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Oregon Real ID FAQs


Beginning mid-2020, Oregonians will have the option of obtaining driver licenses or identification cards that are compliant with the federal Real ID Act.

Frequently Asked Questions

​What is the Real ID Act?

The Real ID Act was passed by Congress in 2005, based on recommendations from the 9/11 Commission that the federal government “set standards for the issuance of sources of identification, such as driver's licenses.” It establishes standards that state-issued driver licenses and identification cards must meet in order to be accepted for certain federal purposes.

When will Oregon begin issuing Real ID cards?

Oregon will begin issuing Real ID cards in mid-2020. Real ID cards will be optional, and Oregonians who do not wish to get one can keep their standard driver license or ID card.

What are the differences between Oregon’s current driver license and a Real ID license?

The difference is access. Starting Oct. 1, 2020, the federal government will require Real ID compliant identification to board a domestic commercial flight or enter a secure federal building or military base, so you will not be able to use a standard Oregon Driver License or ID Card for these purposes. However, you may use a passport or other acceptable form of federal identification. See the TSA website​ for other forms of identification that will be accepted.

Both license types will allow you to legally drive and prove identity and age for things such as entering an age-restricted venue, buying alcohol or tobacco products, renting a vehicle, or writing a check.

Oregon has been granted an extension to Real ID enforcement. What does that mean?

The federal government grants extensions to states that are working towards issuing Real ID driver licenses and identification cards.​ The extension means that you can continue to use your Oregon Driver License or ID Card to board commercial aircraft or enter secure federal facilities. Oregon DMV expects to receive additional extensions until we can start to issue Real ID cards in mid-2020.

Where can I learn more about Real ID?

Visit the Department of Homeland Security’s website.

​Am I required to get a Real ID card?

No, it will be your choice to apply for a Real ID driver license or ID card or a standard driver license or ID card. If you have a valid U.S. passport (or passport card), or other federally-approved identification, you may use it to pass security checkpoints at airports nationwide and to visit secure federal facilities.

How do I decide whether to get a Real ID card?

  • Do you fly domestically on commercial aircraft?
  • Do you need to access a federal facility that requires identification?

If the answer is “yes” to either question, you may want to consider getting a Real ID card when Oregon begins issuing in mid-2020. However, if you have another form of federal ID, such as a valid U.S. passport, you can use that instead of a Real ID card to fly commercially and enter secure federal facilities.

Can I board a plane with the driver license or ID card I have now?

Yes, Oregon currently has an extension for Real ID enforcement that allows you to board domestic commercial flights with your current driver license or ID card. DMV anticipates receiving additional extensions until Real ID cards are issued in mid-2020. Beginning Oct. 1, 2020, a Real ID compliant card or other federally-accepted identification will be required to board a domestic commercial flight or access secure federal facilities.

Do children need a Real ID card to fly on a domestic commercial flight?

It depends, TSA’s policy on identification can be found at: https://www.tsa.gov/travel/security-screening/identification.

What identification do I need to enter federal facilities?

Identification requirements vary by facility, so check with the facility before visiting. A Real ID card is not required for entering the public area(s) of a federal building or other federal facilities where identification is not required for access. 

What don’t I need a Real ID card for?

A Real ID card is optional and is not required for any of the following:

  • Driving.
  • Voting or registering to vote.
  • Proving age to enter an age-restricted venue or to purchase alcoholic beverages, tobacco, firearms, or other age-restricted activities.
  • Applying for or receiving federal or state benefits.
  • Entering a federal facility for accessing health or life preserving services (including hospitals and health clinics).
  • Participating in law enforcement proceedings or investigations.
  • Participating in constitutionally protected activities (including a defendant’s or spectator’s access to court proceedings, and access by jurors or potential jurors).

What other documents can I use for federal identification if I choose not to get a Real ID card?

You can use a valid U.S. passport, passport card or other approved document to pass through airport security or enter secure federal facilities or military bases. The Transportation Safety Administration maintains an updated list​ of what will be accepted to board a domestic commercial flight. Different federal facilities may have their own requirements, so you should contact them to find out what you will need.

Can I still drive if I have a valid Oregon Driver License that is not Real ID compliant?

Yes, standard Oregon Driver Licenses will remain valid for driving purposes. Obtaining a Real ID driver license will be optional.

Will my non-Real ID card be less secure?

No, all Oregon Driver Licenses and ID cards contain many security features that make it very difficult to alter, counterfeit, duplicate or modify the card without detection. While the process required by the Department of Homeland Security to obtain a Real ID card is different than for a standard card, the standard cards will have the same security features.​

​What documentation will be required when I decide to get a Real ID card?

When Oregon DMV begins to issue Real ID cards, you will need to bring in documents to verify:

  • Your identity and legal presence, such as a U.S. government-issued birth certificate or valid U.S. passport.
  • Your Social Security number, such as your Social Security card.
  • Your address, such as a utility bill and a vehicle registration card.

Additional information about required documentation will be available in the future. Your documents will be verified and scanned and the copies stored securely for 10 years. Original documents will be returned to you.

When will Real ID cards be available?

Oregon DMV will begin issuing Real ID cards in mid-2020. If you do not plan to fly domestically or access secure federal facilities, or if you already have a valid U.S. passport (or passport card), you may want to wait until it is time to renew your current Oregon Driver License or ID card to avoid the initial rush.

What is the cost of a Real ID card?

Customers will pay the standard fee for replacement, renewal or original issuance of a driver license or identification card, as well as an additional Real ID fee, which is yet to be determined. This fee will be based on the cost of issuing Real ID cards.

I already brought in identity documents to receive my standard Oregon Driver License. Will I have to bring them in again to receive a Real ID license?

Yes, federal Real ID regulations require Oregon DMV to verify and copy the documents you present to prove your identity, Social Security number, and Oregon residency, even if you already have an Oregon Driver License or ID card.

What if I am unable to bring in the required documentation to obtain a Real ID Card?

You still might be eligible for a standard Oregon Driver License or ID card, since the requirements for these are different.​

If you have more questions regarding Oregon's compliance with Real ID standards, please fill out this form​.​


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