The Missouri Department of Revenue says it will begin issuing REAL ID -compliant driver licenses and nondriver identification cards beginning March 25. The move is the final step for Missouri to satisfy requirements of a federal law intended to prevent terrorism and fraud.
The IDs will be required to board commercial planes, enter nuclear power plants, and access federal sites, including military bases and federal courthouses.
“The Department of Revenue has been working hard toward achieving full implementation of the REAL ID Act, and I’m pleased to say we’re on schedule to do so later this month,” says Department of Revenue Director Joel Walters. “However, we want to stress to our customers that there’s no immediate need to rush to apply because the current Missouri-issued license and ID card will afford the same access as a REAL ID-compliant license or ID card until October 2020.”
The REAL ID had been controversial and still has critics across the state.
The Department anticipates increased foot traffic and longer wait times at license offices in the weeks immediately following the start of REAL ID-compliant license and ID card availability. Customers are encouraged to take advantage of the time between March 25, 2019, and Oct. 1, 2020, to apply for their REAL ID-compliant license or ID card.
“While we know many of our customers will ultimately choose to apply for a REAL ID-compliant license or ID card, we want to reiterate that doing so is a choice under Missouri law,” adds Walters. “Not every person will necessarily need a REAL ID-compliant license or ID card.”
The transaction and processing fees for a REAL ID license or ID card, new or renewal, will be the same as they are currently. Detailed fee information can be found at dor.mo.gov. Customers can apply for an early duplicate license or ID card outside of their regular renewal period, which is six months prior to the expiration of their license or ID card.
Missouri law allows for a one-time waiver of the duplicate transaction fee for persons who have not been issued a REAL ID-compliant license or ID card. License office processing fees, however, will not be waived and are $2.50 for a three-year issuance or $5 for a six-year issuance.