December 15 – The Real ID deadline has been pushed back, allowing Americans more time to get their new ID cards. But what does this mean for Washington residents?
Here’s what Washington residents need to know about Real ID, and when the new requirements will affect them.
What is Real ID?
Real ID is a federal law, not an ID card. The Real ID Act was passed by Congress in 2005 and “established new identification requirements that federal agencies may adopt for domestic air travel and entry to certain federal facilities,” says the Washington State Department of Licensing website.
The law prohibits certain federal agencies from accepting identification cards previously issued in places such as airports, federal buildings and military bases, according to the US Department of Homeland Security.
Through the Real ID Act, you may not need to get a new license, but instead use another form of identification you already have to board a plane, cross a US border crossing, or visit military buildings.
Why do I need an Authenticated ID?
On December 5, the US Department of Homeland Security pushed back the deadline for Americans to get their Real IDs from May 3, 2023 to May 7, 2025.
On May 7, 2025, if you do not have a form of identification that meets the Real ID requirements, federal agencies such as the DHS and TSA may turn you away from entering a federal building or boarding a domestic flight.
“Standard Washington identification cards and driver’s licenses will not work for air travel or accessing federal facilities,” the Washington State Department of Licensing website states.
For Washington state residents, these forms of identification will be accepted as forms of Real ID, according to the Washington State Department of Licensing:
— Permanent Resident Card (Green Card)
— US Military Identification
— US passport
— US Passport Card
— Foreign Passport
— US Citizenship and Immigration Services Employment Authorization Card (I-766)
— Photographic identification issued by the federally recognized tribe
— Enhanced Driving License (EDL)
— Enhanced Identification Card (EID)
“Your standard driver’s license or identification card will work for other United States travel, such as driving in Washington, across state lines, or riding a train,” the state licensing department’s website says.
How do I get a Real ID in Washington?
If you do not have an enhanced driver’s license, enhanced identification card or other forms of identification listed above, contact the Washington State Department of Licensing.
US citizens can learn how to apply for a passport on the US Department of State’s Bureau of Consular Affairs website.
If you need a US Citizenship and Immigration Services green card or Employment Authorization Card, visit the US Citizenship and Immigration Services website.
This story was originally published on December 15, 2022 10:25 AM.
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