There is no law that prevents any resident of Pennsylvania from purchasing, registering, and insuring a car with just a valid PA Photo ID. Even if your driver’s license is suspended or revoked you can still legally purchase a car and maintain insurance.
The requirements to purchase (title and register) your car, truck, or motorcycle, you will need to bring the following with you to the authorized agent (tag store or dealership) performing the transfer:
- A valid title for all of the vehicles you want to register in Pennsylvania, issued in your name, from your previous state; and
- Proof of Pennsylvania insurance, such as a valid insurance identification card, declaration page of an auto insurance policy, a copy of a valid auto insurance binder or a copy of an application for auto insurance to the Pennsylvania Assigned Risk Plan for all of the vehicles you will be registering in Pennsylvania. These documents must indicate both effective and expiration dates for the vehicles covered.
- A tracing of the vehicle identification number (VIN) or the verification of the VIN by an inspection mechanic or notary public at a dealership or issuing agent.
- Appropriate title, lien, registration fees and sales tax (if applicable). Make checks or money orders payable to the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania. Please do not send cash.
- If you are titling and registering a leased vehicle, the leasing company will also be required to completeForm MV-1L. NOTE: A Power of Attorney may be required from the leasing company.
PennDOT will only allow agents and dealerships to issue title and registration documents to customers who provide one of the following credentials for identification purposes:
- a valid Pennsylvania Photo Driver’s License
- a valid Pennsylvania Photo Identification Card
- a valid Pennsylvania Photo Exempt Driver’s License
- a valid Pennsylvania Photo Exempt Identification Card
- a valid U.S. Armed Forces Common Access Card
- Dependents of Armed Forces Personnel must provide a valid United States Uniformed Services Identification and Privilege Card (DD Form 1173)
As you can see from above, a valid PA driver’s license can be used, but it is not required to register or own a vehicle according to Pennsylvania law. You only need a valid Pennsylvania Photo ID that any resident of Pennsylvania can get along with proof of residency and a few dollars.
Just because it is legal to purchase a car in Pennsylvania with a suspended license, this does not mean you can drive this vehicle. You will need someone to drive the car off the lot and a licensed driver will need to operate the vehicle.
Most of the time this issue occurs where the suspended driver would like to purchase a car and have a driver operate the vehicle for them to continue working. Hiring a driver to shuttle you around when your are working through a license suspension can be a great option to prevent any more driving under suspension tickets or other issues as you try to get your license back!