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Driver License Agreement

The Driver License Agreement (DLA) is an interstate compact written by the Joint Executive Board of the Driver License Compact (DLC) and the Non-Resident Violator Compact (NRVC). The goal of the DLA is to require each state to honor licenses issued by other member states, to require each state to report traffic convictions to the licensing state, to prohibit a member state from confiscating an out-of-state driver's license or jailing an out of state driver for a minor violation, and to require each state to maintain a complete driver's history, including withdrawals and traffic convictions occurring in other states including non-DLA states.

When a DLA member state receives a report concerning a driver to whom it has issued a driver's license from a non-DLA member state, the member state is required to treat the report as if it came from a member state. As with the previous compacts such as the Interstate Driver's License Compact (DLC), the DLA requires a state to post all out of state traffic convictions to the driver's driving record. The member state must then apply its own laws to the out of state convictions. As with the previous compacts, the DLA allows other jurisdictions to access motor vehicle records, in accordance with the Drivers' Privacy Protection Act (DPPA), and to transfer the driver's history if the driver transfers his license.

The DLA has some changes from the NRVC. Unlike the NRVC, pursuant to the DLA, adverse action can be taken against a driver for not responding to violations such as equipment violations, registration violations, parking violations, and weight limit violations. Other changes from the NRVC include that in order for a driver to keep his license under the NRVC, he just had to respond to the citation by paying the fine. With the DLA, the driver must comply with any order from the out of state court. An example would be a driver from Arizona getting cited for tinted windows while traveling through Virginia, even though the tinted windows are legal back at home. The driver is ordered to fix the tint to meet Virginia law even though the driver left Virginia. Under the NRVC, to retain said license, the driver just pays the fine but with DLA, the driver must do what the court says including but not limited to paying a fine, but also fixing vehicle equipment, and/or community service.
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History

Work on the Driver License Agreement started in 1994/1995 by the Driver License Compact and the Non-Resident Violator Compact Joint Executive Board with the idea to combine and improve the existing compacts and make them enforceable. Around the same period, Congress passed the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA) and the Joint Executive Board decided jurisdictions in Mexico and Canada could join.

The Federal Government funded the Joint Executive Board to write the new Driver License Agreement. In 2000, the agreement was ratified by the U.S. states with 2 votes against. After the terrorist attacks on September 11, 2001, the Joint Executive Board strengthened driver license security provisions in the DLA, and the revised DLA was again ratified by the U.S. states with some votes against. The information on who voted against the DLA is considered confidential and proprietary information by the AAMVA.

The first state joining the DLA was Connecticut, in January, 2002. However, the the DLA was amended in 2004.

Privacy Issues

Sharing of state driver databases with other states and foreign countries not following the Drivers Privacy Protection Act places drivers' private information at risk.

DLA members are required to make their databases available to all jurisdictions placing the security of drivers' private information at risk.

No due process rights for receiving a traffic ticket or major violation such as DUI while driving out of the country but yet, the ticket when reported to the home jurisdiction can affect retention of a driver's license and cause insurance rates to increase.

Other countries such as members of the European Union can join the DLA.