REAL ID Act Information
What is the Real ID Act?
The Real ID Act is a federal law that requires state drivers' licenses and non-driver identification (ID) cards meet certain minimum standards. The cards are accepted for federal purposes, such as access to federal facilities, boarding commercial aircraft, or other secure federal facilities designated by the Secretary of the U.S. Department of Homeland Security.
On March 4, 2011, the U.S. Department of Homeland Security extended the deadline for states to comply with Real ID. Maryland is expected to have met the extended deadline, which is January 15, 2013. By December 1, 2017, everyone is expected to be issued a federally compliant driver’s license or ID card in Maryland.
What do I need to bring with me to get my driver’s license or identification card renewed?
If you have already provided a verified social security number (SSN) to the MVA, no additional documentation will be needed to renew your driver's license or reissue your ID card. If you have not provided the MVA with a verified social security number, you must bring documentation of your SSN to the MVA in order to renew. If you are not eligible for an SSN, you must provide satisfactory evidence that you have lawful status in the United States. If you cannot provide proof that you are in the U.S legally, you can only renew your driver’s license or ID card until June 30, 2015. The licenses and cards will not be accepted by federal agencies for official purposes. After June 30, 2015 all individuals must prove that they are in the U.S. lawfully in order to renew.
What documents are needed for a new driver’s licenses or identification card?
A new applicant for a learner's permit, driver's license, moped operator's permit or identification card must present
• (1) document to prove age and identity;
• (1) document to prove one possesses a verifiable social security number (SSN) or proof of ineligibility for an SSN;
• (1) document to prove lawful status in the United States; and
• (2) Maryland residency documents.
What happens to people who do not have federally compliant driver’s licenses or identification cards?
Those with driver’s licenses or identification cards that do not meet the federal standards may find it harder to travel by air and enter federal buildings. They may also be required to produce additional identity documents. Please contact the specific federal agency or the Transportation Security Administration (TSA) for further information.