Iowa DOT News

REAL ID deadline extended to May 2023

ANKENY, Iowa – APRIL 28, 2021 – The Department of Homeland Security announced yesterday that due to circumstances resulting from the COVID-19 pandemic, the deadline for REAL ID enforcement has been extended from October of this year to May 3, 2023. However, the Iowa Department of Transportation is encouraging anyone who plans to fly on a commercial airline or enter a federal building that checks identification upon entrance to consider obtaining a REAL ID sooner rather than later.

Darcy Doty, Customer Services Bureau director states, “Currently 53% of driver’s license and ID holders or 1.3 million Iowans have a REAL ID marked card. This is great progress, but we want to assure that anyone who wants a REAL ID obtains one before the deadline and that we are doing all we can to help them bring the correct documentation with them when they come into get a REAL ID.”

To get a REAL ID marked card, federal law requires you to verify your identity by providing the same documentation you provided when you got your first license or ID card. You will need to visit any Iowa driver’s license or ID issuance location and bring documents that prove your identity, social security number, Iowa residency, and proof of legal name changes - if your name is different from the name on your identity document. You can use our helpful online tool to build a list of documents you need to bring with you.

You must obtain the REAL ID marking by making an appointment to appear in person at a DOT facility or receive service in person at a county issuance location. The REAL ID marking is not available the first time through online renewal or a kiosk.

Once the REAL ID star has been added to your card, you will be issued a REAL ID compliant card whenever you renew your license. To determine if you have a REAL ID compliant cards look for the star surrounded by a gold circle in the upper righthand corner of your Iowa issued, driver’s license or ID.

Sample DL

If your license or ID is up for renewal you can receive a REAL ID marked card for no additional cost. If you wish to receive the REAL ID marking on your card outside of your renewal period, it will cost $10, or the standard cost of a replacement card.

Customers are not required to get a REAL ID marked card. If you don’t plan to use your state-issued card to fly or enter a federal building you don’t need to worry about getting one. You may also use another acceptable form of ID in place of a REAL ID. In addition, having a REAL ID does not change your ability to use your Iowa driver’s license or ID for uses such as driving, renting a vehicle, writing a check, purchasing alcohol or tobacco, or entering a casino.


Contact: Darcy Doty at 515-203-1517 or [email protected]


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