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Everything You Need to Know About AB 60 Licenses

Updated on April 10, 2024

At a Glance

  • AB 60 licenses are driver’s licenses available to California residents who cannot provide proof of legal U.S. presence but meet DMV requirements and can demonstrate California residency.
  • These licenses are particularly relevant for undocumented immigrants, allowing them to drive lawfully and fulfill essential tasks.
  • To obtain an AB 60 license, applicants must submit an application, study for and pass knowledge tests, provide proof of residency and identity, pay the application fee, pass vision and driving exams, and show evidence of financial responsibility.
  • The license is valid for driving and state ID purposes but cannot be used for federal identification, voting, work, or federal benefits.

Applying for an AB 60 can be a very confusing process for many people, especially if they didn’t do any research beforehand. Still, an AB 60 can be very beneficial for some individuals, which is why they decide to apply for one at one point in their life. So, what is an AB 60 and how can you apply for one? Read everything about it in the following paragraphs.

What Is an AB 60 License?

AB 60 licenses are driver’s licenses meant for people who cannot bring any evidence that they are legally present in the United States. At the same time, they are eligible under the California DMV requirements and can show evidence of their residency in California.

The AB 60 driver’s license was signed into law by Governor Brown in 2013. As a result, the Department of Motor Vehicles has to give a driver’s license to all qualifying California residents, no matter what immigration status they have. So, even in the case of an undocumented immigrant applying for a driver’s license, he/she can get it thanks to the AB 60.

The immigrant communities in the state took this as an immense victory. Now that AB 60 allows them to obtain a driver’s license, immigrant parents have the opportunity to drive lawfully. This means that parents will have the chance to drive to the doctor and take their children to school, for example.

Furthermore, this law was seen as a win by people who live in the state. The driver’s license is not just offered to anyone either. Before they can obtain the license, people have to show evidence of their insurance, as well as pass a written test related to driving rules and a proper driving test. Of course, a vision test will have to be taken too. Public safety is ensured this way.  

It’s important to mention that this document is valid for state ID purposes and for driving. Therefore, it cannot be used as a form of federal ID, and you cannot use it for specific federal purposes. If you want to enter restricted parts of federal buildings, you cannot use your AB 60 driver’s license. Moreover, this license doesn’t give you the right to vote, work or get any benefits that you are not eligible for already.

Who Needs an AB 60 License?

AB 60 licenses are for people who cannot bring proof of their legal U.S. presence. If someone meets the California DMV requirements and can bring proof of California residency and identity yet cannot show evidence of their legal presence in the country, then they need an AB 60 driver’s license to be able to drive.

More often than not, these people are immigrants, more specifically undocumented immigrants. Anyone who is part of this category and wants to drive should consider an AB 60 license.

How to Get an AB 60 License

To get your AB 60 license, you will have to apply for it. There are multiple steps you have to go through in order to apply for the license successfully, though, so you need to make sure you do everything right. Here are the steps you should follow when aiming to obtain an AB 60 license:Send an Application: The first thing you have to do is complete the Driver’s License or Identification Card Application.

Study for the Test: You will have to take a knowledge test before you can actually drive. So, the most important thing to do is to study for this test. You can find multiple resources that will help you prepare before you take the DL knowledge test.

Go to a DMV Office: The next step is that you’ll have to go to a DMV office, but not before scheduling an appointment. When you eventually go there on the settled date, you will first have to show proof of California residency and proof of identity. Once you show the proof, you can pay the application fee. This fee is nonrefundable, so you need to be aware that you will not be able to recover this money in case you fail the tests. After paying the fee, you need to get your thumbprint scanned and then pass a vision exam. They will also take a photo of you. Next, you’ll take the knowledge test(s) that you need to pass. You have three chances to pass the knowledge test, so if you fail three times, your application will not be valid anymore, which means you have to apply once again. Afterward, you should pass a road sign test if it applies to your case.

Take the Driving Test: If everything goes according to the plan and you pass the test, you will have to take a behind-the-wheel driving test. This has to be scheduled. So, make sure to schedule the driving test appointment, or else you won’t be able to take the test. Then, show some evidence of your financial responsibility, like auto insurance. It should meet or exceed the insurance requirements of California.

Also, there are a few things you should know if you want to get an AB 60 license or you know someone who has one. First of all, it is a valid driver’s license in California, and your license should be accepted by state or local law enforcement the same way any other state-issued license is accepted.

Nobody from law enforcement has the right to use your AB 60 driver’s license in order to look at your immigration status as it’s something that needs to be investigated from a criminal point of view. Also, no officials or state or local agencies should discriminate against you just because you have an AB 60 license.

At the same time, you need to make sure you don’t try to use the license in federal facilities or to enter a restricted area, nor to pass through an airport TSA. Also, if you show this license to another state’s law enforcement, you might put yourself at great risk. Lastly, make sure you don’t use the license as proof of identity with federal law enforcement officers.

Documents Required for an AB 60 License

Several documents may be required to help you apply for an AB 60 license. Here is what you will need:

  • Valid Foreign Document approved by DMV
  • An expired driver’s license or California Identification Card

You should also have as many of the following as you can:

  • Court documents
  • Income tax returns
  • School documents
  • U.S. DHS documents
  • ID cards with a photograph of the person applying given by a government or within the U.S. government
  • Documents that show civil unity or marital status
  • Birth documents

Then, you should have one of these documents:

  • Medical documents
  • School documents
  • Lease or rental agreements that have the signature of the landlord/owner and resident/tenant
  • Home utility bills
  • Mortgage bills
  • Titles or deeds to the residential real property
  • Employment documents
  • Insurance documents
  • Faith-based documents
  • Change of Address confirmations by the Postal Service of the U.S.

AB 60 License Cost

To get an AB 60 license, you will have to pay the same amount you would for a normal driver’s license. Therefore, it will cost you $33. You also need to have auto insurance if you are an undocumented driver.

Read More

Conclusion

An AB 60 can be very beneficial if you are an undocumented immigrant. So, make sure to have the proper documents, prepare for the tests and take the right steps to apply for your driver’s license.

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Frank Gogol

I’m a firm believer that information is the key to financial freedom. On the Stilt Blog, I write about the complex topics — like finance, immigration, and technology — to help immigrants make the most of their lives in the U.S. Our content and brand have been featured in Forbes, TechCrunch, VentureBeat, and more.

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