September 9, 2011

Totem Cheesin'

Posted by meli on Friday, September 09, 2011 in , | No comments

This giant Totem Pole is outside the Racine County Court House. I don't know why, lol... seems kind of odd, right? Good thing odd is right up my alley, ha. I loved it; perfect photo op!

Ooh, what were we doing at the Court House? Losing my mother effing mind!
We went yesterday, which was Day Two of our DMV escapade. 

Lets start from the beginning, shall we?

Our current drivers licenses expired 90 days after release from the military, and since we're not up in Washington to just renew in person, we decided to just get Wisconsin licenses.  

The first day the issue was paperwork. We called a few weeks prior to see what we would need to prove residency, and they told us a utility bill, a bank statement, or a signed lease. Sooo, we waited until we had that signed lease, and thought we'd be good to go. Got there, and the guy again told us the paperwork we had was efficient, we got our number, and sat there for hours until we were called up. Only to be told by someone else that they don't accept a lease as proof of residency. No matter that not only did the lady on the phone tell us it would work, so did the guy signing us in and handing out numbers! Nice. We were told the best way to get an accurate list of acceptable documents is to go on their website. Apparently calling isn't suitable? Why the hell not? You'd think calling would be more accurate, wouldn't you? We've encountered too many times a website not being properly updated, so we usually prefer to call.

Anyway, our lease wasn't accepted. They told us that since we didn't have time to wait for a utility bill, and we'd need atleast 30 days established at a bank here (they don't have a Bank of America in Wisconsin! wth!) before they would accept a statement, that we could go into the Social Security office, change our address on file, and have them print off a correspondence letter for us. They would take that as proof of residency. Our old licenses would be proof of identity, and our military id's would work for proof of citizenship. It was the end of the business day, so we'd have to do all of that the next day.

So, Day Two... we got the Social Security letter, and when we went back to the dmv they threw up issue with our military id's being used to prove citizenship. Apparently they're not allowed to accept that anymore, and they hadn't yet updated their paperwork to reflect the changes (ummm, hello ... that's exactly why we call!!!) They would only accept birth certificates or passports, no exceptions. OMG! These people are driving me bonkers.

In the hustle and bustle during the packing process in SC... our folder of important documents (birth certificates, social security cards, etc) got packed, while the folder that had the photocopies in it was set aside. Of course the dmv wouldn't accept the photocopy, they needed an original or certified copy. So, ok, whatever. Nicks license would have to wait, but since I was born here, I could just swing by the court house and pick up a certified copy and be set.  We drove 35 minutes over to the Milwaukee courthouse to get a copy; only to sign in, fill out the paperwork, wait, and then have them look at my request form and say "Oh, you were born in Racine County? You need to go to Racine to pick up your records". Yea, duh... right? I totally wasn't thinking! It took us 40 minutes to get down to Racine, and another 45 to get back (HELLOOOOO Totem Pole, pictures! lol) ... we got back to the dmv 5 friggin minutes after they closed, and they wouldn't see us. GAW! Damn you, Totem Pole ... damn you!!!

So Day Three (today), shouldn't be a problem, right? I went alone this time. Tired as all hell of bring Nick back and forth from the hospital. I went in with every damn thing they wanted; I should have walked out with a valid drivers license, right? Nope! 

After getting another number, and waiting for a couple more hours, I was ALMOST through the process before the lady inputing my info into the computer turns and says "Oh honey, there's something in Washington that is holding you up. You're flagged, and I cannot issue you a license until you get that squared away. After you talk to them, give it atleast 48 hours to reflect in our system, and then come back".


So I called Washington... apparently I haven't had a valid license since 2007!!! What??! I guess they regularly check records with the social security administration to make sure name, date of birth, and social security number match in both systems. During one of those routine checks back in 2007, my social came back not matching (I hadn't yet legally changed my name to Paul [I just did that, reluctantly, within the past year], so my social security card said Piechocki, but my license already said Paul). They sent a letter about this situation, and the steps I need to take to fix the problems, but I never got it... which means I never responded, so they canceled my license. Never knew! Good thing I'm a good driver, right? Oye!

So now I have to wait for our things to be delivered so I can get my social security card and birth certificate to fax to Washington so they can fix my file in the system, and remove the flag (a process that I was told would take several weeks). 
    Sweet ... 


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