South Carolina residents can now get new driver's licenses and identification cards they will eventually need to meet federal ID requirements for boarding a commercial plane or visiting a military base.
Gov. Henry McMaster and South Carolina …
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Gov. Henry McMaster and South Carolina Department of Motor Vehicles Executive Director Col. Kevin Shwedo announced this week the new cards are available for purchase at all state Department of Motor Vehicle branches.
"We are grateful for Col. Shwedo's team at DMV that has done a tremendous job of quickly and diligently getting our new licenses and identification cards ready for distribution," McMaster said.
While the state now produces REAL ID cards, residents still have plenty of time to change current driver's licenses and identification cards to this federally approved card. South Carolina is under an extension for the implementation of the cards through Oct. 10, 2018, but since they are now available to the public, the state anticipates being "fully compliant" with the federal law in the "immediate future."
Once the state is certified compliant, residents can continue to use their current, unexpired license or ID to board domestic, commercial flights, enter secure federal facilities or visit military installations through Sept. 30, 2020.
"After months of testing, we're incredibly pleased with the product South Carolinans will now hold to prove their identity," Shwedo said. "This is the state's most secure card to date."
Residents who brought all required REAL ID documents to a DMV branch or know all the required documents are on file already with the agency can order a REAL ID from their home by visiting www.scdmvonline.com.
Follow a series of questions to see if you are eligible for online ordering. If so, you may purchase your REAL ID for $25. The SCDMV will use your current ID photo and mail a new license to the address on file. You must destroy your old card when you receive the new one - it will immediately become invalid.
The SCDMV now produces two kinds of licenses: REAL IDs that display a gold star in the top right corner and standard, non-compliant cards that say "not for federal identification." There is no charge or difference in price for the cards.
To board a domestic, commercial flight, enter a secure federal building or visit a military installation on or after Oct. 1, 2020, you must carry the REAL ID card with the gold star or another federally approved identification such as a valid U.S. passport or military ID.
To be eligible to purchase a REAL ID, you must already have on file or bring:
- Proof of identity (government-issued birth certificate or valid U.S. passport);
- Proof of Social Security number;
- Two proofs of current physical South Carolina address; and
- Proof of any and all legal name changes.
"Remember, you do not have to rush to the SCDMV to change your card," states a news release. "Unless your driver's license or ID is expiring, there's almost no reason to wait in line to change your card right now. You're encouraged to remember that cards are different, but you should not burden yourself with an immediate visit."
"Come to the SCDMV prepared with all of the correct documentation between now and Sept. 30, 2020, and when wait times are low, if you want to change your current card to a REAL ID. You may view real-time wait times for all of the state's locations at www.scdmvonline.com."
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