Franklin Countys First News

State extends driver licenses, permits during emergency

AUGUSTA - Secretary of State Matthew Dunlap announced today that many credentials issued by the Bureau of Motor Vehicles that expire within the current state emergency period will be extended.

The Office of Gov. Janet Mills, by executive order issued Monday, March 23, extended a waiver for all driver’s licenses, driver permits, State identification cards, commercial driver licenses, dealer licenses, salvage motor vehicle recycler licenses, driver/rider school licenses and instructor licenses that expire during the period of emergency, which began March 15, 2020.

Additionally, driver license vision test requirements are waived during this period, which allows many driver license and State ID holders to use the online renewal service.

Mills’ executive order also suspends registration requirements for vehicles and trailers after transfer of title or ownership. This action will allow private sales to continue during the BMV closure, as staff are not available to process new registrations.

Dunlap closed the Bureau of Motor Vehicles on March 17, 2020. Waivers will expire within 30 days after the end of the emergency period, per the executive order, and the Bureau of Motor Vehicles will process transactions upon reopening.

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13 Responses »

  1. what about road tests for permit holders . so they can go to work. ?????????

  2. How about extensions on car registration renewals, and excise tax?

  3. While someone answers the first two questions maybe they can ask the office of unemployment why in the middle of all this are they only open from 8am to noon and peoples claim hearings aren’t until mid May ? Seems that if people are forced not to work the unemployment would actually e available to them, but that’s government for ya !!

  4. Diane you can do that online

  5. Awwww,
    yes thats the good old State of Maine for you. Website has crashed multiple times, phone lines are saturated, and Mills didn't have the forethought to keep the office open for a full day. Amazing

  6. Diane kruchkow the state has already extended those things along with motor vehicle inspections to 30 days past the state of emergency ending.

  7. The State of Maine's prudent reserves were set aside for situations like the crisis Maine's
    citizens are experiencing today. Taxpayer's money to be used for the greatest number of folks to be served. The working taxpaying citzens Maine depends on to continue filling the coffers. This financial principle appears to escape our fearful leaders. Now we pay a larger price for the rapid and frivolous spending.

  8. Diane, I know this has already been answered but it is also in the send ot last paragraph. "Mills’ executive order also suspends registration requirements for vehicles and trailers after transfer of title or ownership. This action will allow private sales to continue during the BMV closure, as staff are not available to process new registrations."

    Tyler and Awww, where do you get this stuff? I wonder if either of you have actually tried to use the online system or of you're just complaining to be partisan in an emergency situation or becasue you heard someone on the radio complaining and making it partisan? Both BMV and Unemployment sites are up and running and assuming that you have all this time to complain online I also assume you have 5 min to do basic research. Yes, with the massive volume of claims it does take a few days to process. My wife just found out yesterday she is out of work for the next month due to Covid 19 closures and was able to apply for unemployment online in less than 10 min. This morning her claim was accepted and they responded with an amount and timeline. Any lag in the system is retroactive. Please only share factual information in a time of National Emergency. We don't need trouble makers causing panic and hate just for personal gains.

  9. Sam I have first hand knowledge because my wife is going through it right now. She has applied online and was told her “hearing” for eligibility will be May 15th. She has called in to see why a d it is on the answering service that their hours are from 8am to noon. Maybe instead of ridiculing people that have facts you might first investigate these things to not look foolish for accusing people for being partisan!!! I didn’t vote for Mills because of my family’s dealings with her in the past. I will say I do appreciate some of the things she has done only since this hysteria hit our state.

  10. "Please only share factual information in a time of National Emergency. We don't need trouble makers causing panic and hate just for personal gains." -- So true. People who are bored often cause trouble and rarely have much worth listening to or reading, as it were.

  11. I just won a very significant prize on a scratch ticket but I have to claim the prize by mail. Oh well.

  12. Okay, Awww. Good luck with your wife's claim but I still think you just need to be patient and calm down. Yes, there's a backlog of claims because the DOL was hit with over 20K claims in less than a week. The average is about 600 claims a week. They had to move everyone who can process claims off the phone to process claims. Listen to March 25th, Maine Calling: Impacts of COVID-19: Maine's Economic Crisis & Statewide Help for Businesses and Workers. You can hear for yourself from the DOL commissioner, Laura Fortman, what the process is to make sure your claim is processed and how long it should take. She also explains the immediate changes that took place and how they have had to move mountains to deal with it. So again, stay calm and be patient. You will get your cake. Calling is probably not the best way to gauge the work that's being done. Sounds like they had to pull people from other places to answer calls. Because most of the people answering are not properly trained staff they can't even take claims on the phone. Your wife will be retroactively paid if her claim is legit. And, it's really hard not to think you are angry or being passive aggressive. The frequency that you comment and seem to talk down to everyone, even in the most mundane articles, is obvious to any avid reader. As soon as anyone calls you out on it you double down with more aggressive and defensive responses. So, what ever to feeling superior. This public notice was about driver licenses and registrations anyway, I forfeit, you win. Cheers.

  13. Permit holders are likely out of luck for now. There is no simple way to safely put an employee in the car to administer the road test. If this drags on for too long, they will likely figure it out, but I have not heard anything yet.

    The Unemployment system is swamped, but they are hard at work and they will catch up. This crash saw more claims in one WEEK than were filed during the worst MONTH of the 2009 recession. Usually, a downturn starts slowly and ramps up, but this happened very quickly - just as employees were needing to figure out how to work from home.

    The phone lines are open in the morning and then those workers turn to processing claims in the afternoon. There are only so many employees, and they are doing all that they can; there are simply too many calls, but they will catch up. Please be patient with these workers who are being asked to do more than ever - often at their kitchen tables with their youngsters demanding videos, crackers, and grape juice.

    Some of the scheduled hearings are ridiculously far out. I am sure that they are aware of this. You will get the benefits to which you are entitled as long as you continue to do your part. If you are not able to file and you cannot find an answer online, reach out to your state representative or senator and let them know you're stuck. PLEASE keep track of when you filed, when you were laid off, and any hours/earnings you have had, if you're not able to get the system to accept your claim. Your detailed notes could save you a lot of aggravation later.

    Remember, we're all in this together. We're all stressed, sad, and scared - but we're also totally capable of riding it out. There is help out there if you need help to get your basic needs met, and the hiccups we're dealing with now will smooth out. Being impatient or unkind to our fellows is not going to make anything better, and it makes everyone feel worse. Stay strong, stay kind, and #stayhome.