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Reciprocity laws

San Diego, CA |
Attorney answers 4


What do you mean by your record in Washington? Is there diferrent records when you move from state to state?


If you are talking about your drivng record, the answer is Washington will probably see it and can take action against your privilege to drive in Washington, if you have a Washington license. California and Washington are part of the interstate compact.


California DUI arrest? Do you have an out-of-state license the officer did not take? California DMV Order of Suspension or Temporary License issued to you? Here's what can happen.

The Interstate Compact is a multi-state agreement between participating states to share information and reciprocate. It covers California license suspension actions and California DUI convictions.

If a resident of one state or holder of an out-of-state license has his or her driving privilege suspended or gets convicted of DUI in another state (e.g. California), the driver's home state can be notified. Your home state may honor and reciprocate, e.g. take action to suspend the driver's license of its resident.

Even if you do not have a California driver's license and even if you do not plan to ever drive again in California, it is critical to know that a suspension of your driving privilege in California may result in a suspension of your home state driver's license. No matter where you live, you probably want to avoid, if not at least minimize, any driver's license suspension action by the California Department of Motor Vehicle (DMV).

You probably need to hire a California DUI & DMV Specialist.

The list of states, below, indicates whether a given state belongs to the Interstate Driver's License Compact, and if so, the year they joined. Wisconsin, Tennessee, Georgia, Massachusetts, and Michigan are all Non-compact states and should not share DUI conviction information.

If you have any specific questions about how the Interstate Compact Act may apply in your case, you may want to contact a DUI/DMV specialist in your state. States vary in their respective actions.

For instance, Michigan will sanction a Michigan resident for a non-Michigan conviction. While Michigan has not enacted legislation specifically adopting the Compact; it has done so administratively and statutorily by allowing the Secretary of State to consider out of state convictions.

NRVC - This is a list of the Non Resident Violator Compact... A list of states that communicate with one another if you get a ticket out of your home state.
DLC - This is a list of states that belong to the Driver License Compact. An agreement between these states basically says you have only ONE drivers license record.

Washington October 1993 Washington 1963


Are you referring to a criminal record or a driving record?

Driving record: California and Washington both belong to the interstate compact and the Department of Motor Vehicles in each state will share and see the conviction with each other. It is possible that Washington may take action against you driving privilege based on any conviction in California.

Criminal record: Any conviction in California will likely be viewable in Washington if you are charged with a DUI in that state in the future and they may be able to use a California conviction against you to enhance any future charges or convictions for DUI.

Example: If the situation were reversed and you had a WA DUI and then got arrested for DUI in CA the CA DMV would use the WA conviction, if within the last 10 years, to increase any suspension of your driving privilege and the District Attorney prosecuting your CA case may try to prove that the WA conviction meets the elements of an offense in CA and therefore can be used as a prior offense to enhance your charge and punishment.

John Stanko