Registry of Motor Vehicles

Registry of Motor Vehicles (RMV)

Contact the Registry of Motor Vehicles directly (RMV website) with any questions you may have regarding driver’s licenses, application procedures, car registrations, etc.

Using a Foreign License in Massachusetts

The RMV in Massachusetts recognizes all foreign driver’s licenses if certain conditions are met:

  • Must be at least 16 years of age.
  • Must be in possession of a valid driver’s license when operating a motor vehicle in Massachusetts.
  • May operate a motor vehicle in Massachusetts of the same type in which licensed to operate in any other state or country.
  • If the foreign license is not in English or does not have an English translation, must have one of the following:
  • An alternative translation document that contains a photo and English translation that closely matches the information from an IDP
  • Must not be suspended or revoked.

How to Obtain a Massachusetts Driver’s License

Your immigration document must be valid for a stay of at least 12 months to be eligible.

Applicants over age 18 are eligible to apply for a driver’s license at any RMV office (directions to 116 Pleasant Street, Easthampton are available here).

Application Process:

  1. Start the process online here and print out the QR code to take to the RMV with your documents
  2. View the required documents here (they cannot be laminated)
    • Passport, visa, immigration document, and I-94
    • Proof of Residency: lease agreements, bank statements, utility bill, etc.
    • Social Security Card or denial notice*
  3. Take items from #1 and #2 to RMV to complete a Permit Exam and an eye exam
  4. Pass a Road Test at the RMV and receive your driver’s license in the mail within a few weeks.

*DENIAL NOTICE:  For those people not eligible for a Social Security Number, you must still APPLY for a Social Security Number and ask for a denial notice from Social Security Administration. The denial notice must be submitted to the Registry instead of the Social Security Number AND BE DATED WITHIN 30 DAYS OF SUBMISSION.

Purchasing a Car = Expensive Process

Must pay:

  • Cost of car plus sales tax (currently at 6.25%)
  • Fee for Car Registration, Title, and Car Inspection (annual cost)
  • Excise Tax (an annual tax based on the value of your car)
  • Car Insurance (mandatory in Massachusetts and quite expensive)