Center on Conscience & War
State Regulations on Draft Registration
Selective Service Registration

State Regulations on Draft Registration

As many people know from the literature in their local U.S. Post Office, every male, with a few exceptions (contact CCW if you want more info), living in the United States is required to register with Selective Service between ages 18 and 26. Many probably perceive that it's up to them whether they actually register. But, in too many cases, this is not true. If one applies for a driver's license in certain states, that automatically registers one for the Draft, in many cases unwittingly.

What if a conscientious objector is applying for a driver's license? There is no place in the application to declare one's convictions. On most applications, there is no way to "opt out" of registration for the Draft. If someone is a total objector to registration for a system of war, then they are denied their right to travel unless they violate their convictions. As a firm opponent of all forms of conscription and a defender of the rights of conscientious objectors, CCW believes the Selective Service system is fundamentally unjust and is a violation of fundamental religious freedom. It also maintains surveillance over Selective Service policies and other policies that relate both to the Draft and conscientious objection. CCW staff have compiled provisions of state statutes that pertain to driver's license application and Selective Service registration.

Summary of state laws that encourage or compel registration with Selective Service

States and territories that have enacted and implemented legislation linking driver’s licenses and registration with the SSS: Alabama, Arizona, Arkansas, Colorado, Connecticut, Delaware, Florida, Georgia, Hawaii, Idaho, Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Kansas, Kentucky, Louisiana, Maine, Michigan, Minnesota, Mississippi, Missouri, Montana, Nevada, New Hampshire, New Mexico, New York, North Carolina, Ohio, Oklahoma, Rhode Island, South Carolina, South Dakota, Tennessee, Texas, Utah, Virginia, Washington, West Virginia, Wisconsin, Guam, the Commonwealth of the Northern Mariana Islands, Puerto Rico, the Virgin Islands, and the District of Columbia.

States that have enacted and implemented legislation tying registration with SSS to state benefits but not to driver’s licenses: Alaska, California, Massachusetts, New Jersey, and North Dakota.

States that have not currently passed legislation linking benefits to registration: Nebraska, Oregon, Pennsylvania, Vermont, and Wyoming.

Maryland enacted driver’s license legislation in 2002, but has not yet implemented it.

A complete breakdown of states that have enacted legislation in regards to SSS registration can be found below.

Click on the state names for commentary on that particular state's regulations.

State Driver’s License Linked to Registration? Registration Linked to Access to Higher Education? Registration Required for State Employment? When was Legislation Enacted?
Alabama Yes, must be registered to receive license Yes, must be registered to enroll in a state funded institution of higher education Yes, must be registered for state employment or promotion Employment and education– January 1, 1992  / Driver’s license– May 17, 2001
Alaska No Yes, must be registered to receive state financial aid Yes,  must be registered for state employment  
Arizona Yes, must be registered to receive license Yes, must be registered to receive state financial aid Yes, must be registered for state employment 2003
Arkansas Yes, must be registered to receive license or identification card Yes, must be registered to receive state financial aid, loans, or acceptance into a state funded institution of higher education Yes, must be registered for state employment Education– 1989 / Employment– 1997 / Driver’s license– January 1, 2002
California No Yes, must be registered to receive state financial aid No 1997
Colorado Yes, must be registered to receive license, permit, or identification card

Yes, must be registered to enroll in a state funded institution of higher education; males are required to submit a statement of compliance upon enrollment

No Driver’s license– August 8, 2002 / Education– 1987
Connecticut Yes, must be registered to receive license, permit,  or identification card No No 1-Jul-13
Delaware Yes, must be registered to receive license, permit or identification card Yes, must be registered to receive state financial aid Yes, must be registered for state employment Employment and education– 1986 / Driver’s license– August 4, 2000
District of Columbia Yes, may register when applying for a license, permit, or identification card No No 2001
Florida Yes, must be registered to receive license, permit, or identification card No Yes, must be registered for state employment or promotion Employment– 1988 / Driver’s license– July 1, 2001
Georgia Yes, must be registered to receive license, permit or identification card Yes, must be registered to receive state financial aid Yes, , must be registered for state employment Education– 1986 / Employment– 1998 / Driver’s license– July 1, 2001
Guam Yes, may register when applying for a license, permit, or identification card No No 1-Sep-04
Hawaii Yes, must be registered to receive license or permit No No 1-Jan-02
Idaho Yes, applicants for a license, permit, or identification card may register with the SSS Yes, must be registered to receive state financial aid or enroll in state funded institutions of higher education Yes, must be registered for state employment Employment and Education– March 26, 1999 / Driver’s license– July 1, 2002
Illinois Yes, must be registered to receive license or permit Yes, must be registered to receive state financial aid Yes, must be registered for state employment Education– 1984 / Employment– 1989 / Driver’s license– January 1, 2002
Indiana Yes, applicants for a license may 
register with the SSS
No No 25-Apr-07
Iowa Yes, may register when applying for a license or identification card No No 1-Jul-03
Kansas Yes, must be registered to receive license No No 1-Jul-03
Kentucky Yes, eligible men may register when they apply for a license, permit, or identification card.  If the individual refuses, the state may forward that information to the SSS No  No 1-Jul-03
Louisiana Yes, must be registered to receive license, permit, or identification card Yes, must be registered to enroll in state funded institution of higher education Yes, must be registered for state employment Education– 1985 / Employment– 1999 / Driver’s license– January 1, 2002
Maine Yes, applicants for a license or identification card may register with the SSS Yes, must be registered to receive state financial aid No Education– 1987 / Driver’s license– passed without governor’s signature on May 18, 2011
Maryland

Passed legislation but never implemented because it was conditioned on the receipt of special federal funding

No No 6-May-02
Massachusetts No Yes, must be registered to receive state financial aid No 1984
Michigan Yes, applicants for a license may 
register with the SSS
No No 4-Jan-07
Minnesota Yes, must be registered to receive license, permit, or identification card No No 13-May-04
Mississippi Yes, must be registered to receive license, permit, or identification card Yes, must be registered to receive state financial aid Yes, must be registered for state employment Education– 1984 / Employment–1999 / Driver’s License– September 1, 2002
Missouri Yes, applicants for license or permit may register with SSS Yes, must be registered to receive state financial aid Yes, must be registered for state employment Employment and education– July 14, 1999 / Driver’s license– July 1, 2003
Montana Yes, applicants for license, permit or identification card may register with SSS.  The state may release a list of eligible men to SSS if it is asked Yes, must be registered to receive state financial aid  Yes, must be registered for state employment 21-Apr-01
Nevada Yes, applicants for license, permit or identification card may register with SSS.   No No 1-Jul-10
New Hampshire Yes, applicants for license may register with SSS Yes, must be registered to receive state financial aid or to enroll in state funded institutions of higher education Yes, must be registered for state employment Employment and education– July 31, 1998 / Driver’s license– July 7, 2002
New Jersey No Yes, must be registered to receive state financial aid No 1997
New Mexico Yes, must be registered to receive license, permit, or identification card No No 1-Jul-03
New York  Yes, must be registered to receive license, permit, or identification card No Convicted draft law violators cannot hold public elected office 17-Mar-03
North Carolina Yes, must be registered to receive license or identification card Yes, must be registered to receive state financial aid Yes, must be registered for state employment Education– 1985 / Employment– 1989 / Driver’s license– April 1, 2003
North Dakota No Yes, must be registered to receive state financial aid No 1987
Northern Mariana Islands Yes, must be registered to receive license, permit, or identification card Schools must encourage the registration of students Yes, must be registered for state employment Employment– March 15, 1999 / Driver’s license– November 30, 2001
Ohio Yes, must be registered to receive license, permit, or identification card Yes, must be registered to receive state financial aid; any nonregistered resident males pay out of state tuition No Education– 1986 / Driver’s license– August 1, 2002
Oklahoma Yes, must be registered to receive license or identification card Yes, must be registered to receive state financial aid No Education– 1987 / Driver’s license– June 1, 2000
Puerto Rico Yes, applicants for license may register with SSS No No 12-Dec-11
Rhode Island Yes, must be registered to receive license, permit, or identification card No No 26-Jun-02
South Carolina Yes, must be registered to receive license or identification card No No 5-Jun-02
South Dakota Yes, must be registered to receive license Yes, must be registered in order to be enrolled in state funded institutions of higher education Yes, must be registered for state employment Employment and education­– 1988 / Driver’s license– February 23, 2002
Tennessee Yes, must be registered to receive license, learner’s permit or identification card Yes, must be registered in order to receive student financial aid from the state or be enrolled in state funded institution of higher education No Education– 1984 / Employment– 1987 / Driver’s license– December 1, 2002
Texas Yes, applicants for license and identification card will be registered Yes, must be registered to receive state financial aid Yes, must be registered for state employment Education– 1997 / Employment– 1999 / Driver’s license– May 28, 2011 (previous legislation passed December 9, 2002)
Utah Yes, must be registered to receive license or state identification card Yes, must be registered to receive state financial aid No Education– March 1998 / Driver’s license– April 30, 2001
Virgin Islands Yes, must be registered to receive license or permit No No 20-Feb-02
Virginia Yes, must be registered to receive license, learner’s permit, or identification card Yes, must be registered to receive state financial aid Yes, must be registered for state employment Education­– July 1, 1998 / Employment- April 5, 1999 / Driver’s license– July 2, 2002
Washington Yes, applicants for a license, permit, or identification card may register with SSS  No No 16-May-11
West Virginia Yes, applicants for license, permit, or identification card may register with SSS Yes, must be registered to receive state financial aid or enroll in a state funded institution of higher education Yes, must be registered for state employment Employment and education– July 1, 1999 / Driver’s license– June 9, 2002
Wisconsin Yes, must be registered to receive license, permit, or identification card Yes, must be registered to receive state financial aid Yes, must be registered for state employment Employment and education– January 1, 2002 / Driver’s license– November 1, 2002