The North Carolina REAL ID
WHAT IS AN NC REAL ID?
The NC Real ID is a driver’s license or State ID card issued by the North Carolina Division of Motor Vehicles (DMV) that meets new federal identification standards. These identification standards were established by Congress after the 9/11 terrorist attacks. The NC REAL ID card will look just like a regular NC driver’s license except it will have a gold star in the upper right-hand corner. New NC driver’s licenses that are not NC REAL ID cards will contain the words: “Not for Federal Identification.”
WHO NEEDS A REAL ID?
Not everyone needs a REAL ID. But beginning October 1, 2020, adults will need either a (1) REAL ID card, (2) a passport, or (3) some other approved ID to board a plane for both domestic and foreign destinations. (Children under 18 years old will not need a REAL ID or any ID if traveling with an adult companion who has acceptable ID.)
For a complete list of acceptable documents you may use to board a plane instead of a REAL ID, go to the Department of Homeland Security/Transportation Security Administration web site via the following link: https://www.tsa.gov/travel/security-screening/identification
In addition, the federal government will soon be using stricter identification requirements if you wish to enter a federal facility, including federal courthouses, military bases and nuclear facilities. A REAL ID will be acceptable ID to enter these facilities as well.
IF I WANT TO GET AN NC REAL ID, WHEN AND WHERE DO I GET IT?
NC REAL IDs are only available at local DMV driver license offices. If you never fly and you don’t plan to visit a federal facility, you probably do not need a REAL ID. But if you think you might need a REAL ID in the future, call your local DMV license office to make an appointment. Just don’t wait until 2020. The NC DMV estimates that up to 4 million drivers in North Carolina may want to get an NC REAL ID by Oct. 1, 2020. As you can imagine, the State’s DMV offices will be overwhelmed by requests as we approach the Oct. 1, 2020 date. So, the earlier you start the process, the easier time you will have getting an appointment at the DMV.
WHAT DOCUMENTS DO I NEED TO PROVIDE TO GET A REAL ID?
You need to provide three different types of documents.
- A document that shows your identity and date of birth. If your name is different than it appears on the document you choose to show your identity and date of birth, you will also need to provide another document that shows the name change.
- A document that shows your Social Security number.
- Two documents that show your current North Carolina residency.
The DMV will scan the documents you provide and keep them as part of your DMV record as required under federal law. For a complete list of the documents you can use to satisfy the three types of required documents, go to: www.ncdot.gov/dmv/license-id/nc-real-id/Pages/default.aspx
If you are not a US citizen, you will need to provide a document showing you are lawfully in the United States.
HOW MUCH DOES AN NC REAL ID COST?
If you are getting an NC REAL ID before it is time to renew your driver’s license, it costs the same as a duplicate license – $13. If you are getting an NC REAL ID when you first obtain your license or renew your license, the REAL ID costs $40 – the same as the cost of a new license. Getting a replacement license before your renewal date does not change the date when your license next comes up for renewal.