License Restoration - Out of State Licenses and what if I've moved out of Michigan?

August 24, 2009

In recent years, the number of Michigan residents who are moving out of state has been growing. Given the current downturn in the economy, and the huge manufacturing job losses here, especially in the Tri-County Area, that number will likely continue to grow.

Among all those people leaving Michigan, any number have had their Driver's License Suspended or Revoked. Let's speak candidly for a moment; If I wasn't a Driver's License Restoration Attorney, and I didn't have a valid Michigan Driver's License, and I was moving out of state, the first thing I'd wonder is "can I just go and get a license in the state to which I'm moving?" As it turns out, the across-the-board answer to that question is "no."

Driver Lady.jpgMany years ago, it was possible to obtain a license in certain, different states, even if you had a Suspended or Revoked License in your former home state. Those days are long over, however. Part of that has to do with the reason you're reading this - the computer revolution.

The law basically boils down to this: If your license is suspended or revoked in Michigan, you must clear whatever underlying suspension(s) or revocation(s) you have here before any other state will issue a Driver's License. In a previous blog post, I discussed the differences between Suspended and Revoked Licenses.

Depending on the status of your Michigan License, the problems on your Michigan Driving Record can be "cleared" in order to make way for the out of state license. The best way to determine that status, if you're not completely clear about it, is to obtain a copy of your Michigan Driving Record. This link will help you do that.

What can be done, and what cannot, depends on whether or not the you are eligible for an appeal, either to a Court, or, more usually, to the Secretary of State's Driver Assessment and Appeal Division (DAAD).

If your license is merely Suspended must "clear up" those suspensions in order to get an out-of-state license. This can involve anything from paying overdue traffic tickets to going to Court.

If your license has been Revoked, you must first be eligible for an Appeal to the DAAD. If you do not know whether you are eligible yet, the best way to find out is to get a copy of your Driving Record from the Michigan Secretary of State. I have provided a link here to make that request if you're living out of state.

As part of my role in handling License Restorations, I always want to first review a potential Client's driving record. I do this without charge, because if a person has another year, or two, or more, to wait before they can appeal their Revocation, then I can at least advise them of that and invite them to call back closer to their eligibility date. The Secretary of State also provides a rather detailed guide entitled "How to read a Driving Record." Generally, the Secretary of State will accept an appeal about 6 weeks prior to a person's actual Eligibility Date, because it takes at least that long from the time an appeal is filed, to the time of the Hearing Date.