Tuesday, January 18, 2011

thank you, come again!

or: Who Knew?!
or: Third Time is NOT the Charm.
or: My Mostly Malicious Musings Minding the Maryland MVA.

as most of you who actually read my blog (all three of you) probably already know, my then-fiance and i bought a house. in Maryland. we closed on said house in July (said Mando) and i moved in in September. we got married in October and by November i had officially changed my last name and was really looking forward to finally having everything in my life be able to be tied down to a single home address. based on the MVA website, i gathered all the paperwork that i would need to get a MD drivers license - i could prove my identity, my marriage, my home address, and my citizenship in at least three different ways - and we woke up early one Saturday and headed to the MVA for the first time.

while we were there, we were in fact able to get me a new drivers license, complete with a blue crab and a picture that makes me look younger than most of the 16-yr olds who were there passing their drivers tests that morning. while we were there, i figured i would just ask what i would need in order to get my registration on my car transferred from PA to MD and get new plates. silly naieve me, i thought it would be a simple process... if i only knew.

the girl who gave me my license told me that she didnt really know what was involved, but that there was a form i needed to fill out, i would have to get my car inspected in MD and have my title with me, and that i would need to come back on a weekday during normal business hours when that half of the office was open.

so i went home and checked online to see what all i really needed and found out the same thing the nice girl had told me. as i filled out the form, i found out that i had a lien on my car (who knew ?!) and that i would need the MVA to send a request to the lienholder for them to send my title. so on a day that i was already taking a half day off work to go get my tire fixed (apparantly i ran over a nail... whoops!)  i took my newly inspected car (which i had just bought brand new a year earlier making this her THIRD inspection withing a YEAR), BACK to the MVA for the Second Time.

i was feeling pretty good about myself. i mean yeah, i didnt exactly have my title, but that wasnt my fault - i just had to ask the MVA to ask my lienholder to get it for me. but i had my form filled out, and my inspection certification, so you can imagine my surprise when i was informed that what i needed to do was to take the letter from the MVA, fax it to my lienholder, and then wait. and wait. and wait. until the MVA sent me a letter that says that they now have my title. and THEN they would be able to process my request. oh and bee tee dubs, that PA insurance that you have thats good through the end of the year? yeah thats no good here. you need to have MARYLAND insurance. blech. where was THAT on the website?


so i did what they told me to do. i called my insurance company. i called my hubband's insurance company. i got Maryland insurance. i faxed the letter to my lienholder. i waited. i got a letter from my lienholder saying that they had recieved my request and had sent my title to the MVA. and i waited. and waited. i forgot what i was waiting for. and almost died from waiting. and then i got a letter from the MVA saying that they had my title and i could come in WHENEVER I WANTED to apply for my new title/registration/tags. i WANTED to have this done MONTHS ago thankyouverymuch. sigh.

so i filled out the form AGAIN and i even remembered this time that i would need to have my Dad's signature on it as well, (since i snookered him into co-signing for my car loan) so since i was planning on going to the MVA first thing Monday morning i scanned the form into my computer on sunday night (yay for procrastination!) and emailed it to my dad so he could print it out, sign it, scan it into his computer, email it back to me so i could print it out and take it to the MVA first thing in the morning.

who knew that Monday was Martin Luther King Jr day?!

so i decided that i would go to the MVA for THE THIRD TIME first thing Tuesday morning. i had it all - the form, the signatures, the proof of who i am, the inspection report, the Maryland insurance, some other random forms and information, and my checkbook cause you just know that all this hassle is gonna cost a pretty penny too. yay for the government!

i was ready to head out the door at 7:30 to make it to the MVA at 8am sharp. i even had the forsight to start my car early to warm it up because the world outside was one big sheet of ice. yay for freezing rain! on a whim, i decided to just check the website one last time to make sure i had everything this time so that i would definately walk out of there with new plates, and the website told me that THEY DIDNT OPEN UNTIL 8:30! srsly?! yay for an extra half an hour wasted!


i drove through the ice and the rain. i got to the MVA at 8:27. i waited in line. my number was C2. i waited on the big metal bench through I1, A1, G1, G2, C1, B1, and probably a couple other COMPLETELY RANDOM combinations of letters and numbers until they were "now serving C.2. at station. 12." i handed the lady my form. i was feeling pretty good.

and then this happened:

Lady: is this a copy?
Me: its a scan.
Lady: i dont think we can accept this.
Me: seriously?
Lady: (asks lady in the next station) can we take a copy of a form?
Lady 2: no, they need to have original signatures.
Me: seriously?
Lady: (hands form back to me) i'm sorry you'll need to get original signatures on this.
Me: *headdesk*

i almost punched her. i cried. i am so sick of all of this. and i dont even want to think about what could possibly go wrong when i go back for a fourth time.


Rob L. said...

I despise the DMV with all that's within me, but I still don't think I've ever had that much trouble with anything in PA. Anyway, easy solution? Come to Korea where you don't need to own a car!

Abi said...

New York is also very I-don't-own-a-car friendly
also it are closer than Korea, in case that convinces you. ;)

Kiel said...

Yaaa ... I feel your pain, been through that circus with the MVA. I'm pretty sure they couldn't come up with a more complicated, frustrating, and time consuming process if they tried!! Best of luck on your fourth trip :)

Miss Brenda said...

Someone from Maryland should do something really nice for you for all this trouble. Like buy you a plane ticket to Wyoming.