Here’s what you need to get a Real ID in Virginia

Posted at 4:56 PM, Jul 26, 2019
and last updated 2019-07-26 18:38:41-04

VIRGINIA BEACH, Va. -  The line was wrapped around the building, and I was right in the middle of that line on a Saturday morning at the DMV on Buckner Boulevard in Virginia Beach as I was trying to get my license renewed earlier this month.

Trabelus Whitfield was also in line that day.

"So, the first Saturday I came, we thought we'd do well coming at 7:30 a.m. 'cause they open at 8 a.m., and the line was wrapped around the building," Whitfield said.

He was sent home like I was because we didn't have all the right paperwork to get something the DMV has been pushing -- Real ID.

Brandy Brubaker, a spokesperson for the DMV, says they have an active campaign about this.

"So, we just want to spread the word, especially Virginians that travel that beginning October 1, 2020, when those requirements change. If you want to use your Virginia driver's license to board a domestic flight, it has to have the Real ID star in it," Brubaker told News 3.

So, what exactly is the DMV is talking about? Check out the driver's license above and look at the upper right corner - if you want to fly without having to bring extra documents, you want to have the star.

"If you don't fly and maybe you are someone who travels by train or RV and you don't need it and you don't need to access a secure federal facility or military bases, you don't have to get a Real ID," Brubaker said.

And if you want to get a Real ID, you have to go to the DMV in person to get it; you can't do it online.

In order to get the Real ID, here's what you have to have:

  • a birth certificate or unexpired passport
  • your Social Security card or a W-2 form that will have your Social Security number on it
  • two things that can establish residency, such as:
    • an existing driver's licence
    • a voter ID
    • utility bill
    • mortgage or leasing agreement

As far as the most common mistake the DMV sees people committing, Brubaker says name changes are causing problems.

"If you're bringing your birth certificate and you've been married, your birth certificate probably has your maiden name on it where your current legal name is your married name, so you need to show how your name has changed to your current legal name, so you'll need to bring your marriage certificate with you," she said.

And there's another issue that has surfaced.

"We sometimes see people bringing the wrong type of birth certificate. It's important to bring the certified, state-issued birth certificate rather than the hospital one that will commonly have the little footprints on it."

For complete list of the necessary documents and your options, click here.