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REAL IDs will be available in the spring of 2019, and if you decide that REAL ID is right for you, there are proactive steps you can take now to ensure you are ready. PennDOT will need to verify your identity, your social security number, and your Pennsylvania residency, even if you already have a Pennsylvania driver's license or photo ID card.
Beginning in September 2018, PennDOT's 71 Driver's License Centers will be equipped to verify these documents for customers who want a REAL ID. The best thing you can do to prepare is to gather the below documents now and keep them in a safe place.
All documents MUST be original versions or certified copies (if applicable) — no photocopies will be accepted.
Want to make sure you have everything you need? Download our printable REAL ID Document Checklist!
Proof of Identity and Lawful Status
You will need to provide ONE document proving your identity and your lawful status in the United States when applying for a REAL ID.
If you are a U.S. citizen, acceptable documents include:
- A United States birth certificate with a raised seal, issued by an authorized government agency, including U.S. territories and Puerto Rico
- Please note: souvenir or hospital certificates will not be accepted — it must be an original or certified copy filed with a U.S. state or territory office of vital statistics or equivalent agency in your state of birth
- A United States passport or passport card
- Certificate of U.S. Citizenship (USCIS Form N-560) or Consular Report of Birth Abroad (DOS Form FS-240)
- Certificate of Naturalization (USCIS Form N-550 or N-570)
If you do not have your birth certificate in your possession, you need to contact your state or county Department of Health office in the state of your birth and request an original or certified copy. Some states may take up to six months to process duplicate birth certificates, so it is advisable to begin this process right away.
If you are a lawful permanent resident, acceptable documents include:
- I-551 Permanent Resident Card (Green Card)
- Passport with I-551 stamp
- Machine-readable Immigrant Visa
- Re-entry Permit I-327
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Additional information for non-U.S. citizens can be found here.
Proof of Social Security Number
You must present your social security card when applying for a REAL ID. Your card must be original, and it cannot be laminated. The name on your social security card MUST MATCH the name on your current product.
If you do not have your social security card in your possession, you can get a replacement card from the Social Security Administration at no cost, and you may qualify to order a replacement card online. Visit the Social Security Administration's websiteOpens In A New Window for details and information on obtaining a replacement card. If you need to visit a Social Security office to obtain a replacement card, use this tool to find the location nearest you.Opens In A New Window
If you do not have a social security number, you must provide an original copy of your SSA ineligibility letter.
Proof of your Pennsylvania Residency
You will need to provide TWO documents to prove your Pennsylvania residency when applying for a REAL ID. Examples of acceptable residency documents include:
- Current, unexpired PA driver's license or photo ID card
- A computer-generated utility bill showing your name and address
- A W-2 form
- Tax records
- Lease agreements or mortgage documents
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Proof of Legal Name, Date of Birth and/or Gender Designation Change (if applicable)
If your current legal name, date of birth, or gender designation is different from the information on your birth certificate or legal status document, you must show legal proof of the change. Acceptable documents supporting a change include:
- Name change or date of birth:
- Marriage certificate or divorce decree
- Court order approving a change of legal name or date of birth
- Original or certified copy of an amended birth certificate showing a change of name
- Gender designation:
- A certified, amended birth certificate with a raised seal
- A completed DL-32 form (PDF)