REAL ID Deadline Moved to 2021: What do I Need to Know?

When people want to travel on a plan or enter certain federal facilities, they are required to have proof of identity. Usually, all you need is your regular driver’s license or passport. However, in 2019, it was announced these laws would be changing. Travelers in the United States were required to have a Real ID by October 2020 to be permitted through airport security. However, due to the COVID-19 pandemic, this deadline has been pushed back. Now, a Real ID will not be required until Fall of 2021. It is still important to be prepared ahead of time. Continue reading below to learn more about the Real ID.

What is Real ID?

The REAL ID Act was established in 2005 in response to the 9/11 terrorist attacks. It authorizes a federal standard for the issuance and production of identification cards and driver’s licenses. Some states, not New Jersey, have been authorized to have Enhanced Driver’s Licenses instead of the Real ID. The Act establishes a minimum security standard for state-issued driver’s licenses, and prohibiting federal agencies from accepting identification cards that do not meet these standards. This includes obtaining access to federal facilities, nuclear power plants, and more commonly – boarding federally regulated commercial aircraft. The requirement to obtain a Real ID is not an extra form of identification, rather an upgraded driver’s license. 

How Can I Get a Real ID?

It is important to prepare in advance when obtaining a Real ID, as you may find yourself at an airport in the Fall of 2021 unable to fly. It is best to begin this process early. You can receive a Real ID through your local Department of Motor Vehicles. When applying for a Real ID, you will be required to provide documentation showing the following:

  • Full legal name
  • Date of birth
  • Social security number
  • Two proofs of address of principal residence
  • Lawful status

How do I Know if I Already Have a Real ID?

If you have visited the DMV recently, there is a chance you already have the upgraded driver’s license. How do you know? Simply look at your driver’s license. Real ID’s will have a gold or black star on the top right corner of your identification.

Can I Still Fly Without a Real ID?

It is important to note that all states and territories will require a Real ID as of Fall 2021. However, this does not mean that it is impossible to fly without it. Instead, you will need a United States Passport, a United States Passport Card, or a State-issued Enhanced Driver’s License.

Contact our Firm

When facing a traffic violation, it is important to retain the services of a criminal defense attorney who can advocate for you. The Rem Katcher Law Group, P.C. is here to help. Contact our firm today.