REAL ID takes effect next October, officials warn Minnesotans not to wait

REAL ID takes effect on October 1, 2020. (FOX 9 Minneapolis-St. Paul)

In just over a year, REAL ID will be taking effect at airports and federal buildings across the country. Officials are urging Minnesotans not to wait to the last minute to get their new identification.

“There is only about 10 percent of Minnesotans that are REAL ID ready today,” said John Harrington, the Department of Public Safety Commissioner. “That means we have a lot of work, and a lot of ground to cover.”  
That means unless you have a passport or other document proving your ID and citizenship, you will not be allowed to board a plane starting October 1, 2020.

Applying for a REAL ID driver’s license requires a number of documents

  • a passport or birth certificate proving your identity and date of birth
  • one document that proves your social security number
  • two documents that prove your current Minnesota address. These can be utility bills or a bank statement from the past 90 days.

One deputy registrar says some people may need even more documents, especially if they’ve changed their name.

“If you have a different name on your birth certificate than your driver’s license, now you’re going to have to prove your name change and bring in that certified marriage certificate,” said Deputy Registrar Colton Seisler.

There’s a 27-day wait to get a REAL ID back from the state, which is why officials say it’s better to apply sooner, rather than later.

“Don’t wait until next September and be counting down the days to be sure you didn’t miss a day somewhere in the process,” said Harrington.