New driver license security requirements begin June 1
by Wyoming Department of Transportation
May 23, 2011
Beginning June 1, anyone getting a new driver license or renewing their existing Wyoming license will be required to provide additional documentation verifying their identity to comply with federal security regulations.
The Wyoming Legislature adopted the federal requirements into state law, and the documents acceptable to verify identity for U.S. citizens include:
• certified birth certificate;
• valid U.S. passport;
• consular report of birth abroad;
• certificate of citizenship; or
• certificate of naturalization.
Those born in Wyoming can get a certified copy of their birth certificate from the Wyoming Department of Health’s Vital Statistics Services for $13. Those born in another state can find where to get a certified birth certificate by going to http://www.cdc.gov/nchs/w2w.htm
For non-citizens, acceptable identity documentation includes a valid foreign passport with a U.S. visa and an approved form documenting the applicant's most recent admittance to the country, a permanent resident card or employment authorization document.
As states begin complying with the federal security regulations between now and January 2013, a valid state-issued driver license or identification card from a compliant state will become acceptable proof of identity.
"We’re doing this for improved identity security, fraud prevention and to comply with federal security regulations," said Don Edington, manager of WYDOT’s Driver Services Program. "As much as we possibly can, we’re making sure no one is stealing your identity. The bottom line is we need to make sure you are who you say you are, and you’re in the country legally."
Applicants also are required to verify their Social Security number and provide at least two documents to verify legal residence in Wyoming.
"Your Social Security number does not appear on your license, but we need to see your card or some other acceptable Social Security document to verify your number matches your name," Edington said. "We also need some proof that you actually live in Wyoming."
Acceptable documents to prove Wyoming residency include:
• Wyoming vehicle title or registration;
• lease agreement or rent receipt;
• utility bill;
• voter registration certificate;
• property tax assessment;
• income tax return
• pay stub; or
• Wyoming resident hunting or fishing license.
All documents presented will be examined and scanned. The originals will be returned to the applicant, unless they are found to be fraudulent or suspicious.
Since the Legislature began requiring Driver Services Program employees to complete training in identifying fraudulent identity documents, they are discovering more false documents being submitted by those seeking Wyoming licenses, Edington said.
Photocopies of identity documents are not acceptable unless they are certified by a state agency. Registration of birth from a hospital is not an acceptable substitute for a birth certificate certified by the state. Documents laminated after they were issued may not be accepted because that can prevent checking security features or making sure the document is not a photocopy.
Applicants whose names have changed for any reason will be required to verify their identity through documentation such as a certificate of marriage, divorce, adoption or legal name change.
Once a drivers have submitted the required documents the first time, they won’t be required again until they have to renew for a second time eight years later.
Federal regulations and state law allow the department to accept some other documentation to establish identity in cases where reasons beyond the applicant's control prevent them from presenting the required documents.
"We do have cases in which some elderly people never had a birth certificate, for example, and we’ll deal with those on a case-by-case basis," Edington said. "But for most people, when they come in to get their license or renew it, they should bring one acceptable document to verify their identity, two to verify Wyoming residency and their Social Security card or other document to verify their number."