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AAA Mid-Atlantic: PA REAL ID Deadline Extended
PA travelers will continue to use their driver’s license at airport security until October 2018.
PHILADELPHIA, PA (October 19, 2017) – The Department of Homeland Security (DHS) has granted REAL ID extensions to 17 states, including Pennsylvania, allowing these states additional time to issue driver licenses and ID cards that meet federal security standards. States receiving the extensions have until October 10, 2018 to continue work on implementing new, secure licenses. Residents from these states can continue to use their current driver license to enter federal facilities and board domestic flights.
“AAA has long supported Pennsylvania adopting REAL ID, ensuring Pennsylvania identification will comply with standards required by the Federal REAL ID Act of 2005, allowing air travelers to move through security checkpoints more efficiently,” said Jana L. Tidwell, manager of Public and Government Affairs for AAA Mid-Atlantic. “This most recent implementation extension affords PennDOT the additional time needed to bring the state’s REAL ID program to fruition, so that Pennsylvania travelers can enjoy safe, REAL ID compliant air travel.
The Pennsylvania Department of Transportation (PennDOT) has begun work on the implementation of REAL ID, and estimates REAL ID-compliant driver licenses and identification cards will be available at the customer’s option in March 2019. This will allow ample time for customers who want a REAL ID product to get one before the final DHS effective date of October 1, 2020.
Beginning October 1, 2020, every air traveler will need to present a REAL ID-compliant license or another acceptable form of identification for domestic air travel.
DHS continues to review the six remaining states and five U.S territories that were not granted an extension at this time. They must show DHS they are moving forward to meet the driver licensing criteria by January 22, 2018, which is the date that TSA will no longer accept driver licenses from these places for domestic travel or entry into federal facilities
States and territories still under review include:
Northern Mariana Islands
U.S Virgin Islands
What is REAL ID?
Following a recommendation of the 9/11 Commission, Congress passed the REAL ID Act in 2005 that “set standards for the issuance of sources of identification such as driver’s licenses.” The Act established minimum security standards for state-issued driver’s licenses and identification cards, and prohibits Federal agencies such as the TSA from accepting, for official purposes, licenses and identification cards from states that do not meet these standards.
REAL ID in Pennsylvania
In May 2017, Governor Tom Wolf signed SB133, known as the Pennsylvania REAL ID Compliance Act (Act 3 of 2017), which will allow Pennsylvania to offer residents an optional REAL ID-compliant driver license or state identification card, which can be used to access airports, and federal facilities. PennDOT has begun work on the implementation of REAL ID, and estimates REAL ID-compliant driver licenses and identification cards will be available at the customer’s option in March 2019, allowing ample time for customers who want a REAL ID product to get one before the final DHS effective date of October 1, 2020. Pennsylvania’s most recent REAL ID enforcement extension expired October 10, 2017. The Department of Homeland Security (DHS) is currently reviewing Pennsylvania request for another extension.
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