Florida Requires Canadian Licenses to be Translated

April 21, 2013

By Ofer Tirosh


Florida Requires Canadian Licenses to be Translated – What!?


I’m sure we’ve all seen some of the silly US laws that pass around the internet from time to time. But here’s a new Florida law that has some people wondering.

The new Florida law that went into effect on January 1st requires all foreign drivers to carry an international license.  The Florida Department of Highway Safety and Motor Vehicles states, ““An International Driving Permit (IDP) is a document that translates your existing driver license information into 10 languages. The permit is valid for up to one year from the date of issuance and must be accompanied by a valid driver license at all times. The International Driving Permit is issued in accordance with the United Nations Convention in International Road Traffic (1949 Geneva), which encompassed more than 100 countries.”

In theory this sounds like a good idea, because it would help police officers decipher licenses in different languages. But what about the three million English-speaking Canadians who visit Florida every year? Or people from Great Britain or Australia who also speak English? What does this new law mean for them? It could mean a big headache. Maybe next time, before a law is passed, it should be more specific about who it applies to. 

The full story on the new Florida translation law can be found here; http://fullcomment.nationalpost.com/2013/02/14/kelly-mcparland-florida-requires-translation-for-licences-written-in-canadian/



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