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Oregon Real ID FAQs

Oregonians now have the option of obtaining driver licenses or identification cards that are compliant with the federal Real ID Act. Choose a subject below to read answers to questions frequently asked about Real ID. 

Learn more about Oregon and Real ID .

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 did Oregon begin issuing Real ID cards?

Oregon began issuing Real ID cards on July 6, 2020. Real ID cards are optional, and Oregonians who do not wish to get one can keep their standard driver license or ID card.

I was recently issued a card with a new design.  Is this a Real ID card?

No, Real ID cards feature the new card design, but also have a star in the upper-right corner. The new card was designed to meet the requirements of Real ID, but issuing a Real ID compliant card is about more than the plastic itself. It requires particular documents to be presented to DMV, which DMV will verify with federal systems, and then image and store. If you decide you want a Real ID then you need to go to DMV with all the necessary documents.

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

The difference is access. Starting May 3, 2023, 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.

Is the Oregon Real ID license an Enhanced Driver License?

No, Enhanced Driver Licenses (EDLs) are designated as acceptable land and sea border-crossing documents by DHS under the Western Hemisphere Travel Initiative. EDLs have different issuance and card requirements, such as RFID chips. The Oregon Real ID license does not allow you to travel internationally.

​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 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. However, if you have another form of federal ID, such as a valid 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, you can still board domestic commercial flights with your current driver license or ID card. Beginning May 3, 2023​, a Real ID compliant card or other federally-accepted identification will be required to board a domestic commercial flight or access secure federal facilities. 

Note: Transportation Safety Administration does not accept paper interim driver licenses, permits or ID cards as proof of identification.  Travelers should check with TSA before flying to find out what documents they will accept. For more information visit TSA’s website. 

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

It depends. Visit TSA’s website​ for their policy on 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 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.​

I currently have a Real ID license from another state. Is it transferable for an Oregon Real ID license?

No, Federal requirements don’t allow for the transfer of a Real ID license and require states to view and image all documentation upon original issuance in that state. You will need to present original documentation such as a U.S. birth certificate or passport, and two proofs of residence address, as well as meet all Oregon issuance requirements. However, Real ID licenses from other states can be used like any other out-of-state driver license to waive behind-the-wheel drive tests in certain circumstances.

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

You will need to bring in documents to verify: 

  • Identity and lawful status. Acceptable documents include a U.S. government-issued birth certificate, unexpired U.S. passport/passport card, Certificate of Naturalization, Certificate of Citizenship, Consular Record of Birth Abroad, valid permanent resident card, valid employment authorization card, an unexpired foreign passport with an unexpired visa and valid I-94 issued by DHS, or an unexpired passport issued from the Federated State of Micronesia, the Republic of Marshall Islands, or the Republic of Palau and a valid I-94 issued by DHS. 
  • Address. Acceptable documents can be found here​.  Two proofs of address are required and you must present hardcopy documents for imaging purposes. 

You can also use the Oregon Real ID Requirements Guide to determine the documents you will need and get a customized checklist.

Your documents will be verified and scanned and the copies stored securely for 10 years. Original documents will be returned to you.

Information regarding ordering identity and legal presence documentation can be found here:

What will DMV do with the documents I bring in?

Your documents will be scanned and retained securely in Oregon’s driver license system for a minimum of 10 years. Scanned files are available to limited DMV personnel only for the purpose of document verification. Personal information in Oregon driving records is protected, and can only be released to qualified entities under Oregon’s Record Privacy Law.

Are Real ID cards available?

Yes, although if you do not plan to fly domestically or access secure federal facilities, or if you already have a valid 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.​

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, 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.​

Oregon offers a non-specified sex indicator (“X”) on its driver licenses and identification cards. Will this remain an option for Real ID cards?

Yes, Federal standards require that gender, as determined by state policies, be displayed on the surface of a Real ID card. Oregon’s “X” indictor complies with this requirement. 

​I recently renewed my driver license. Will I need to apply again if I want to get a Real ID license before my next renewal?
If you choose to replace your current driver license with a Real ID driver license, you must apply in person at a DMV office.  You will pay the fee for a replacement driver license, as well as the Real ID fee. Your card will keep the same expiration date. You may want to wait to apply for a Real ID until your next renewal, and use another acceptable document, like a passport, for boarding domestic flights.

​What is the cost of a Real ID card?

Customers 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 of $30. This fee is based on the cost of issuing Real ID cards and will be charged at every Real ID issuance. 

I recently renewed my driver license. Will I need to pay again if I want to get a Real ID license before my next renewal?

If you choose to replace your current driver license with a Real ID driver license, you must apply in person at a DMV office. You will pay the fee for a replacement driver license, as well as the Real ID fee. Your card will keep the same expiration date. You may want to wait to apply for a Real ID until your next renewal, ​and use another acceptable document, like a passport, for boarding domestic flights.​

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

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