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  International Drivers License Scams  

      A DRIVER'S LICENSE that can never be suspended or revoked? That's what some marketers of Web sites are offering, and if it sounds too good to be true, it is.
      What these ads claim is that - for somewhere between $65 and $350-you can get an international driver's license (IDL) or an international driving permit (IDP), which can be used in place of a state-issued driver's license.
      Despite marketers' claims, these documents:
      • do not authorize legal driving in the U.S., even for people who don't have state-issued licenses or whose state-issued license has been suspended or revoked;
      • can not be used to avoid points or fines affecting stateissued driver's licenses; and
      • can not be used as an official photo ID in the U.S. According to the Federal Trade Commission (FTC), if you're a U.S. resident, and you're caught using an IDP in place of a valid, state-issued driver's license, the consequences can be severe.
      The people advertising them are not authorized to sell them. They're peddling similar-looking but unofficial and unauthorized documents.
      An International Driving Permit will not help you to avoid paying for traffic tickets, keep points off your driving record, establish a new identify, or get you into bars if you're underage.
      What is an IDP?
      An IDP is simply a translation of your state-issued license for when you drive in some foreign countries. If you are a U.S. resident, an IDP is useless within America's borders. What's more, only two organizations are authorized to issue IDPs-the American Automobile Association and the American Automobile Touring Alliance-and they each charge $10.
      An IDP is not a "new" driver's license. You must already hold a valid driver's license to obtain one, and an IDP is used in conjunction with (not in place of) your existing license.
      To learn more about driver's license requirements, contact the state department of motor vehicles.
      If you've been scammed by a seller of bogus IDLs or IDPs, file a complaint with the FTC at

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