Missourians with travel plans in 2018 received good news (last week) as the Department of Homeland Security granted Missouri an extension to implement REAL-ID compliant driver licenses. The extension means Missourians will be able to use their current forms of identification to fly domestically and enter federal facilities until Oct. 10 of next year.
During the 2017 legislative session, the Missouri General Assembly approved legislation to allow residents to obtain a photo ID that is compliant with the federal REAL ID Act. Because the current version of the Missouri driver’s license is not compliant, DHS announced in January of 2016 that Missourians would not be able to enter federal facilities and would not be able to fly domestically beginning in 2018. The federal government granted an extension to allow Missourians to continue to use their existing IDs for these purposes until January 22, and now the new extension gives Missourians additional months to utilize their existing licenses.
The state will continue to work toward the implementation of the new REAL ID-compliant licenses, and is on track to have them in place by March 2019. The state will have to apply for a second waiver next year in order to cover the gap between October, when the current waiver expires, and March, when the new IDs will be in circulation.