Last week, Governor John Hickenlooper signed into law the Colorado Road and Community Safety Act, a bill that permits temporarily documented and undocumented noncitizen residents to obtain a Colorado driver’s license. The license issued under the law can only be used to drive in the state of Colorado, and cannot be used for federal identification, voting or public benefit purposes.
The purpose of the law is to allow state officers to identify motorists operating vehicles on Colorado roadways. The licenses will allow many people to get insured so that they may take responsibility for their actions on the road. It is estimated, in fact, that thousands of Colorado drivers will be able to be insured because of the law.
Currently, some immigrant Coloradans are unable to obtain a license or insurance, even though they drive on Colorado roadways.
In order to obtain a license, applicants are required to pass the driver safety tests and provide proof of Colorado residency, proof of filing a Colorado tax return, a federal taxpayer identification number and proof of identity provided by their country of origin.
The licenses will cost motorists $41, and once they will remain valid for three years. Colorado is not the only state to have passed such a law. Other states that have done so include Maryland, Utah, Washington, Illinois and New Mexico.
Accidents involving uninsured motorists can leave their victims in a bad spot financially, and with little recourse as uninsured motorists often have little to no assets. Those who are injured in an uninsured motorist accident should work with an attorney to determine what compensation may be available to them either through an insurance claim or a personal injury action.
Source: FowlerTribune.com, “Colorado roads to be safer with fewer uninsured motorists,” June 5, 2013.