Your driver’s license can do more than just the obvious. Sure, it grants you the authority to legally operate a vehicle, but it also serves as one of the most commonly used forms of identification out there. Effective in May 2023, your Florida driver’s license—if it hasn’t already, will need a bit of an upgrade to become a REAL ID-compliant form of ID.
In a post-9/11 world, national security conversations have mostly been around how we can better protect our national security interests. As a result, and following the recommendation by the 9/11 Commission, Congress passed the REAL ID act in 2005. The act’s purpose is to create a new uniformed standard of identification across the country while giving the state the authority to make design-centric choices—this includes driver’s licenses.
Although the enforcement of the law has been slow, the act is set to be officially put in place and legally enforced starting in the Spring of 2023
Effective on May 3, 2023, a state-issued REAL ID will be required across the country to gain entry to the following spaces:
Chances are, unless you are required to have a REAL-ID compliant form of ID to gain entry into a government facility or nuclear power plant, these issues may not affect you. However, if you’re planning on boarding a domestic flight anytime after the May deadline, you’ll need to have a REAL-ID compliant form of ID to prove your identity.
How to get a Florida REAL ID
To change or obtain a Florida REAL-ID, make sure to do the following steps:
The fee for a REAL ID in Florida is $25. Since 2010, Florida has been issuing REAL ID-compliant credentials on all licenses.
The best way to check to see if your license is federally compliant is by seeing if your license has a star on the card’s upper right corner. If it does, you’re in the clear. If it doesn’t, your license is still valid, but you won’t be able to use it if a REAL-ID is required, starting in 2023.
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