STATE — REAL ID pre-verification remains open, states the Pennsylvania Department of Transportation (PennDOT), encouraging residents interested in obtaining the new form of identification to utilize the service.

REAL ID “ optional for Pennsylvania residents,” and is a “...federally accepted form of identification...” that must “ used as identification to board a commercial flight or visit a secure federal building on and after Oct. 1, 2020.”

Other forms of valid identification include a U.S. Passport/Passport Card or military ID, and PennDOT “...will continue to offer standard-issue driver's licenses and photo IDs.”

Items that are REAL ID compliant are marked with a gold star, located in the upper-right corner of the document.

Non-compliant, standard-issue items will state “Not for REAL ID Purposes” to comply with federal regulations.

How to apply

To apply for a REAL ID, customers should bring in all required documentation to any PennDOT Driver's License center.

Required documentation includes:

• Proof of Identity: Original or certified copy of a birth certificate with a raised seal or valid U.S. Passport

• Proof of Social Security Number via Social Security Card

• Two proofs of current, physical Pennsylvania address. Valid proof includes a current, unexpired PA license, auto insurance card or utility bill

• Proof of all legal name changes if the current full legal name is different than what is on the proof of identity document. Valid proof includes a certified marriage certificate or court order issued by your county's family court.

“Because PennDOT may already have electronic documents on file for approximately 35 percent of its total customers, individuals who received their first PA driver’s license or ID card after September 2003, these customers have had the option to apply for REAL ID pre-verification online since March of 2018,” the organization states.

Any person who received a product prior to 2003 will need to bring the required documents to a Driver's License Center to be verified in person, as PennDOT does not have them on file.

Once the documents are entered into the customer's record, the REAL ID will be “...sent through the mail, eliminating any need for this customer to visit a Driver's License Center” when the product becomes available in March of this year.

The cost of REAL ID is a one-time fee of $30, plus a renewal fee of $30.50 “...for a four-year non-commercial driver's license or a photo ID.”

The expiration date of the initial new ID “...will include any time remaining on their existing non-REAL ID product, plus an additional four years...”

The exception is if the customer “ over 65 and has a two-year license.”

This allows for those receiving the ID to not forfeit any time they have already paid for.

For additional information on REAL ID, visit