General Information: A driver license or state ID is a major form of
identification in the United States. It is an official government-issued ID. In
addition to operating a motor vehicle, a U.S. drivers license can be used as a
form of identification for several other purposes such as cashing checks,
opening bank accounts, traveling within the United States, and as proof of legal
age to buy alcohol and tobacco. A State ID can be used as a form of
identification, but not to operate a motor vehicle.
Unlike other countries, the United States federal government does not issue a
national drivers licenses or identification card. Each of the 50 U.S. States
issue their own drivers licenses and state IDs, and they can be used anywhere in
the United States, Canada, and even abroad in certain countries.
Eligibility Requirements: There are generic requirements for obtaining a U.S.
drivers license such as a written test, road test and vision test. However, each
of the 50 U.S. states (and U.S. territories) have their own requirements and
application procedures. There are also different procedures for first-time
applications, out-of-state transfers and renewals. Certain states allow foreign
licenses to be used a proof of an individual's ability to operate a motor
vehicle, thus not requiring the individual to take the road test again. There
are also different “classes” of licenses depending on what type of vehicle you
wish to drive: cars, motorcycles, trucks or commercial vehicles. You can also
transfer your out-of-state license to your new home state. This process differs
from state to state, but in general you have to take the vision test and/or the
written test excluding the driving test.