Frequently Asked Questions

Q: What is the Federal Driver Privacy Protection Act?

A: The Federal Driver Privacy Protection Act(18 U.S.C. §2721, et seq) is a federal law that regulates the disclosure and use of certain information from motor vehicle records.

It restricts to whom and for what purposes certain information can be disclosed.

It also regulates how the recipients of information can use or redisclose that information.

 

Q: What information does the Federal Driver Privacy Protection Act restrict?

A: The Federal Driver Privacy Protection Act restricts the disclosure of personal information, as defined in 18 U.S.C §2725. For more information on the definition of "personal information," please see the Federal Driver Privacy Protection Act section.

 

Q: Is all information maintained by the Registry of Motor Vehicles restricted?

A: No. The Federal Driver Privacy Protection Act only restricts personal information. Information on vehicular accidents, driving violations, and driver's status is not considered personal information. Also, information that does not pertain to an individual would not be considered personal information.

 

Q: Who can obtain personal information from the Registry of Motor Vehicles?

A: The categories of permissible users of personal information can be found in the Permitted Users and Uses of Personal Information section.*

 

*The Registry of Motor Vehicles may require the submission of certain documentation to establish permissible user or use status.

 

Q: If I qualify to obtain personal information, may I redisclose it to others?

A: The Federal Driver Privacy Protection Act places restrictions on an individual's ability to share personal information from Registry of Motor Vehicles records with others. You may redisclose the information only to another permitted user, for a permitted use. In addition, you must keep a record of the disclosure, identifying each person or entity that receives the information and the permitted purpose for which it was used. Federal law requires that these records be retained for a period of five years.

 

Q: What if I redisclose personal information to an individual who does not have a permissible use?

A: You will be subject to criminal fines and civil liabilities for knowingly violating the provisions and requirements of the Federal Driver Privacy Protection Act (18 U.S.C. §2721, et seq.).

 

Q: If I need personal information from Registry of Motor Vehicles records, what do I do?

A: The Registry of Motor Vehicles has established certain procedures for determining if a requestor qualifies to receive personal information. First, you should carefully review the Permitted Users and Uses of Personal Information section. If you believe you qualify, and you need information about a specific individual,* you should complete a Request for Personal Information Form.

 

* Agencies that believe they qualify to receive groups of records, rather than records on specific individuals, should contact the Production Control Department for further information. Agencies that believe they qualify to receive online access to records should refer to the Obtaining Access For Non-Registry of Motor Vehicles Users section.

 

Q: What if an individual misrepresents to the Registry of Motor Vehicles the reason(s) for requesting and attempting to obtain personal information?

A: The individual(s) will be subject to criminal fines and civil liabilities for knowingly violating the provisions and requirements of the Federal Driver Privacy Protection Act. It is unlawful for any individual to knowingly obtain personal information for a use not allowed by the Federal Driver Privacy Protection Act, or to make any false representations to obtain personal information (18 U.S.C. §2721, et seq.).