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Illinois TVDL is Replaced by a New Driver's License Program

Posted by Steven H. Fagan | Jul 04, 2024 | 0 Comments

Under a controversial Illinois law, undocumented immigrants have been able to obtain a driver's license called a Temprary Visitors Driver's License, this month a new Illinois law goes into effect eliminating the TVDL, but creating a new driver's license category valid for a four year period.

The TVDL was controversial because it confers a privilege upon undocumented immigrants that many believe is inappropriate, and there was a concern the program might be abused. In previous posts, we've explained that there is solid logic behind the move, as undocumented immigrants often drove anyways, could not be insured, and had little incentive to document their whereabouts and create a stable lifestyle. In practice the TVDL system dealt with neatly, promoting stability, requiring a minimum level of driving competence, providing a means of insuring motorists who would not otherwise be insurable, and creating a means of accountability in exchange for the privilege of licensed driving that others enjoy. Of course, this also comes with other collateral benefits to both Illinois citizens and undocumented immigrants. 

The year driver's license program will no doubt continue to be controversial for the same reasons, but it is likely to produce more stability and accountability, and provides undocumented immigrants a way to function in a culture that is highly centered around driving. 

About the Author

Steven H. Fagan

Steve Fagan earned his law degree from Chicago-Kent College of Law, is a member of the NCDD, NACDL, ISBA and a founding member of the DUIDLA. He is published and has taught CLE for lawyers on subjects such as sex offenses, DUI and criminal defense, focuses on trial work and Real Estate closings


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