Although still more than nine months away, the federal deadline to obtain a REAL ID is inching closer. And for Illinois residents wanting to get theirs sooner than later, there's good news: you don't have to wait.
Residents seeking a REAL ID are required to visit a Secretary of State Driver Services facility and provide documents that prove their identity, their Social Security number, a written signature and two documents that show proof of residency.
The following are acceptable documents to prove identity:
- Birth certificate
- U.S. passport
- Foreign passport with U.S. visa affixed with approved Form I-94 document
- Consular Report of Birth Abroad
- Certificate of Citizenship
- Certificate of Naturalization
- Employment Authorization Document
- Permanent Resident Card
- REAL ID
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To provide proof of their Social Security number, resident can show their Social Security card or a W-2, or a pay stub with a Social Security number on it will be accepted.
Illinois residents will also need to provide at least two proofs of residency to receive a REAL ID. Those can include the following: bank statement, canceled check, school transcript, credit card statement, mortgage or rental agreement, insurance policy, pay stub, retirement statement, report card, utility bill, voter registration card.
For a proof of signature, residents can show a credit or debit card, a canceled check, a current Illinois driver’s license or ID, a court order, a foreign passport, a Medicare card or a U.S. military ID.
For a full list of acceptable documents, click here.
REAL IDs will be required for those who don't have a valid U.S. passport or passport card and use airplanes as a mode of domestic transportation and visit military bases and/or secure facilities.
The U.S. Department of Homeland Security has extended the federal REAL ID deadline to May 3, 2023, citing the pandemic.
A REAL ID card will cost the same as a driver’s license ($30) or a state ID ($20).
After providing those documents, residents will receive a temporary paper ID at the facility (although residents are reminded that the TSA will NOT accept that paper ID), and will receive their new ID in the mail within 15 business days.
Illinois residents can complete an interactive checklist to ensure they have the documents necessary to apply.