The REAL ID is a personal identification document that is available in all 50 United States. The new document has the same functions and characteristics as the passport, but with the particularity of being issued by the State (therefore it does not require an application to the embassy). For more information, keep reading this article.

What is the REAL ID United States?

The REAL ID is an official American identification card, issued by the United States. The REAL ID is equivalent to the passport and has the same functions as the latter document (both to travel internationally and locally).

The states of the United States have adopted the REAL ID to replace the old document known as “green license”. The new card requires more rigorous processing when applying, including:

  1. Make a request to the corresponding authority.
  2. Appear in person for renewal or reissue.
  3. It is necessary to present documents that prove: identity, age and legal residence.

The REAL ID is issued by the United States, not by embassies; therefore, you need to go personally to the competent authority to start the process after having completed all the relevant procedures. The goal of REAL ID United States is to make identity documents more consistent and secure.

Why do you need a REAL ID United States card?

You may need a REAL ID card in the following situations:

  1. Board regulatory commercial flights by the Federal Government.
  2. Enter Federal Government facilities or carry out specific procedures.
  3. Enter nuclear plants.

Who can apply for a REAL ID United States card?

All citizens or immigrants living in the United States with a legal presence and over 21 years of age can request this document. Likewise, permanent residents and holders of work or student visas.

What is the difference between REAL ID and passport?

The REAL ID United States has the same functions as the passport (for both international and local travel), but does not require the need for a criminal record or provide additional payments to the US Federal Government. Citizens or immigrants without permanent residence must have four (4) years of legal residence in the United States in order to apply for a REAL ID card.

How to apply for a REAL ID United States card?

In order to obtain a REAL ID, it is necessary to go to the appropriate US competent authority for the first time: local Department of Motor Vehicles (DMV). The processing requires to appear in person and deliver the following documents:

  1. Social Security number.
  2. Legal documentation indicating full name and date of birth.
  3. Legal status.
  4. Two (2) proofs of tax address.

However, it is important to take into account that each State may request different and / or additional documents; therefore, it is the obligation of each local resident to verify the corresponding policies and requirements by State Governments.

What are the costs?

The costs depend on the state; however, there is a general fee that amounts to approximately USD $ 27 (or its equivalent in pesos) for the REAL ID issued by the Department of Motor Vehicles, although this document cannot be requested or renewed from Mexico or Canada, it has a minimum value for get It.

REAL IDs United States are issued for the following categories:

  1. Category A – national identity document that allows international and local travel (must be applied if you need to board commercial flights regulated by the Federal Government).
  2. Category B – state or federal document for specific purposes, such as entering the government Congress, nuclear plants or other government buildings; however, they cannot be used by permanent residents without four (4) years of legal residence in the United States.
  3. Category C – document for state or federal identification with specific purposes, which allows entry to the Congress of the Federal Government and / or other government buildings (without requiring four (4) years of legal residence).

The REAL ID signifies a major change in the way national identity documents are issued. The main goal of REAL ID is to make them more authentic and intelligent; it also involves a more detailed identity verification process.

How to process the REAL ID United States card?

To apply, applicants must go to the Department of Motor Vehicles (DMV) website, complete the application online, and upload the required documents before visiting a local office. The request must be made through the following link: https://www.dmv.ca.gov/portal/driver-licenses-identification-cards/real-id/

Due to the high anticipated demand, it is recommended that applicants do not wait until the last minute to complete the process, as it can take a long time.

How do you know if your REAL ID United States card is eligible?

The REAL ID card is sometimes referred to as a ” Star Card ” because most states recognize it with a gold or black star in the upper right hand corner. If your card does not have one of these badges, it is not meeting the required requirements and it will not be accepted as proof of identity.

In addition, the card must include a machine-readable encryption zone; like those of your passport, with your identity information.

At Sleepless Attorney we have an experienced legal team to support and advise you on your REAL ID United States card process, if you have questions or are thinking of hiring a lawyer, do not hesitate to contact us at (909)319-7103 / 1 (800) 559-7170, visit us at 228 West C Street Ontario CA 91762 or by clicking here.

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