New Rockford Transcript - Official Newspaper of Eddy County since 1883

Travelers reminded to obtain REAL ID licenses by Oct. 1


February 10, 2020

The Department of Homeland Security (DHS) reminds travelers that the upcoming REAL ID requirement and enforcement will start Oct. 1, 2020. At that time, every air traveler must present a REAL ID-compliant driver’s license, state-issued enhanced driver’s license, or other acceptable forms of identification, such as a valid passport or U.S. military ID, to fly within the United States. Individuals who are unable to verify their identity will not be permitted to enter the Transportation Security Administration (TSA) checkpoint and will not be allowed to fly.

“This is an important step in enhancing commercial aviation security and we urge travelers to ensure they have compliant documents,” said Acting Secretary Kevin K. McAleenan.

There is still work to do as only 27% of Americans have been issued a REAL ID at this time. DHS has been working to increase public attention and focus on the upcoming deadline. Beginning April 2019, TSA has displayed signs at airports notifying the public of changing requirements. In August, TSA began verbally advising travelers who present non-compliant licenses of the upcoming REAL ID requirement and enforcement date. TSA has also co-hosted REAL ID events with motor vehicle administration officials in numerous locations around the country throughout the spring and summer, with more to come.

Passed by Congress in 2005, the REAL ID Act implements the 9/11 Commission’s recommendation that the federal government “set standards for the issuance of sources of identification, such as driver’s licenses.” The Act established minimum security standards for state-issued driver’s licenses and identification cards and prohibits federal agencies from accepting licenses and identification cards from states that do not meet these standards for official purposes, such as at airport security checkpoints. The regulations established the deadline of Oct. 1, 2020, to ensure full enforcement of the REAL ID Act. States have made considerable progress in meeting this key recommendation of the 9/11 Commission.

What you will need to obtain a REAL ID

It is best to be prepared, especially when making a trip to a nearby (or not so nearby) licensing department. Obtaining a REAL ID requires several forms of documentation. In addition to providing documentation such as a birth certificate, social security card and/or passport to confirm the full legal name, date of birth and social security number, residents will need two proofs of address of principal residence (such as financial statement or a bill for utilities or landline phone, note cell phone bills are not acceptable.

In addition, if your name has changed due to marriage or another change, you will need to bring additional proof of your legal name like a marriage certificate or adoption document.

More information can be found online at or by contacting the licensing department prior to your visit.


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