Federal REAL ID mandate takes effect Oct. 1, 2020


SPRINGFIELD — Illinois Secretary of State Jesse White is reminding Illinoisans that the federal REAL ID mandate takes effect on Oct. 1, 2020. For Illinois residents who fly domestically, effective Oct. 1, 2020, the federal government will require you to use a valid U.S. passport or obtain a REAL ID from the Illinois Secretary of State’s office.
It is important to know the following key points:
You have a choice. You do not need a REAL ID if you have a valid U.S. passport, military ID or other TSA-acceptable form of identification. These documents will be accepted for domestic air travel. For a complete list of acceptable documents, please visit: https://www.tsa.gov/travel/security-screening/identification.
You do not need a REAL ID if you do not fly domestically or visit secure federal facilities.
However, if you want to apply for a REAL ID, come prepared with the necessary documents.
Customers are encouraged to visit www.REALID.ilsos.gov and use the interactive document checklist to help ensure they bring the proper documents to the facility, making the process more efficient.
Customers are asked to please be patient at facilities as the process to apply for a REAL ID takes longer due to the multiple documents required by the federal government.
Customers are also encouraged to take advantage of the many online services offered allowing patrons to conduct business from home. Some online transactions include: obtaining a duplicate driver’s license or ID card, renewing a vehicle registration, obtaining a driver record abstract or renewing a standard driver’s license with the Safe Driver Renewal Program.
Illinois REAL ID cards are now a permanent option for Illinois residents.
Current Illinois driver’s licenses or ID cards will be accepted for domestic air travel or to enter secure federal facilities until Oct. 1, 2020. According to the federal government, a valid U.S. passport, passport card, and military ID are some acceptable alternatives to a REAL ID card.
“Our goal is to continue raising awareness about REAL ID so Illinoisans can make an informed decision on whether they want to apply for a REAL ID or keep their current driver’s license or ID card,” said White. “We are asking Illinoisans who choose REAL ID to come prepared with the necessary documents and to please be patient at the facility because the process takes longer due to the multiple documents required by the federal government.”
The REAL ID Act is a federal mandate by the U.S. Department of Homeland Security that sets standards for state-issued DL/IDs by making identification documents more secure to combat fraud and identity theft.
REAL ID cards meet security requirements set by the federal government and have a gold star marking in the top right corner. Standard DL/IDs that do not comply with requirements of the federal REAL ID Act are marked with the phrase “Federal Limits Apply,” as called for by the federal law.
Based on federal guidelines, to obtain an Illinois REAL ID card, all applicants — including those who currently hold a standard Illinois DL/ID — must provide:
One document proving identity (examples: a certified U.S. birth certificate, a U.S. passport, an employment authorization document, a permanent resident card or a foreign passport with an approved I-94 form).
For more information on REAL ID, visit REALID.ilsos.gov. For more information on the REAL ID Act, please visit the U.S. Department of Homeland Security’s website at dhs.gov/real-id-public-faqs.

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