Question: I am confused about the driver’s license renewal by mail for certain drivers over 72. The city’s website said one thing, but then when I called I got different information. Can you please clarify?
Answer: Yes. The Honolulu County’s Department of Customer Services is changing the policy it announced this week allowing Oahu applicants over age 72 to renew by mail, as long as they already hold a valid, two-year Hawaii driver’s license that expires in 2020 and do not require a secondary medical clearance.
People who meet those requirements can still renew by mail, but they can no longer mail in their application and fee directly — the city will first verify that they are eligible, Sheri Kajiwara, the department’s director, said Thursday. Many people who were not eligible were trying to use the streamlined process, she said, apologizing for any confusion.
The city updated one section of its website Thursday, at honolulu.gov/csd, in the FAQs, to reflect the change. However, outdated information remained elsewhere on the website. We’ll spell out the revised process, as provided by Kajiwara.
Remember, this applies to Oahu applicants who meet the described requirements:
Send a letter requesting to renew your Hawaii driver’s license. To process the application, the following information must be included in your letter: (Note: The earliest you can renew is six months before the expiration date printed on the license.)
>> Name (as it appears on the license)
>> Mailing address
>> Social Security number (last four digits) or Hawaii driver’s license number
>> Date of birth
>> Email address
>> Applicant’s signature
Mail your letter to:
Driver License Section
P.O. Box 30340
Honolulu, HI 96820-0340
Or you can email your signed and dated letter to email@example.com or fax it to 768-9096.
Once your letter, email or fax is received and your eligibility is verified, the city will mail or email a renewal packet to you with the appropriate instructions. Complete and return all of the forms.
Besides the other requirements, applicants are eligible to renew by mail only if they don’t have temporary lawful status in the United States, they don’t have any compliance requirements pending in another jurisdiction and they don’t have a previously reported medical condition that has required a reevaluation every renewal, according to the city.
Oahu applicants over age 72 who want to renew a state ID that expires in 2020 would follow the same revised process as described for a driver’s license, although the applicant would request a state ID. Once the person is deemed eligible, the process for a state ID could vary from that for the driver’s license, depending on whether the person’s identity documents are on file, Kajiwara said.
Bottom line: Don’t send an application and check directly to the city.
Until further notice, the Hawaii Employer-Union Health Benefits Trust Fund and the Employees’ Retirement System have suspended in-person service due to the spread of COVID-19.
EUTF said it would no longer conduct in-person counseling sessions or accept walk-ins. It advised active employees and retirees to visit the EUTF website at eutf.hawaii.gov at any time or to call the office at 586-7390 or 800-295-0089 during regular business hours.
“The EUTF will continue operations ensuring that members’ health benefits continue, allowable changes are made and transmitted to the carriers, active employee open enrollment (April 1-30, 2020) is conducted, retirees are reimbursed quarterly for their Medicare Part B premiums, etc.,” it said in a news release.
Retirees and those filing for retirement should mail their enrollment forms and supporting documents to EUTF at 201 Merchant St., Suite 1700, Honolulu, HI 96813. Active employees must submit their enrollment forms and supporting documents to their departmental human resource office or county personnel offices, it said.
Members who submit payments directly to EUTF should make payments online at eutf.hawaii.gov or by mail to the EUTF at 201 Merchant St., Suite 1650; Honolulu, HI 96813.
EUTF provides an array of health and insurance benefits to state and county employees, retirees and dependents throughout Hawaii.
The ERS also said it would suspend in-person services at Oahu and neighbor island offices, citing the pandemic. Retirement counselors will be available by phone or email and retirement documents may be mailed in (notarized, if required) or be dropped off at the Honolulu office for review by ERS staff.
Contact the ERS by phone at (808) 586-1735 or by email at firstname.lastname@example.org. Check the ERS website at ers.ehawaii.gov for benefit information, forms and other resources.
ERS said it would continue to process retirement applications and make benefit payments as scheduled.
The ERS provides retirement and other benefits to more than 140,000 members statewide, including people who work for or have retired from the state or counties.
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 email@example.com.
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