Real ID deadline extended to October 2021 because of coronavirus

Michael Pearson
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Summary Micheal Pearson
Posted on Mar 26, 2020

REAL ID-compliant identification cards until 2021 due to the coronavirus outbreak


The Department of Homeland Security (DHS) announced that Americans now have until October 1, 2021, to get Real ID Act compliant identification. Compliant identification is required for boarding commercial flights, entering federal buildings, or accessing American nuclear plants.

The REAL ID Act, was originally passed in 2005 as one of the 9/11 Commission’s key recommendations. It set Federal standards for the issuance of sources of identification, such as driver's licenses. The goal of the act is to set minimum security standards for state-issued driver’s licenses and identification cards, and prohibits Federal agencies from accepting licenses and identification cards from states that do not meet these standards. The rules have been waived for years to give states time to comply, however this new deadline acknowledges administrative and public safety concerns created by the coronavirus outbreak.

The October 1 deadline for enforcement of federal TSA REAL ID rules has been delayed ONE YEAR to October 1, 2021.

Now that the REAL ID timeline has changed, obtaining a Travel ID is currently a non-critical service. As a result, the Arizona Department of Transportation (ADOT) has advised MVD customers to postpone their plans to get the AZ Travel ID while precautions are in place to significantly limit the number of people in offices. ADOT has cancelled all AZ Travel ID appointments, and only essential in-person services are being offered by appointment.