Kokua Line: ID records not required for every renewal, but it’s better to be safe than sorry
Question: What are the documentary requirements for renewing a driver’s license that has already been issued the gold star after previous presentation of all acceptable forms of personal ID?
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Question: What are the documentary requirements for renewing a driver’s license that has already been issued the gold star after previous presentation of all acceptable forms of personal ID? Since I am now of age where I need to renew my license every two years, do I still need to present the same information, or is my current gold-star, photo-bearing license alone sufficient if there have been no changes to resident address or name?
Answer: U.S. citizens and immigrants with permanent legal status are required to submit verifying documents every 16 years, assuming that none of the information they previously submitted has changed. So you shouldn’t have to bring your documents this time. However, it’s better to be safe than sorry. Simply showing up with your current license isn’t enough.
When you submitted your documents, the city scanned them into its system. When you show up to renew, the clerk will call up the digital versions to verify your renewal. If the city is unable to retrieve usable versions of your documents (“technical difficulties”), you won’t be able to complete your transaction without hard copies in hand as a backup.
Usually, there’s no problem, but sometimes a document can’t be retrieved because the equipment malfunctions, or the record is found but can’t be used because it was scanned in wrong and the text or image is blurry or truncated.
As we said, most applicants renew easily, but we’ve heard from enough who left empty-handed to suggest that you bring your birth certificate or passport, Social Security card and two documents proving Hawaii residency, just in case. Those are the documents most U.S. citizens use to verify REAL ID status.
Q: What about immigrants with temporary status?
A: Non-U.S. citizens without permanent legal U.S. status must verify their continued lawful presence every time they renew a Hawaii driver’s license, instruction permit, provisional driver’s license or Hawaii state identification card, according to the city.
Q: I have my gold-star license. I just moved. Do I have to go down to change my address?
A: No. You can notify the Driver License Section by mail, email or fax. To be clear, this notification won’t result in your receiving a replacement license showing your new address. The change would be made in the city’s database, and you can keep using the license you have now until it expires.
Along with a letter informing the Driver License Section of your new address, you must include two documents confirming your new Hawaii address, such as an insurance statement, utility bill, pay stub, etc. Mark out sensitive personal information (not your name and address!) before sharing. Be sure to date and sign the letter. Do not send any payment.
Mail: Driver License Section, P.O. Box 30340, Honolulu, HI 96820-0340
If you want your new address on your license, then yes, you would have to appear in person and request a duplicate license (a misnomer, since you’ll be changing your address, but that’s what it is called).
You can handle this transaction at any of Oahu’s driver licensing centers or at the Downtown, Hawaii Kai, Pearlridge or Windward City satellite city halls. Bring two documents to verify the address change. The fee for a duplicate is $6.
Mahalo to the kind young man who helped me through a busy intersection on a blustery day, literally “helping a little old lady across the street.” We must have been quite a sight as my umbrella nearly blew away, but he managed to snatch it out of thin air and keep me upright without missing a step. Ah, youth! — Grateful senior
Write to Kokua Line at Honolulu Star-Advertiser, 7 Waterfront Plaza, Suite 210, 500 Ala Moana Blvd., Honolulu 96813; call 529-4773; fax 529-4750; or email firstname.lastname@example.org.