Deadline extended to May 2025
Erie County Clerk Michael P. Kearns announced the Department of Homeland Security postponed the enforcement of The REAL ID Act by another two years, with a new enforcement date of May 7, 2025.
U.S. travelers will then be required to provide a REAL ID-compliant credential if they want to board an airplane to fly domestically or enter a secure federal facility.
New York’s REAL ID-compliant driver’s licenses and ID cards have a star inside a black circle, in the upper right corner. Additionally, New York state’s enhanced ID (EDL) meets the new federal requirements and has the U.S. flag in the corner. The EDL is also valid to return to the U.S. by land or sea from Canada, Mexico and some countries in the Caribbean. An EDL is not acceptable for international air travel.
Congress passed the Real ID Act after the terrorist attacks of Sept. 11, 2001. Eighteen of the 19 hijackers had obtained state IDs, some fraudulently. The law, which set minimum security standards for driver’s licenses and ID cards issued by states, originally was to take effect in 2008.
Anyone needing to renew their driver license, learner’s permit or upgrade their standard driver’s license to meet the REAL ID requirements must do so in-person at the Erie County Auto Bureau.
To learn more about what identifying documents are required to obtain a REAL ID or enhanced driver’s license or non-driver identification card, go to erie.gov/clerk/REALID or call the clerk’s outreach center at 716-858-8864.