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Make appointment, gather documents to get REAL ID

Offices of the DMV are busier than usual as people line up to upgrade to the soon-to-be-required REAL ID.

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RALEIGH, N.C. — Offices of the DMV are busier than usual as people line up to upgrade to the soon-to-be-required REAL ID.

"REAL ID is the new form of ID that alone will allow you to be on airplanes or access any federal facility or military base beginning in 2020," said Patrice Bethea of the North Carolina Division of Motor Vehicles.

The federal identification standard is changing, and a state-issued driver's license will no longer be sufficient for those who want to fly, enter a federal building like a courthouse or visit a military base. Those who don't make a change will have licenses that say "not for federal identification" and will have to bring additional documents to access those places.

Enter REAL ID. Individuals who show additional proof of identity when they renew their license can get a REAL ID North Carolina license, which is designated with a gold star.

Drivers need to provide:

  • One document proving your identity and date of birth, something like a valid, unexpired U.S. passport or birth certificate that bears your current, legal name. If your name does not match what's on your document, you will need to provide proof of your name change.
  • One document proving your Social Security number, such as your Social Security card or W-2 form.
  • Two documents with your current North Carolina address, that could be a driver's license, voter ID card or utility bill.
  • Documents required for NC REAL ID

You'll get a temporary license, and your REAL ID will arrive in the mail after about two weeks.

Those who prefer not to stand in line can make an appointment at any NC DMV office.

A REAL ID costs $13 if your license isn't due for renewal. If you wait until it's due, it won't cost any more than the standard renewal.

Congress passed the REAL ID Act in 2005 in response to the Sept. 11, 2001, terrorist attacks.



Brian Shrader, Reporter
Jodi Leese Glusco, Web Editor

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