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You Will Need a REAL ID Driver’s License to Fly Domestically in the U.S. by Scott Randolph

You Will Need a REAL ID

Driver’s License to Fly Domestically in the U.S.

by Scott Randolph

The federal REAL ID Act was passed by Congress in 2005, but it will have a big impact on residents nationwide starting in October 2020.

That’s because, starting next fall, all residents ages 18 and older will need to present a REAL ID-compliant driver’s license or state ID, indicated by a gold star in the top right-hand corner of the credential, or another acceptable form of identification, such as a passport, in order to fly commercially within the United States. To fly internationally, cross the border into Canada or Mexico, and enter an international port from a cruise ship, residents will still need to present a passport.

In Orange County, more than 90% of drivers are already REAL ID compliant, but that still means many thousands are not.

While you’re reading this article, check your driver’s license or state ID card for a gold star in the top right-hand corner. Check your family members’ IDs, too. If it’s

there, that means you’re REAL ID compliant and no further action is required until your license is up for renewal.

If you don’t see a gold star, you will need to visit your local tax collector office in order to update your driver’s license or ID, and bring in three categories of documents to prove your identity, including:

1. Primary Identification, such as an original U.S. birth certificate or valid U.S. passport.

2. Proof of Social Security Number, like your original Social Security card, W-2 form or a paycheck.

3. Two Proofs of Residential Address, such as a vehicle registration, voter registration card, utility bill, mortgage statement or residential lease agreement.

For a full list of document requirements and to schedule an appointment to visit us in person, visit

Scott Randolph has served as the independently elected Orange County Tax Collector since 2013.

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