If you’ve been putting off getting your REAL ID, you officially have more time. Two more years, to be exact.
The Department of Homeland Security announced Dec. 5 that it was extending the deadline for U.S. citizens to obtain the new identification from May 3, 2023, to May 7, 2025. This marks the fifth time the deadline has been extended, according to a roundup on CNBC.
Passed by Congress in 2005 following a 9/11 Commission recommendation, the REAL ID Act establishes minimum security standards for state-issued driver’s licenses and identification cards, DHS said.
The opening of Newark Liberty International Airport’s $2.7 billion Terminal A is being pushed back until January. Click here to read why.
After the final enforcement deadline, federal agencies, including the Transportation Security Administration (TSA), will not be allowed to accept driver’s licenses or ID cards that don’t match these standards for those age 18 and older. These IDs will be required to access certain federal facilities; board federally regulated commercial aircraft; and enter nuclear power plants.
“This extension will give states needed time to ensure their residents can obtain a REAL ID-compliant license or identification card,” Secretary of Homeland Security Alejandro Mayorkas said in a statement. “DHS will also use this time to implement innovations to make the process more efficient and accessible.”
The agency added that the new extension was necessary because of “lingering impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic” and citizens’ ability to obtain a REAL ID, including backlogs at state driver’s licensing agencies.
The New Jersey Motor Vehicle Commission added updated information on its website, including how to obtain a REAL ID card. New Jersey’s REAL ID cards will feature a white star symbol on a yellow circle in the top right corner. States and territories will have one of five markings on their IDs.