The REAL ID enforcement deadline, originally set for October, has been extended a year in response to the ongoing coronavirus.
“Due to circumstances resulting from the COVID-19 pandemic and the national emergency declaration, the Department of Homeland Security, as directed by President Donald J. Trump, is extending the REAL ID enforcement deadline beyond the current Oct. 1, 2020, deadline,” said Acting Secretary of the U.S. Department of Homeland Security Chad Wolf. “I have determined that states require a 12-month delay and that the new deadline for REAL ID enforcement is Oct. 1, 2021.”
Wolf said the federal, state and local response to the spread of the coronavirus in the country necessitates a delay in the deadline.
“Our state and local partners are working tirelessly with the administration to flatten the curve and, therefore, we want to remove any impediments to response and recovery efforts,” said Wolf.
States across the country are temporarily closing or restricting access to DMVs. This action will preclude millions of people from applying for and receiving the REAL ID. By extending the deadline, the department can work with Congress to implement needed changes to expedite the issuance of REAL IDs once the current health crisis concludes.