‘Driver’s license policies are similar for all applicants’


Whether it’s for the renewal of one’s driver’s license or brand new, all CNMI-issued driver’s licenses are valid for three years, according to the Bureau of Motor Vehicles.

Josalyn Cabrera, Bureau of Motor Vehicles driver license technician, clarified this in response to rumors about differing license policies for U.S. citizens and CW-1 holders or foreign workers.

She said the rumor is not true and that the BMV policy is the same for everyone.

“The policy is the same. Your driver’s license will still expire in three years on your birthday,” she said.

However, the requirement to renew or apply for a local driver’s license differs for CW-1 holders or foreign workers.

Foreign workers would need to provide their passport, a copy of their visa, if the visa is near expiration, a notice stating their visa is to be renewed or is approved for renewal, and the expired driver’s license.

“What we need from you is your previous CW or if you have something that states that you have a CW-1 and you have the receipt that you’ve sent a [renewal] out, that means you’re good to go to renew your license again,” she said.

The fee for a new license or renewal are the same for both U.S. citizens and foreign workers.

The renewal or brand-new license fee is $50. A penalty of $20 is implemented after 30 days of expiration.

According to Cabrera, the bureau has recently shifted to the Real ID System and is now issuing Real IDs.

Cabrera said that since the bureau has only started implementing this system early this month, it is still non-compliant, or in its test-run phase, so requirements, policies, and fees could change once the system is compliant.

There is still no set date as to when the system will be considered compliant.

These IDs, according to a previous interview with Department of Public Safety Commissioner Robert Guerrero, would be able to access all the records of the cardholder, including medical records and criminal records.

For now, Cabrera said, the bureau is still keeping the three-year license validity for all CNMI-issued license.

Kimberly Bautista | Reporter
Kimberly Albiso Bautista has covered a wide range of news beats, including the community, housing, crime, and more. She now covers sports for the Saipan Tribune. Contact her at kimberly_bautista@saipantribune.com.
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