New to New Hampshire
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New Hampshire is a special state with rich history and unique character. One of the original 13 colonies, New Hampshire is very proud of its role in the revolutionary war. In fact, the state motto, "Live Free or Die," was coined by General John Stark, a revolutionary freedom fighter.
Today, the first presidential primary is still held in New Hampshire. The government agencies you encounter reflect this spirit, as you'll see in your interactions with the Department of Safety (DOS) and the Division of Motor Vehicles.
For example, New Hampshire law does not require motorcycle helmets for anyone 18 years old or older. Automobile insurance is also optional, unless, of course, you have an accident or traffic violation and the DOS orders you to purchase auto insurance.
In New Hampshire, the old time Yankee customs have influenced the attitudes and shaped the culture so that the systems we have today reflect this very independent philosophy.
The geography and landscape of New Hampshire are spectacular. In one small state, we are fortunate to have mountains, lakes, streams, and a beautiful Atlantic coastline. Outdoor recreation is popular as is art and history. The rural parts of the state boast covered bridges and wildlife while the urban centers are growing communities.
If you have recently moved to New Hampshire, consider yourself in for a special experience. Regularly voted as one of the best states to live and work in, New Hampshire residents enjoy a great quality of life.
The Department of Safety oversees many bureaus, divisions and departments, including the DMV.
You will become very familiar with your local government―the town clerk who registers your car and licenses your dogs will probably come to know you by face and name. At the state level, however, you should be prepared to prove three things each time you go to Concord or a DMV substation:
- Proof of age―more important for young drivers.
- Proof of identification.
- Proof of residency.
As a new resident in New Hampshire, you have 60 days after your move to obtain a New Hampshire driver license and 60 days to register your vehicle.
In order to register, you'll need to take the title and proof of residency to your town or city office; however, if the vehicle is leased, you'll need to take the lease agreement, lienholder information, and out-of-state registration, as well.
As a new resident, you may need to consider your own driving skills. For even the most experienced driver, New Hampshire winters are challenging. Review the Driver's Manual and investigate driver education classes as a great way to focus your attention on safe driving in New Hampshire.