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By: Liz Cepeda


Due to circumstances resulting from the COVID-19 pandemic and the national emergency declaration, the Department of Homeland Security is extending the REAL ID enforcement deadline by a year. The new deadline for REAL ID enforcement is May 3, 2023. Read the announcement.

Beginning May 3, 2023, every air traveler 18 years of age and older will need a REAL ID-compliant driver’s license, state-issued enhanced driver’s license, or another acceptable form of ID like a valid passport, to fly within the United States.

REAL ID-compliant cards are marked with a star at the top of the card. If you’re not sure, contact your state driver’s license agency on how to obtain a REAL ID compliant card.

This is all because the U.S. government is now setting standards for issuing sources of identification such as driver’s licenses, through the REAL ID Act. The goal of the Act is to prevent the fraudulent use of driver’s licenses and identification cards.

All states have to meet the law’s standards for secure issuance and production of driver’s licenses and identification cards to be REAL ID compliant. This means that the states have to put in anti-counterfeit technology into the card, verify the applicant’s identity, and conduct background checks for employees that issue driver’s licenses.  Check whether your state is compliant.

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