On January 22, 2018, the CA DMV started to roll out the new REAL ID Driver License and ID Card. Now Californians have the option of requesting the federal compliant REAL ID Driver License or the federal non-compliant version.
The new REAL ID Driver License features images of golden poppies (the state’s flower), sailboats, an outline of the state through the background, and a Gold Rush miner to the card’s right side. Most importantly, the licenses will have new UV images, and will contain a white REAL ID star inside a golden bear logo signifying a federally compliant license.
The REAL ID is a federal-compliant identification document that will conform with the new federal requirements that will take effect October 1, 2020.
Currently, Californians can board domestic flights and enter secure federal facilities and military bases with their CA driver licenses and ID cards. After October 1, 2020, only federal approved identification documents such as the new REAL ID Driver License and ID Card, U.S. Passport, passport card, or military identification will be accepted for those purposes.
If you know you will not be boarding a domestic flight or visiting secure federal facilities or military bases, you do not need a REAL ID driver license or ID card.
The DMV will continue to issue the non-federal compliant driver license and ID Cards, and those will include a “Federal Limits Apply” designation.
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