Texas is making a major change to the way residents can identify themselves. Starting May 3, 2023, you may have trouble getting into federal buildings and even boarding domestic flights if your ID/DL is not updated. 

ARE YOU REAL ID COMPLIANT?

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Back in 2016, Texas began the switch to a REAL ID. If you have gone to renew your driver's license or ID card, then you may have noticed a yellow star located in the upper right corner of the card.

WHAT IS REAL ID?

Back in 2005, Congress passed the REAL ID Act- an extension of the Emergency Supplemental Appropriations Act for Defense, the Global War on Terror, and the Tsunami Relief Act. "REAL ID is a coordinated effort by the states and the federal government to combat terrorism, identity theft, and other crimes." 

HOW DOES REAL ID AFFECT ME?

If you do NOT have an updated card with the REAL ID star you will NOT be able to:

  • board domestic flights
  • enter federal facilities
  • entering nuclear power plants
  • use DL/ID for other official federal purposes

If your card is not REAL ID compliant you will still be able to use your old DL/ID for state-related purposes like

  • driving
  • voting
  • banking

HOW DO I GET A REAL ID?

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You will need to go to your local DMV office. Since the main point of REAL IDs is to create stronger security, there are a few documents you will need to get your updated card. You can count on needing the basics like: 

  • proof of identity
  • proof of address
  • current Texas Insurance and Registration(if applying for a DL)

There are multiple documents you could use. Check out this REAL ID CHECKLIST to find out exactly which documents you have already and which ones you will need to gather before going to get your REAL ID at the DMV office.

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