does real ID transfer from state to state

Does a Real ID Transfer From State to State?

As a result of the COVID-19 pandemic, REAL ID deadlines have been extended from the original October 2020 deadline to October 2021. This is good news for any U.S. citizen who has not yet obtained their updated ID through their local DMV office. While early in 2020 there were multiple states that were not yet compliant with the REAL ID act, in September 2020 The Department of Homeland Security announced that all states and territories were in compliance., Certain data suggests that U.S. citizens are moving out of cities and even out of state during the pandemic. With the implementation of REAL ID regulations in conjunction with permanent and out of state moves, many people are wondering whether  a Real ID transfers from state to state. 

What is a Real ID and What do I Need to Obtain One?

While the REAL ID act implements federal regulations regarding minimum security standards for the issuance of state-issued IDs, the Real ID is not issued by the federal government itself. Unlike your passport, Real IDs are issued at the state level. This means that, just like your driver’s license, your Real ID application and processing takes place by utilizing your individual state’s DMV services. 

After October 2021, U.S. citizens will be required to carry a Real ID or a current passport in order to gain access to federal facilities or to board commercial domestic flights. 

In order to obtain your Real ID, you will need specific documents to help securely prove your identity. Items such as a certified copy of your birth certificate or certificate of naturalization, proof of social security number (social security card or a W-2 from an employer), and proof of residency(utility bill or bank or financial statements) will be required when you submit your Real ID application. 

Growing awareness of the implementation of the REAL ID act resulted in a backlog of applications as the 2020 deadline approached. With the extension of the deadline to October 2021, changes to the application process have been made in some states that allow you to begin the Real ID process online. It is important to note that – it will still be necessary to schedule an in person appointment to complete the process.

Does Real ID Transfer From State to State?

Because Real IDs are federally regulated but state-issued forms of ID, it means that your Real ID does not transfer from state to state. Unlike a passport or other form of federally issued identification, Real IDs are issued and processed on the state level. If you have already obtained your Real ID and are planning to move out of state, you will need to go through the application process again in your new state of residence. You will be required to pay the fee and provide documentation confirming your new residence.

Do I Have to Get a Real ID?

No one is required to obtain a Real ID.  A valid passport is a viable alternative and can be used to board domestic commercial flights or gain access to federal facilities.

Once you’ve obtained your Real ID in your state of residence, the renewal process is the same as renewing your state-issued driver’s license or ID. Because your identity has already been proven using the federally mandated REAL ID act security measures, you will be able to follow the same procedures you currently use to renew your ID. 

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