Individuals new to the state of Texas will have to meet new residency requirements to obtain a driver’s license or state identification card. The Texas Department of Public Safety put the change into effect on May 7th, 2012, and the new rule applies to first-time driver’s license and ID applicants. To meet the new policy, people who apply for a driver’s license or state ID must:
- Live in Texas for a minimum of 30 days. 30-day residency is required for most types of licenses and ID cards.
- Bring two documents showing proof of Texas state residency for a minimum of 30 days. Acceptable documents include: an apartment lease; utility bills such as water or natural gas; a satellite television, cable, or landline telephone bill (cell phone bills are not accepted); or homeowner’s insurance policies or statements. A complete and continuously updated list of acceptable documents is available at http://www.txdps.state.tx.us/driverlicense/residencyreqnoncdl.html.
Many locals and newcomers to the Lone Star state are put off by the new rules and feel the regulations are too strict. Houston area resident Barbara Kirkpatrick sees the new requirements as a major hassle. Kirkpatrick currently possesses a Louisiana license and moved to Texas in mid-March. She is not thrilled at all with the new changes. “This is a pain in the butt,” said Kirkpatrick.
There is one consolation though – the 30-day requirement can be waved for drivers who surrender a valid, non-expired out-of-state driver’s license. However, two papers proving proof of residency are indeed still needed.
Jennifer S. O’Reilly