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Forced to change your state residency?

Tirekicker

Tooth Sleuth
Army
7+ Year Member
Mar 29, 2011
173
3
"Way up North"
  1. Dentist
    Hey guys,

    So I'm moving down to California in June to attend Western, but I intend on keeping my Alaska residency. Because I will be full time student (not paying in-state tuition), Alaska allows me to retain my Alaska driver's license and vehicle registration. Will there be any hitches with that in CA? Am I going to be forced to get a CA driver's license and vehicle registration.

    From looking at the CA DMV website, it doesn't appear that CA has a student exemption. However, it also says that "Any person entering California following discharge from the armed forces of the United States (which I am) is exempted from registration of passenger vehicles and trailer coaches provided the vehicles have out-of-state plates and registration. Registration becomes due when you accept gainful employment in California or become a California resident and must be paid within 20 days following that date to avoid penalties."

    Unfortunately, the website defines a resident as "any person who manifests an intent to live or be located in this state on more than a temporary or transient basis. Presence in the state for six months or more in any 12-month period gives rise to a rebuttable presumption of residency....Renting or leasing a home for use as a residence... [is] evidence of residency for purposes of vehicle registration." Seriously!?! I can't even rent an apartment? I think they have me pinned with that one.

    I'm an Alaskan and I will always be an Alaskan. Am I going to be forced to change my residency? Do any of you (especially California students) have any experience with this? Any help would be appreciated.
     
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    Vigilante

    Full Member
    5+ Year Member
    Jul 21, 2011
    138
    1
    1. Dental Student
      I'm a FL resident going to private school in CA. I don't know if I'm just incredibly unlucky, but I got pulled over for having a FL plate and was given a ticket that was only dropped if I registered my car in CA. And all this happened the month after I re-registered my car in FL. Anyway, I registered b/c it was cheaper than the ticket, never even put the plate on my car, and kept my FL registration for the next 3 years with the plan of lying about where I live if I ever actually get pulled over for it again. The same situation happened to my sister when she lived out here (but as she went to a state school, she had to register for tuition purposes eventually anyway). I guess the moral of my story is, be aware that you are supposed to register your car as a student...you don't have to get a new drivers license or anything else, but they want your money for the car registration. So, if you ever get pulled over for anything, just say your visiting the state to cover yourself.
       

      Bereno

      Smoking Monkey
      10+ Year Member
      Apr 15, 2011
      2,014
      574
      Washington
        I'm a FL resident going to private school in CA. I don't know if I'm just incredibly unlucky, but I got pulled over for having a FL plate and was given a ticket that was only dropped if I registered my car in CA. And all this happened the month after I re-registered my car in FL. Anyway, I registered b/c it was cheaper than the ticket, never even put the plate on my car, and kept my FL registration for the next 3 years with the plan of lying about where I live if I ever actually get pulled over for it again. The same situation happened to my sister when she lived out here (but as she went to a state school, she had to register for tuition purposes eventually anyway). I guess the moral of my story is, be aware that you are supposed to register your car as a student...you don't have to get a new drivers license or anything else, but they want your money for the car registration. So, if you ever get pulled over for anything, just say your visiting the state to cover yourself.

        Really?! So I cannot legally drive my WA registered car in CA??
         

        NOLAdentist2016

        Full Member
        Aug 28, 2011
        223
        0
        1. Dental Student
          I've been doing this for awhile now to save on insurance and registration. It's it 100% legal, probably not. But the only way you'll ever run into trouble is if you have a problem. Things like lots of parking tickets, an accident, you need a residential parking permit, etc. Other than that, no one really cares. If they do, I think in most states that laws are rather vague and flexible for OOS students. And if you get pulled over by a cop and have problems there, just say you're on vacation. Simple as that.
           

          Vigilante

          Full Member
          5+ Year Member
          Jul 21, 2011
          138
          1
          1. Dental Student
            In every other state in the country, I agree, car registration for OOS students isn't a big deal...but CA doesn't like to work like every other state. Just FYI, I wasn't pulled over for doing anything. The cop just noticed that I had a FL plate and stopped me. I was driving right next to school and was wearing my school scrubs, and he asked me if I was a student. I had no clue OOS students in CA were supposed to change their registrations, seeing as that's not the case anywhere else, so I didn't even think about it and fell right into his trap. Anyway, I learned my lesson and know now to lie, and it hasn't stopped me from cruising around with my FL plate, but it did cost me about $600.

            To the OP, just be wiser than me and lie! Say you're just visiting, or whatever else you think of, but don't admit to being a current student in CA. And if you feel uncomfortable lying, the worst case scenario is you'll have to register your car, but you won't have to change driver's licenses or do anything else that affects your AK residency.
             

            Tirekicker

            Tooth Sleuth
            Army
            7+ Year Member
            Mar 29, 2011
            173
            3
            "Way up North"
            1. Dentist
              I shouldn't have to lie. I'm not employed in the state and I'm not on welfare. California's students are welcome to come to school in Alaska and use our roads and services without having to change their residency. I guess California's state government is so broke, they need to squeeze every dollar they can out of any poor sucker going to school there. I feel like I'm leaving America and moving to a foreign country.
               

              Shnurek

              Membership Revoked
              Removed
              10+ Year Member
              Apr 10, 2010
              2,335
              9
              NYC
              1. Optometry Student
                Don't even get me started...

                Places like Cali and NYC are so liberalized out that they have many unliberal laws (ironically). You really can't enjoy yourself or have as much freedom as in other places. Example: In Texas you can drive on the beach, drink beer on the beach but in a "liberal" place like Los Angeles, good luck trying to do that. Oh, and don't even get me started on the taxes, cost of living and personalities of the people in these types of places. My advice: only go there if you have to. That is my situation.
                 
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