Excuse me buddy, I don't "expect" anything, I'm
    going by what YOU
    PEOPLE told me, on numerous occaisons... get it
    right.
    OK, he refuses to get me a supervisor, my husband calls back
    to complain and
    so do I... Both reps are adamant that I DO NOT need a
    drive test. The second
    rep I talk to looks up the status and tells me
    my license is "in process"
    and is just awaiting for my SSN and
    associated info I provided to
    validate... she then transfers me to a
    supervisor and the supervisor backs
    up the rude rep and says I need a
    drive test too.
    I know I went off on a tangent there (apologies...
    venting)... but I'm
    hoping someone here has been through this process
    here in California and can
    tell me whether they needed a drive test or
    not. I'm so busy. I work
    full-time, I go to school, the next time DMV
    is open on a saturday is 3
    weeks away... If I don't have to take a
    drive test, I don't wanna, just
    because some crusty old f___ at DMV
    wants to make my life a little more
    difficult. I don't think thats
    unreasonable of me. If I have to take it
    though, I have no problem
    with that either... I just want the right
    information, thats all.
    I searched and I found lots of DMV experiences, but none very recent or
    specifically for California... Again, I really appreciate your help.
    I don't
    know where I'd be without this forum! Maybe I should post my
    AOS
    experience/timeline so that I can give back a bit and contribute
    some...
    Regards, Gina
    Hi Gina I got my DL last autumn, the test is not that hard actually but I had to take both. However they issued a interim DL while I was waiting for my SS number and so that I could take the behind the wheel test. Good luck D -- Posted via http://britishexpats.com


  12. #12
    Junior Member
    Join Date
    Apr 2004
    Posts
    8

    Default California Driver's License?

    Yeah I know... But since the DMV employees seem to say different things, I
    wondered if others had to take the drive test too, or if they scraped by
    without it. It sucks to have to devote another Saturday morning to that
    hole.

    I'm originally from Sydney... I've been in CA for about a year and a half
    though. Used to live in Maryland though!
    Sorry, but if you were told you do not need a behind the wheel test to get a California drivers' license when all you have is an Australian license then multiple people misinformed you. The regulation has always been such, unless it changed since Derek (also an Aussie - where are you from? ) got his license finished last November. Here is the link to the website itself about licensure, which contains the rule about
    behind-the-
    wheel tests for those holding a foreign license: http://www.dmv.ca.gov/dl/dl_info.htm#2500 Sorry you got all that confusion. -- Dekka's Angel Posted via http://britishexpats.com


  13. #13
    Junior Member
    Join Date
    Apr 2004
    Posts
    8

    Default California Driver's License?

    Yeah, I saw that too, but I kinda wanted to know if others scraped by
    without having to do it!

    "Richard Cochran" <rcochran@lanset.com> wrote in message
    news:22526900.0404210923.ce781ef@posting.google.co m...
    "gina" <gina@sbcglobal.net> wrote in message
    news:<83khc.53412$0P7.27889@newssvr25.news.prodigy .com>...
    Hi everyone... you all don't know me, but I feel like I know you because
    I
    come looking here to find all my information whenever I have
    questions...
    and usually a search helps me out. So hello and thank you! I'm hoping someone has tried to get a California drivers license
    recently,
    so they tell me if they had to take a drive test or not. I haven't gone through the process recently, but the California DMV has a website with all the detailed info at http://www.dmv.ca.gov The info you're looking for is on http://www.dmv.ca.gov/dl/dl_info.htm#2500 It says, in part "If you have a license from another country, you will be required to take a driving test. If you have a license from another state, the driving test can be waived." That first link also points toward the California Vehicle Code, the actual words of the laws passed by our legislators. It's not easy to read, but I think the relevant law is section 12804.9(1)(D), which says in part: "12804.9. (1) The examination shall include all of the following: [snip Sections A-C about written test, English proficiency, and signs] (D) An actual demonstration of the applicant's ability to exercise ordinary and reasonable control in operating a motor vehicle by driving it under the supervision of an examining officer. The applicant shall submit to an examination appropriate to the type of motor vehicle or combination of vehicles he or she desires a license to drive, except that the department may waive the driving test part of the examination for any applicant who submits a license issued by another state, territory, or possession of the United States, the District of Columbia, or the Commonwealth of Puerto Rico ..." The full text of that section is at http://www.dmv.ca.gov/pubs/vctop/d06/vc12804_9.htm I'm afraid you have to take the driving test unless you already have a valid license from the USA, and whatever clerk(s) told you that another country's license could be used to waive the driver's test were probably confused. --Rich (not a lawyer, not even pretending to be one, just looking up info on the web).


  14. #14
    Junior Member
    Join Date
    Apr 2004
    Posts
    8

    Default California Driver's License?

    It is, once someone told me... but Iwanted to know if others had to do it,
    or if they got issued one anyway, by talking to employees who think they
    don't need a drive test.

    I'd still be clueless unless I just happened to call the DMV about a totally
    separate issue!

    "mrtravelkay" <a@a.aa.a> wrote in message
    news:vQmhc.39204$5A2.6246@newssvr29.news.prodigy.c om...
    gina wrote:
    Hi everyone... you all don't know me, but I feel like I know you because
    I
    come looking here to find all my information whenever I have
    questions...
    and usually a search helps me out. So hello and thank you! I'm hoping someone has tried to get a California drivers license
    recently,
    so they tell me if they had to take a drive test or not. My wife had a Russian license and had to take the road test. I think it should be something easy to find out about on the DMV website.


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