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What the Real ID Act Means for You

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The Real ID Act has gone into effect in the state of Ohio, and it makes some changes to state IDs.

Ohioans will be seeing updates to new federal standards for state driver’s licenses in the next few months, as a result of the 2005 Real ID Act.

Any Ohio driver’s license the Bureau of Motor Vehicles (BMV) issued before July 2, 2018, is no longer compliant with new federal regulations, according to BMV spokeswoman Lindsey Bohrer.

Under these new regulations, anyone who wants to board a plane or enter an exclusive government building without a passport will need a federally, Real ID-compliant ID. This goes into effect October 2020, Brian McNeal, public affair specialist for the Transportation Security Administration, said.

“People don’t need to rush,” Bohrer said.

According to the Department of Homeland Security’s website, Congress passed the Real ID Act in 2005 at the recommendation of the National Commission on Terrorist Attacks Upon the United States. The intention is to enhance national security.

Ohio is one of 35 states now fully compliant with the Real ID Act.

The process of getting a new federally compliant license is similar to getting a standard, non-federally compliant license. Any Ohioan can go to a local BMV and request either a federally-compliant license or a non-federally compliant standard license. There is no difference in the process of obtaining a federally compliant license for people under 21 and those over 21.

The cost of getting a federally compliant license and a standard license is the same, anywhere between $21.75 and $23. The BMV will take approximately 10 business days to send a new license. In the meantime, individuals can use their old license and a temporary ID printed by the BMV instead.

The BMV requires more documentation to receive a federally compliant license compared to a standard license. No one without an appropriate combination of documents will be able to obtain a federally compliant ID. A list of acceptable combinations of documents is available on the BMV website.

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