West Bay

RI set to introduce 'Real ID' program by December 2018

CRANSTON, R.I. (WPRI) - The Massachusetts RMV is now offering drivers licenses that comply with the Federal "Real ID" Program.

The new licenses have a gold star in the upper right hand corner indicating it is a federally accepted "Real ID."

Real ID is set to be coming to Rhode Island near the end of this year or January 2019. The new Rhode Island licenses will also have the gold star in the upper right hand corner.

At this point in time it’s almost impossible to replicate," RI DMV administrator Bud Craddock said.

He says the new IDs will be more secure.
“So the individual that’s presenting that credential have been vetted so that they are who they say they are,” Craddock said.

All states will have to be compliant with the program by October 1, 2020. If they aren't, people will need a passport even to fly domestic. Rhode Island is currently on pace to have the program up by December 2018.

Since Craddock expects the DMV to be busier than usual, he’s asking people who have passports to not come in for the Real ID right away and instead to come in sometime between when they become available and October 1, 2020.

“That’ll take some of the load off people that don’t have a passport that have to come in to get the Real ID credential,” he said.

Also, if a person goes in during their regular renewal cycle, there won’t be any additional fees to switch to the Real ID.

Even though the program won’t be rolled out until December 2018 or January 2019, the DMV wants everyone to start getting documents ready now in preparation.

To switch to the Real ID, here is what the DMV needs:

  • Social security card or proof of social security
  • Birth certificate or passport
  • Two proofs of address
  • Proof of lawful residence in the United States

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