Real ID's soon to be needed for flying and entry to federal buildings

Monroe County Clerk Larry Sloan stands with a poster displaying the benefits of getting a Real ID. The IDs will be mandatory for plane flights and entering certain federal buildings starting in October 2020. Monroe County has been providing the IDs for about a week.

If you tend to fly the friendly skies or regularly spend time in federal government buildings, you have probably heard you need something called a “Real ID.”

If you are looking to get one, Monroe County can now help you out.

Monroe County Clerk Larry Sloan, whose office dispenses driver’s licenses and license plates, said his office started printing the Real IDs last week and so far have had about 15 people ask for them.

“This was originally thought of after 9/11,” Sloan said. “It’s taken it a while to get going, but states have started implementing it the last few years and it will be a federal law starting in October 2020.”

The Real IDs will not be a totally new card. It will just be your driver’s license with a gold star on it. And while it will not cost any extra, you will need to have several forms of identity to get the gold star on your license.

These items are one of the following proving citizenship: official birth certificate; U.S. certificate of consular report of birth abroad; valid, unexpired U.S. passport or pass card; certificate of citizenship; certificate of naturalization; or a valid, unexpired 10-year permanent resident card issued by DHS or INS.

One of the following with social security number on it: social security card, metal cards not acceptable; payroll check stub; W-2 for current tax year or dated within last 12 months; 1099 form for current tax year or dated within last 12 months.

And two of the following proving current residency: utility, telephone, electric, water, gas, or cable bills; current vehicle registration within 12 months; Tennessee vehicle title showing address; mortgage paper such as deed or payment book; copy of lease agreement or contract; voter registration card; Military LES papers listing Tennessee as home of record.

If you want a Real ID, but are not in any hurry, you can get it the next time you renew your license at no extra cost. If you need one immediately, you can get it for $12 and you will get a new license with a new picture and the gold star, but your license will still expire at the same time.

Sloan said that women who have been married more than once will also need to provide proof of each time their named changed.

“They’re very strict about knowing who you are and when you had a different last name,” he said.

The Real IDs have not added any extra cost or employees to the clerk’s office. Sloan said he trained some employees to handle the paperwork that comes with the gold star going on a license.

“The paperwork is what takes forever,” he said. “Getting the ID together is pretty much the same as doing a regular license. There are just a lot more forms to take care of.”

A regular license still works for driving and as a form of general identification for such things as voting, purchasing alcohol or cigarettes, accessing hospitals, visiting the post office, accessing federal courts that do not require a Real ID and applying for federal benefits such as Social Security or veteran’s benefits.

The Real ID is not a national ID card as it is being issued by counties and states. There will not be any more people have access to your personal information than already have it and it does not have an RFID chip, though it does have security features that make it resistant to counterfeiting.

Sloan said that while his office is open 8 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. Monday, Tuesday, Thursday and Friday and 8:30 a.m. to noon on Wednesday and Saturday, they stop taking people in for licenses at 4 p.m. and 11:30 a.m. in order to start processing of the licenses and IDs.

And like with a driver’s license, you will receive a paper license at first as the actual licenses are handled by a company in Washington state.

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