Subject: DL Denials at DDS Centers in GA
Contributor: Brett Reichert, Georgia State University
Dear GAIE Colleagues who work with international students and scholars,
Update (08/23/2017): Good news. I have an update from the legal counsel for DDS regarding the DL’s renewal issue for individuals with lawful presence and expired visas. We had a positive conversation last week about some of the various federal regulatory, statutory, political and state level issues around this dilemma.
"8/21/17: Thank you for following up. We are still waiting on something official from DHS. However, until we receive the official response from Homeland Security we have authorized our DDS locations to issue to customers who present an unexpired foreign passport with a valid I-94 and document with a period of authorized duration of stay (F1, J1, I-20...) The customers still have to clear SAVE and present other required documents for residence, SSN denial, etc."
It seems like those who have been denied a DL for expired visas can now try again with the expectation of issuance. I would be interested to know if you hear of continued denials.
I wanted to send an update to my July 20th post asking for input on denials of GA driver license renewals for Georgia international students and scholars. I’ve now heard from campuses across the state, so the issue is no longer just in metro Atlanta.
Georgia Department of Driver Services
Regarding DDS’s refusal to issue DL’s through the grace period of an initial I-20 or DS-2019, and their refusal to renew DL’s during a pending OPT application that is receipted within the grace period, those are separate issue. DDS doesn’t seem to recognize or be concerned with unnecessarily stranding those customers either despite lawful presence. One way to advise on this is to recommend that OPT applicants select an employment start date the day after their program end date. That may help reduce driving woes for this population until DDS is authorized to address this harmful issue.
This blog is to serve as a resource for those new in the International Education field and for those looking for support from likeminded professionals