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Montana officially compliant with REAL ID laws

Posted at 1:40 PM, Apr 22, 2019
and last updated 2019-04-23 12:25:48-04

HELENA – After years of work to implement REAL ID licenses and ID cards, the Department of Homeland Security said Monday Montana is officially compliant with the REAL ID Act of 2005.

Over the past several years, Montana relied on extensions as it worked to put infrastructure in place to handle the new IDs.

“We acquired the necessary equipment to implement REAL ID, hire and train new staff, and give Montanans the information they need to decide if a REAL ID license or ID is right for them,” Sarah Garcia, MVD Administrator, stated in a news release.

MVD began issuing the new IDs in January. The switch to a REAL ID is voluntary, but without one, you cannot board domestic flights or enter federal facilities unless you have a passport after Oct. 1, 2020.

The cost to upgrade to a real ID varies depending on if you are renewing or getting a license for the first time. You can calculate the fees on the new real ID website.

-Jacob Fuhrer reporting for MTN News