After a long wait, undocumented immigrants will now be able to apply for driver’s licenses in New Jersey.
Starting Saturday, May 1, certain residents – including undocumented people – will be able to apply for New Jersey’s standard license, which is different from REAL IDs, that are issued to lawful residents and are required to access federal buildings or fly commercially without a passport.
Status Neutral Licensing is coming to New Jersey May 1! Join the NJMVC team for a Facebook Live Event tomorrow, Friday, April 30, at noon for an overview of the process, start to finish: https://t.co/7kxZP4Iw2H. #NJLicensesForAll pic.twitter.com/pPLj2m06Xf
The bill approving state licenses for undocumented immigrants was passed in 2019 and was set to take effect Jan. 1 of 2021, but the pandemic caused the date to be pushed back to May 1.
Everyone should expect extra traffic at MVC locations as more people can now access services.
Here’s what you’ll need to apply for your license and be ready:
The law requires applicants to show proof of age, identity and residence in order to be able to start the process of obtaining the new state license.
In total, New Jersey requires six points of proof of ID. The motor vehicle department thankfully has a convenient online tool to show you how many points certain documents will earn you. Once you’ve used the tool, you should print out the page and bring it with you (along with the documents) when you go to the Motor Vehicle Agency.
Here some of the documents you might need (which you’ll also see if you click on the tool linked above):
Remember, the documents we listed are not exhaustive, and will change this spring so use the state’s online tool to see all your options.
For any more questions regarding requirements and the process, visit the MVC site here.
You’ll need to translate documents that are not already in English
It’s important to note that any documents you bring with you to the MVA that are written in another language must first be translated into English by a professional. The translated documents don’t need to be certified, but they should include a note from the person who did the translating.
People who have a final order of deportation, a criminal record or who have previously tried to obtain a license in another state should consult with a lawyer before beginning the application process for the New Jersey license.
The new standard New Jersey license does not comply with federal REAL ID standards. This means people will not be able to use the standard license to travel or visit federal buildings after October 2021.
A REAL ID will have a star and/or flag on it, or it will say “Enhanced.”
If you plan to drive, then yes. However, the test can be taken in a language other than English.
The total cost for the photo license is $24.
You can schedule your appointment online through the MVA’s website.