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Notary Notes

DHS Grants Extension to Comply with REAL ID

by PAN
The U.S. Department of Homeland Security (DHS) has granted Pennsylvania a five-month extension to comply with the REAL ID Act of 2005, based on assurances from Gov. Tom Wolf and state lawmakers that they are "committed to resolving this issue during our new legislative session, which began on January 3, 2017."

The extension, through June 6, 2017, means that individuals may continue to use their Pennsylvania driver's licenses and identification cards to enter federal facilities.

In granting the extension, DHS warned that failure to take the necessary steps needed to meet all of the REAL ID requirements "may result in the denial of future extensio requests, thereby making Pennsylvania subject to REAL ID enforcement."

To comply with REAL ID, Pennsylvania needs to put a DHS-approved security marking on its driver's licenses and ID cards, and must require individuals to appear in person to get a new card when there is any material change in personal identifiable information since the prior card was issued.

Some nine million driver's licenses and 1.4 million non-driver identification cards must be replaced, at an estimated cost of $250 million to $300 million.

REAL ID does not affect the use of driver's licenses or identification cards for purposes such as voting, registering to vote, or for receiving federal benefits.

See the DHS response online at


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