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The REAL ID Act

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  The federal REAL ID Act of 2005 sets new standards for the issuance of driver licenses and identification cards.


REAL ID Act Graphi c
REAL ID Good to Know Facts
  • The REAL ID Act became effective nationwide on May 11, 2008. Florida began issuing REAL ID compliant credentials after January 1, 2010. The new credentials have a star in the upper right corner of the card, as shown in the sample license example on the left.
  • Because Florida is a REAL ID compliant state, all Florida licenses should be accepted nationwide.

  • The Department of Homeland Security announced on December 20, 2013, that enforcement of REAL ID credentials will begin in a measured, fair and responsible way. Floridians will first see enforcement at nuclear power plants and restricted areas of certain federal facilities. No changes in enforcement are planned to occur any sooner than 2016 at airports across the country.

  • For additional information regarding the REAL ID Act or its enforcement please visit the Department of Homeland Security website at this link: http://www.dhs.gov/secure-drivers-licenses
REAL ID Act - Frequently Asked Questions
Question: What is REAL ID?
Answer: REAL ID is a nationwide effort to improve the integrity and security of State-issued driver licenses and identification cards, which in turn will help fight terrorism and reduce identity fraud.
   
Question: Does Florida plan to issue REAL ID licenses and ID cards?
Answer: Yes, Florida began issuing REAL ID licenses and ID cards on January 1, 2010.
   
Question: What documents do I need to bring with me when I apply for a REAL ID compliant license or ID card?
Answer: You will need to bring one of the following primary documents to establish your identity, proof of legal residence and date of birth: For a detailed list of required items, please visit www.gathergoget.com

For U.S. Citizens:
  • Valid, unexpired U.S. passport
  • Original or Certified copy of a birth certificate
  • Consular Report of Birth Abroad
  • Certificate of Naturalization issued by DHS
  • Certificate of Citizenship
For cases where the current name and the name on the primary identity document are different, you should also bring:
  • Court ordered name change document
  • Marriage certificate, issued by the courts and/or
  • Divorce decree, issued by the courts
In all cases, the document must show a clear trail of name changes originating with the birth name to the current name. For more detailed information on the required identity documents please visit www.gathergoget.com.

For Non-Citizens:
  • Valid, unexpired Permanent Resident Card – I-551 for Lawful Permanent Residents
  • Valid Passport for non-immigrants except for asylum applicants and refugees
  • Other government issued document showing your full name
  • Department of Homeland Security document showing proof of lawful presence
  • If your name has changed by marriage/divorce, you must have your name changed on your Citizen and Immigration Services (CIS) documents.
Both Citizens and Non-Citizens will need to bring:
  • Your Social Security Card or proof of your social security number.
    • A list of documents that provide proof of the social security number can be found on our website at:
      www.gathergoget.com
  • Two documents that show your principal residence
   
Question: Will I still be able to continue to renew my license online?
Answer:

You are allowed to renew one time by a convenience method (Internet or mail). Your next renewal must then be in a driver license office. For example, if you renewed your license online in March 2011, you will need to visit a driver license office for your next renewal.

   
Question: Will I be able to have both a REAL ID driver license and a REAL ID identification card?
Answer: No, the final Rule specifies that each individual can only hold a REAL ID driver license or a REAL ID identification card, but not both simultaneously. If you currently hold both, one will be cancelled during your next card issuance.
   
Question: After Florida begins issuing REAL ID licenses and ID cards, can I get mine before the expiration date on my current license or ID card?
Answer: Yes, a Class E license can be renewed up to 18 months prior to the card's expiration date.


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