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REAL ID requirements in Washington



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WASHINGTON

The "Evergreen State" Comply with the REAL ID Act.

If you live in Washington, you may be able to USE your REAL ID or your Enhanced Driver's License, as the Department of Homeland Security and the Transportation Security Administration allows them as valids ID due to their secure issue procedure and the radiofrequency chip.

They are in coordination with the Federal Government and highly involved in achieving more security for all american territories. They want to help inhibit terrorists, they take very seriously the possibility of these ones trying to avoid detection by using fraudulent IDs, so that is why the Real ID project is a very good idea on coordination between States to help prevent these kinds of situations. Every State improves with the goal of a safest country and frontiers.

Go to the official state page

What is a REAL ID?

<strong>REAL ID</strong> info in Washington

The REAL ID is a new type of Identification card that you will have to get before October 1st 2021. This card is issued with more secure standards in every State. You will need this new card when you need to identify yourself for official purposes, and the Federal agencies will be obligated to request it to you in case you need to access any Federal Facilities, enter Nuclear Power Plants or even if you are about to board a commercial aircraft around the States.

The deadline to fully cover the new Identification cards is set to October 2021, from that date, every State will have to start issuing the new REAL ID for all the legal residents in the States to allow them to move around the States in a commercial aircraft.

The Department of Homeland Security (DHS), and the Transportation Security Administration (TSA) will give all States until October 1st 2021 to start to issue this new Identification cards according to the REAL ID standards, for that reason, the Department of Homeland Security is working really hard with all States to help them to comply the standards by the deadline.

The REAL ID is not a national identification card, and it doesn't create a centralized federal database. We would like to leave clear that every State will keep issuing their own cards with its characteristics and will keep having their own records.

There are some Drivers licenses that are still acceptable, like the Enhanced Drivers licenses issued in Michigan, New York, Vermont, Minnesota and Washington.

The process to obtaining your REAL ID is very similar to the one you go through when applying to a regular ID, in most of the States you will have to make an appointment and present enough evidence of your american citizenship or legal residence in america, apart from the documentation with your full name, date of birth, Social Security Number, address and legal Status.

All new REAL ID cards are distinguished from the regular ones because they have one of the following marks:

If you are not sure that your ID card complies with the REAL ID, just make an appointment and ask your agency before risking yourself to being denied to entrance any facility or in case you need to fly around the States. In this last case, if you still do not have ready your REAL ID for October 1st, you can still travel around using your passport; the Transportation Security Administration website offers some other interested information you may check before your flight.

Who can apply for a REAL ID in Washington?

The REAL ID is for all American citizens, every american must apply for a REAL ID before October first.

The Department of Homeland Security, in some cases, will allow some Special REAL IDs to non citizens or immigrants with no documentation, always with the difference that these cards will be marked with some other characteristics, symbols or color. If you are interested in this kind of cards, please visit the DHS website to check if you are allowed to apply for one of these REAL ID cards.

Any person with an Employment Authorization Document can apply for a REAL ID card which will be temporary until its expiration date. (In this case you will also need to be in possession of a Social Security Number).

The REAL ID Act has been modified with some additions to it, so if you are not sure you are entitled to have this Identification card, we recommend you to ask for assistance to you local State Agency or to visit the DHS website.

FLYING AROUND THE STATES AFTER/BEFORE OCTOBER 1, 2021

Every person planning to fly around the States after October 1 2021, must keep in mind that a REAL ID will be mandatory to go through the checkpoint at the airport, if someone is not in possession of the new REAL ID, this person may be allowed to board and Aircraft by using the passport as an alternative way to be identified. Otherwise, if you plan to fly before this date, the DHS and the TSA will allow you to travel with all the current driver's license and identification cards issued by your State.

The REAL ID is not required by children under 18 years old travelling accompanied, in this case, a valid ID will be enough to cross the security at the airport.

If you are planning to cross borders between the States and Mexico or Canada, please bear in mind that the REAL ID is not accepted to cross the border, nor even works as a valid ID to travel in an International cruise, a passport instead will be necessary to allow you to make this international travel. You will have your REAL ID to only be used to travel inside the United States.

WHAT DO I NEED TO GET MY REAL ID CARD?

As I told you before, if you are an American citizen or legal resident of the United States, you must obtain your REAL ID before OCtober 1st 2021. With this purpose, the following documentation will be required for your State agency:

  • ID with full name and date of birth - Passport if you are from a foreign country with a valid VISA.
  • Social Security Number - If you are from a foreign country, you will be required to bring your Employer Authorization Document or any valid document that allows you to work and reside in the States for a certain period of time.
  • 2 receipts/proofs of your principal local address - It is really important that you bring two.
  • Document of your Legal Status - you need to bring any proof in the case you are married, divorced or whichever your situation is.

Keep in mind that the process for obtaining or renewing your REAL ID card, will be in person, and it is not acceptable to do it remotely. Every State is in charge of their own database needed to issue the REAL ID card, so keeping that in mind, you may want to check your State specific requirements before your appointment.

WHAT HAPPENS IF MY STATE DOES NOT COMPLY WITH THE REAL ID STANDARDS?

The DHS is working really hard with all the States to comply with the REAL ID by the deadline. In the case you find out yourself in the situation that by the time when October comes your States does not issue this new type of identification, you will have two options:

One of the possible Options for you is to report your situation to the DHS: THere will be some States that already applied for an extension of time to comply with all this new security standards, that’s why, if you are not sure your State had been granted an extension, you can ask the DHS about the situation so they can help you and asses you ASAP.

You can be granted with a regular ID card that does not comply with the REAL ID standards, in this case, you can make a good use of your ID, and it will be valid for certain purposes but NOT FOR OFFICIAL ONES (The ID must have an inscription informing that the card is not valid for "Official purposes"), so in case you need to board an aircraft for a regional flight for example, you will have to use your passport.

Enhanced Driver's License:

These cards are acceptable as Border-crossing documents. Only the States of Washington, New York, Minnesota, Vermont and Michigan are the ones issuing this type of card. The Secretary of Homeland Security established this card as acceptable to enter the States by land and sea ports complying with the Western Hemisphere Travel Initiative, this is because this particular card is issued in a secure process that includes new technologies like a Radio Frequency Identification Chip.

COMPLIANCE in Washington



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