North Carolinians urged to get REAL ID sooner than later

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North Carolinians urged to get REAL ID sooner than later
December 28
04:00 2017

Even though 2018 is literally just a few days away, Oct. 1, 2020, still seems to be  a long way down the road. And yet, if you board a commercial airliner, or enter a secure federal facility like a courthouse or military base, officials say now is the time to know all about getting what’s known as a REAL ID.

Issued by the North Carolina Division of Motor Vehicles, the REAL ID is a state government identification card mandated by Congress in the aftermath of the 9/11 terrorist attacks, where airplanes were hijacked and used to attack the World Trade Center and the Pentagon in Washington, DC.

The N.C. REAL ID will make it more convenient when you need to board a commercial airplane or visit a military base or other federal facility.

If you do not have a REAL ID by Oct. 1, 2020, you will be required to show a passport in order to board a plane, or a U.S. Department of Defense identification, or one of at least a dozen IDs listed at the federal website of the U.S. Transportation Security Administration’s website at

Military bases, like Camp Lejeune and Fort Bragg, will require REAL IDs as of Jan. 22, 2018. Currently, two forms of valid identification are already required to enter a military facility.

A REAL ID looks very much like your driver’s license, except for a gold star in the right-hand corner. An estimated 4 million North Carolinians are expected to get their REAL IDs by Oct. 1, 2020, so DMV officials are getting the word out now to prevent a crush of long lines at the 113 DMV offices statewide, getting closer to the deadline.

To obtain a REAL ID, three types of documentation are needed.

*One should either be your birth certificate indicating U.S. citizenship, or your U.S. passport. If your name is currently different from that which is listed because of marriage or divorce, then a marriage certificate or divorce decree is then needed.

*Another document should be one that displays your Social Security number, like  pay stub or W-2 form.

*Finally, you’ll need a document that proves your North Carolina residency, like current unexpired driver’s license.

Please note that a REAL ID is separate from your driver’s license, which you are still required to renew. The REAL ID costs $40, and can be gotten at the same time you are renewing your driver’s license, as long as you do so before Oct. 1, 2020. Or you can get it before Oct. 1, 2020. You can get your REAL ID by appointment.

And no, children below the age of 18 are not required to have REAL IDs, but the adults they’re traveling with do.

For the full list of documents needed to apply for a REAL ID and for more information, go to

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Cash Michaels

Cash Michaels

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