International Driver’s Permits

Spring 2013 CSANews Issue 86  |   Posted date : May 01, 2013.Back to list

Bird talk - Le Jaseur
Dear Bird Talk,

We are currently at our winter location which is in Florida, USA. We have been alarmed to hear that from Jan 1, 2013, we are required to have an international driver’s permit, which we don't have. We are likely to be booked as driving without a licence if we are stopped for ANY traffic offence. Please comment urgently. What should we do (apart from driving safely within the speed limits)?

Richard E.
Beaconsfield, QC

AND

How utterly stupid can these people be? And how are those of us who have been here all winter supposed to get this useless piece of paper from the CAA without breaking the law by driving back north through the warm, but screwed-up, state of Florida. What plan does the CSA have to put some sort of common sense into the heads of the Florida legislature from the governor on down to the lowly clerks and get this law rescinded? This idiotic law has just lost their state millions of $$ and hundreds of jobs to those other southern states with some intelligence in their government offices. Unbelievable!!!!

J. Clark
Wasaga Beach, ON

Response:
Ed: While the CAA was busy selling international driver’s permits, CSA was working to solve the situation with the Florida government. We obtained direct contact with the governor’s office within six hours of hearing about the problem, and received their immediate agreement to not enforce the law anywhere in Florida until we could formally resolve the issue. The repeal of this “unintended” law was the first bill that Governor Rick Scott signed after the legislature resumed in March. The law was repealed by the Florida legislature 166-0 and by the Florida senate 36-0. No international driver’s permit (IDP) is required to drive in Florida.

A few news stories stated that some people had been charged, perhaps one of those “half-truths,” but we have been unable to find even one. The bill was rescinded retroactively to the original date on which it was passed so, if you had a problem, CSA can fix it; simply call us.

P.S. CAA has indicated that they will refund any IDPs that were purchased by snowbirds in error. Good for them!

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