Deadline for REAL ID pushed back 1 year due to COVID-19 outbreak

The deadline for REAL ID registration nationwide has been pushed back by one year to account for disruptions caused by the outbreak of the novel coronavirus.

The original deadline to acquire a REAL ID by Oct. 1, 2020 has been moved to Oct 1, 2021.

In a statement, Acting Secretary of the Department of Homeland Security Chad Wolf said the delay was done in response to the COVID-19 pandemic at the direction of President Trump.

DMVs in many states — including D.C., Maryland and Virginia — have closed in-person services.

“This action will preclude millions of people from applying for and receiving their REAL ID,” Wolf said in the statement. “Extending the deadline will also allow the Department to work with Congress to implement needed changes to expedite the issuance of REAL IDs once the current health crisis concludes.”

REAL IDs are required under the REAL ID Act, which was passed by Congress in 2005. The act requires that state-issued IDs meet minimum security standards before they can be used to enter federal facilities and nuclear power plants or board federally regulated aircraft.

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Zeke Hartner

Zeke Hartner is a digital writer/editor who has been with WTOP since 2017. He is a graduate of North Carolina State University’s Political Science program and an avid news junkie.

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