Sunlit Water

September 8, 2009

Out Of State

Filed under: Personal — by teofilo @ 3:01 pm

I need to set up a local bank account, so today I went over to the nearest bank and attempted to do so.  They asked me for ID, so I gave them my New Mexico driver’s license.  No good, it turns out.  They need proof that I live here, which I don’t have yet.  So it looks like it’ll be a while until I have a local account, since getting a New Jersey license looks to be a bit of a pain.  It’s something I need to do anyway, though, to establish residency, so it’s not that big a deal.

Later, I went over to the local Rite-Aid to get some beer.  The clerk asked for my ID, and when she saw it she exclaimed “What brought you to New Jersey?!”  (School.  Around here, it’s always school.)  It was apparently the first time she’d seen a New Mexico license, so it really jumped out at her.

I have to say that I’m getting pretty tired of this sort of thing.  Establishing residency is a hassle, but I think it’ll be worth it.  I prefer to blend in.

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6 Comments »

  1. Not that you asked for advice, but in most states the DMV will accept an apartment lease or a postmarked envelope from your university as proof of residence. I’m not sure of the rules in NJ, but if you have to have two proofs, those two might do it. Otherwise you can have someone send you a snail-mail letter (postmarked envelope is legit) or just wait for your utility bills to come through, assuming those will be in your name.

    Comment by Witt — September 8, 2009 @ 10:12 pm |Reply

  2. I think I’m just going to have to wait for the utility bills. I looked at the DMV website, which has a helpful thing showing what documents you need to get a license. I’m also going to need my mom to send me my birth certificate or passport, but that’s no problem. I should be able to go in a week or two.

    Comment by teofilo — September 8, 2009 @ 10:21 pm |Reply

  3. I’m amused that I appear to have had an easier time getting a Canadian account this afternoon than you’ve had getting one in New Jersey. On the other hand, I showed a passport, student visa, gave a local address, and made a deposit of funds from the school’s financial aid office, so that’s quite a bit more info than you produced.

    Because of the whole immigration aspect, I’ve gotten numerous warnings (on information sheets and the like) about U.S. driver’s licenses not being considered valid I.D. up here for most purposes (including alcohol purchases).

    Comment by andrew — September 8, 2009 @ 10:57 pm |Reply

  4. The utility bill and school letter should also be plenty for getting a bank account. I know for certain that I got bank accounts in Ohio and here in New York without having a local license. But yes, the local license does put an end to the “Wow, you’re from where?” stuff. OTOH, they only ask either because they’re interested in your home state, or because they’re looking to make conversation with you. Being from a weird place is one way to meet people!

    Comment by A White Bear — September 9, 2009 @ 6:16 am |Reply

  5. AWB is a nicer and more trusting person than me. IME “Wow, you’re from where?” is often used as a low-tech way to suss out frauds. The person looking at the driver’s license may or may not know what a legit NM driver’s license looks like, but they have a decent shot at catching someone in a really lame lie or inability to say anything logical about their supposed home state.

    Comment by Witt — September 10, 2009 @ 6:32 pm |Reply

  6. These midwesterners, you know.

    Comment by teofilo — September 10, 2009 @ 11:50 pm |Reply


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