Driver’s License Interstate Compact
A driver arrested on suspicion of Driving Under the Influence (DUI) or Driving While Intoxicated (DWI) in California who is licensed in another state, faces unique challenges because of the Interstate Driver’s License Compact (IDLC).
The IDLC is an agreement by 45 states to share information about driving-related arrests and convictions. Wisconsin, Tennessee, Georgia, Massachusetts, and Michigan are the only state that are not part of the IDLC. The other 45 states have agreed to notify one another when a driver is arrested or convicted of DUI / DWI. This means that an individual arrested for drunk-driving in California may face a suspended license and/or a fine in the state that issued the driver’s license.
Some states are completely reciprocal, meaning that if California suspends a driver’s license for four months, the licensing state will do the same. Other states will only recognize or take action after being notified of a DUI / DWI court conviction rather than a DMV action.
Among the states that will only act upon a court conviction, some will only take action if the burden of obtaining a criminal conviction in the other state is equal to the home state. Some states may add additional penalties, but some will impose fewer.