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California Makes It Illegal To Sell DMV Appointments

SACRAMENTO (CBS13) - Selling appointments at the California DMV is now against the law.

Governor Gavin Newsom signed Assembly Bill 317 Monday, making it an infraction for companies to sell appointments to people. Appointments made through the Department of Motor Vehicles are free and can be made 90 days in advance.

However, due to the REAL ID requirement, trying to make an appointment can be a challenge and wait times at the DMV can get long.

At least one company, YoGov, started offering a service to help people get an appointment. Customers pay $25 and, as the website claims, employees at Yogov are "constantly hitting refresh on DMV's website to look for dropped appointments in order to get the customer an earlier appointment." Driving schools also book blocks of appointments and then sell them to students.

Under AB 317, those caught selling or offering to sell appointments would be charged with an infraction. An original version of the legislation would have made it a misdemeanor with a fine up to $2,500.

The Legislature did question whether businesses like YoGov are "innovative businesses helping citizens get better access to government or a predatory business taking advantage of DMV customers by giving those with the ability to pay easier access to a basic government service.

Wait times at DMV offices statewide are down to an average of 20 minutes for people with appointments; however, getting an appointment at a field office can be a challenge.

As of October 9, 2019, the first available appointment at a local DMV field office is:

  • Auburn- 12/26
  • Carmichael- 1/7
  • Davis- 1/3
  • Fairfield- 12/31
  • Folsom- 1/3
  • Grass Valley- 12/23
  • Jackson- 1/7
  • Lodi- 1/2
  • Manteca- 12/19
  • Modesto- 12/18
  • Placerville- no appointments available
  • Rocklin- 1/6
  • Roseville- 12/30
  • Sacramento- 1/3
  • Sacramento South- 1/3
  • Stockton- 12/17
  • Tracy- 1/2
  • Turlock- 12/19
  • Vacaville- 1/6
  • Willows- 10/22
  • Woodland- 1/3
  • Yuba City- 10/31

Allstate wrote in support of the bill, "the selling of appointments disadvantages low-income customers, customers without access to a computer and may contribute to the long lines and inefficiencies that currently plague the DMV."

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