Real ID

REAL ID Act enacted by the Federal Government sets standards for the issuance of sources of identification, such as driver's licenses.

Will a federal agency accept my Enhanced Driver's License?

Yes. State-issued Enhanced Driver's Licenses (EDLs) are designated as acceptable border-crossing documents by DHS under the Western Hemisphere Travel Initiative and are acceptable alternatives for official federal purposes such as accessing a Federal facility or boarding a commercial aircraft. Individual agency policies may still apply.

Michigan, Minnesota, New York, Vermont, and Washington are the only states that currently issue EDLs.

What type of licenses and ID cards does the DHS currently accept to access its buildings and facilities and at TSA checkpoints?

Until full enforcement of REAL ID begins on October 1, 2021, DHS and its component agencies, including TSA at its airport security checkpoints, will continue to accept for identification purposes all Vermont Driver’s Licenses and ID cards, as Vermont has been recognized as a Real ID compliant.

What happens when the REAL ID enforcement date begins?

Federal agencies, including DHS and TSA, may only accept state-issued driver’s licenses and identification cards as identification for purposes of accessing federal facilities - including TSA airport security checkpoints - if the license or card was issued by a REAL ID compliant state in accordance with the REAL ID security standards (meaning the license or card must include the REAL ID compliant star marking).

What is REAL ID?

Passed by Congress in 2005, the REAL ID Act enacted the 9/11 Commission's recommendation that the Federal Government “set standards for the issuance of sources of identification, such as driver's licenses.” The Act established minimum security standards for state-issued driver's licenses and identification cards and prohibits Federal agencies from accepting for official purposes licenses and identification cards from states that do not meet these standards. These purposes are:

Can a business refuse to accept my Vermont license for identification?

The primary purpose of a Driver’s license is to establish the holder of that license has the minimum skills required to safely operate a motor vehicle. Many entities have decided that this driving document can be accepted as proof of ID. The department does not have any authority to mandate that other entities accept our driving documents as proof of ID. 

Note that Vermont is Real ID compliant. The Vermont Driver Privilege Card is Not Real ID compliant.  See more on Real ID here

 

License Comparison

16 June 2020
A comparison of the various license types available in Vermont. This includes Enhanced Driver's License (EDL), Commercial Driver's License (CDL), Real ID & Driver's Privilege Card (DPC). It also includes a document checklist to determine what is required for each license type and a brief description of what each card type can and cannot be used for.

Is an Enhanced Driver’s License (EDL) or Non-Driver ID (EID) acceptable for Real ID compliance?

Yes, the Vermont EDL & EID are designated as acceptable border-crossing documents by DHS under the Western Hemisphere Travel Initiative (WHTI). Vermont EDL & EID are acceptable for official Federal purposes (i.e., boarding a commercial aircraft, accessing a federal facility, or entering a nuclear power plant).

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Vermont Department of Motor Vehicles
120 State Street
Montpelier, VT 05603-0001

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