Washington State Law says that after you move to Washington (WA), you have 30 days to get your WA driver license, if you intend to drive. Also, you'll need your driver license before you can register any vehicles. Any vehicle you drive must be registered.
Visit the Washington State Department of Licensing for more information http://www.dol.wa.gov/driverslicense/moving.html
Requirements for obtaining a support letter:
- Applicants for support letters must be in valid F or J immigration status. For F-2 and J-2 dependents, this means your F-1 or J-1 spouse or parent must also be in valid status
- Applicants must be
- current students at EWU or ELI; or
- authorized post completion Optional Practical Training or Academic Training; or
- dependents of an F-1 or J-1 who meet the above requirements
- F-1 or J-1 students must be enrolled for classes during the current or next available term
Other important information regarding driving in Washington State:
- If you operate a motor vehicle registered in this state, you must have liability insurance and carry proof that you have such insurance.
- Everyone in the vehicle needs to wear a seatbelt
- Infants and children under the age of 8 or 4'9" must be in approved car seats or child restraints, and children under 13 must be in the back seat (unless there is no back seat available)
- Driving while texting or using a hand held mobile electronic device is against the law
Operating any motor vehicle while affected by alcohol, drugs, or both is called Driving Under the Influence (DUI) and can lead to arrest, large fines and/or jail time, and your visa may be automatically cancelled. DUIs can and illegal drugs, including prescription medication and over-the-counter drugs
This is not a comprehensive list. Driver guides are available in several languages from the Washington State Department of Licensing. You are strongly encouraged to read the guide carefully before driving in Washington
The letter you receive from OGI should remain in the sealed envelope and be brought to the licensing office as part of your proof of residency and identity documents. You should also bring your passport, visa, I-94 print out, and I-20 or DS-2019. We recommend bringing a class schedule, payment receipt for the current term, schedule from the Registrar's office, transcript, and/or proof of enrollment from myEWU portal (bring as many as you can). Be sure that you have updated your local address in the myEWU portal before requesting your documents, as the address needs to match your application for a support letter.
If your visa is either a) no longer valid, or b) has a school that you are no longer attending on it, you will have to do more to prove residency. Please visit the Department of Licensing website for further guidance, and you may wish to bring a print out of the page with you.
If this is your first ever drivers license, there will be some extra steps.