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What Is the REAL ID Deadline?

According to a recent study from the US Travel Association, nearly 75 percent of Americans either don’t have or don’t know if they have a REAL ID. This federally compliant license will be a requirement for domestic air travel starting October 1, 2020. What do you need to know to get a REAL ID before next year’s deadline?

About the Process

According to the DMV, you need a REAL ID if you don’t have a US passport and you:

  • Travel domestically via airplanes
  • Visit military bases
  • Visit secure federal facilities

Verified licenses have a gold star in the top right corner. Connecticut residents who renewed or applied for a license after October 2011 may already have a REAL ID without realizing it. The DMV started offering this verification check almost 10 years ago and it’s now a requirement for first-time applicants who qualify, based on the criteria listed above.

US citizens and permanent residents applying for a REAL ID must present two forms of identification, including at least one from the “primary” document list. Proof of your Social Security number and Connecticut residency are also required. See the full list of accepted identification documents here.

For non-US born citizenship and name changes, the DMV requires additional documentation.

The US Travel Association estimates 80,000 people without a REAL ID could be kept from their flights, resulting in a loss of $40.3 million for travel businesses!

Why the Push for REAL ID?

The REAL ID Act was passed by Congress in 2005 but for more than a decade, there have been several delays in its implementation.

According to the Department of Homeland Security, the REAL ID Act enacted 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 new ID cards are designed to better prevent forged US identifications. While your license will be much more secure, it will actually be easier for you to visit federal facilities.

The sooner you apply for a REAL ID, the better. If you do not have a secondary form of identification, you will not be able to fly domestically after October 1, 2020. Take the necessary documents to the Connecticut DMV to get the process started today!

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