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mc government sealCounty Clerk Hanlon advises residents of one-year extension for compliance

FREEHOLD, NJ – Monmouth County Clerk Christine Giordano Hanlon is advising residents that the U.S. Department of Homeland Security has extended the enforcement deadline of the Federal REAL ID Act from October of 2020 to October 1, 2021, due to the COVID-19 pandemic. 

The federal government enacted the REAL ID Act after the September 11, 2001 terror attacks to require better secure identification for domestic travel and access to certain federal facilities. Residents will now have additional time to comply with the law.

According to the U.S. Department of Homeland Security, starting October of 2021, you must have a REAL ID compliant driver license/ID to fly within the U.S., unless you use a U.S. passport or another federally approved form of identification. Until that date, a Standard New Jersey driver license will be valid for air travel within the U.S.

Prior to the pandemic, the New Jersey Motor Vehicle Commission (MVC) had been issuing REAL ID driver license/IDs at the three MVC locations in Monmouth County; Eatontown, Freehold, and Hazlet, by appointment only. Now that the federal government has extended the compliance deadline by a full year, the pressure and anxiety of obtaining a REAL ID compliant ID is lifted for the time being. All MVC locations are currently closed through April 12 due to COVID-19.

“I encourage all Monmouth County residents to be mindful of the REAL ID Act compliance deadline of October 1, 2021 by obtaining a REAL ID or alternative, such as a U.S. passport, for future domestic travel by air or entrance to certain federal buildings,” said Clerk Hanlon.

For the full announcement from the U.S. Department of Homeland Security about the Federal REAL ID enforcement deadline extension, visit dhs.gov/real-id. For more information about the MVC and REAL IDs, visit state.nj.us/mvc/.