Michigan licenses need to be REAL ID-compliant in 2021

Michigan Real ID Drivers LicenseBeginning Oct. 1, 2021, all Michigan residents will need a REAL ID license to fly within the United States and enter certain federal facilities under federal law.  You can tell if your license is compliant by looking at your driver’s license or state identification card.  REAL ID will have a star in a gold circle printed on it or the American flag if you have an enhanced license.  Enhanced licenses and IDs are compliant and do not have to be updated.  

How to apply for the REAL ID

To apply for a compliant driver’s license or state identification card, you’ll need to bring your valid U.S. passport or certified birth certificate with a raised seal or stamp to any Secretary of State office. You can also use another document to verify your identity from the Michigan Secretary of State accepted documents list

How Much Does a REAL ID cost?

You can find out the various fees at this link for Michigan Secretary of State driver’s license fees. There is no additional cost for a REAL ID-compliant license or state identification card when a person usually renews. Applying for a compliant license before your current license expires will result in a correction fee. 

If your license renews after Oct. 1, 2021, and you elect not to get a REAL ID, it will still be valid. You can always use it as valid identification for cashing checks, purchasing alcohol, or entering casinos. But, you will have to have an approved, compliant document when you fly on an airplane or enter federal buildings because your standard license will not be accepted.

What Happens if you do not get a REAL ID

If your driver’s license or state ID card is not REAL ID compliant, you have to show another form of acceptable documentation, such as a valid U.S. passport or passport card. The Transportation Security Administration has published a list of accepted documents. After Oct. 1, 2021, this is the requirement to board a plane for domestic travel and to enter certain federal facilities or military bases.

What identification do you need for Minors In Michigan?

Finally, children under age 18 will not need to provide identification when traveling with an adult within the United States. The adult will need to provide acceptable identification.  You can find out more about Child ID’s at Michigan State ID for Children.