The REAL ID Act was passed by Congress in 2005. This passage 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 Act established minimum security standards for license issuance and production and prohibits Federal agencies from accepting for certain purposes driver’s licenses and identification cards from states not meeting the Act’s minimum standards. The purposes covered by the Act are: accessing Federal facilities, entering nuclear power plants, and, boarding federally regulated commercial aircraft.
Every traveler should know that you have until October 1, 2020 to make sure that your driver's license is compliant. Or, here's a list of other acceptable forms of identification, such as a valid passport or U.S. military ID you can use to fly within the United States. Travelers who are unable to verify their identity will not be allowed to enter the Transportation Security Administration (TSA) checkpoint and will not be allowed to fly. You wouldn't like getting turned away before you even have a chance to take your shoes off.
So, what will you need to bring with you to your state driver's license agency's office to obtain your REAL ID? Requirements vary by state so be sure to check the website of the state you live in to save time, stress and guarantee the smoothest application process possible.
Here are a few things you can do in advance to prepare for your appointment at the Virginia's Department of Motor Vehicle's office.
First, you'll need to prove your full legal name. Be sure to bring along items such as a marriage certificate or divorce decree if your name isn't the same on all of the necessary proof documents.
You'll also need to provide proof of your identity, like a birth certificate.
You'll need proof of your Social Security number. If you don't have your Social Security card handy, a W-2 form or a payroll check stub from work will do.
Proof of residency is also a must. Bring along a recent monthly mortgage statement, a bank or credit card statement or a utility bill.
If you are properly prepared, it should only take you a few minutes to obtain your REAL ID-compliant driver's license. Make sure your ID is good to go before your next flight!