SHREVEPORT, La. (KTAL/LMSS) — The REAL ID enforcement date is fast approaching and the Louisiana Office of Motor Vehicles is urging residents to prepare now.

The federal REAL ID Act places new rules on which forms of identification may be used to board flights within the United States and enter certain federal facilities such as a military base, federal courthouse, and other federal facilities.

The Louisiana Office of Motor Vehicles states if your driver’s license is not up for renewal, applicants do not need to obtain one prior to May 7, 2025.

According to the Department of Homeland Security, your passport is not another option. ‘Starting May 7, 2025, every state and territory resident will need to present a REAL ID compliant license/ID.’ However, children under 18 do not need to provide identification when traveling with an adult within the U.S.

REAL ID-compliant cards will have of one the following markings on the upper top portion of the card. Courtesy of
REAL ID-compliant cards will have of one the following markings on the upper top portion of the card. Courtesy of:

In Louisiana, REAL ID-compliant licenses are indicated by a little star in the top right corner.

According to the Transport Security Administration, adult passengers 18 years and older must show a valid REAL ID or permanent residency card, federally recognized, state-issued Enhanced Drivers Licenses (EDLs), Tribal Nation / Indian Tribe, U.S. Citizen, or an Immigration Services Employment Authorization Card.

Domestic travelers without a compliant license will not be permitted through TSA security checkpoints.

If your driver’s license or state-issued ID expired on or after March 1, 2020, and you are unable to renew at your state driver’s license agency, you may still use it as acceptable identification at the checkpoint. 

If you are traveling internationally you will still need your passport. If you are traveling domestically, you will only need one valid form of identification – either your REAL ID or another acceptable alternative such as a passport, not both.

According to the DHS, non-U.S. citizens are only eligible to receive a temporary (limited term) REAL ID-compliant driver’s license or ID card with a validity period no longer than the period of authorized stay within the United States.

You need proof of the following:

  • A valid, unexpired United States passport or passport card
  • Original birth certificate
  • evidence of lawful status in the United States
  • Social security number (W-2 Tax form with applicant’s full or partial security number) and;
  • Two proofs of principal residence such as utility bills or financial statements (health insurance statements or explanation of benefits.

Louisiana law requires a license holder to be eligible to renew their license up to 180 days prior to or upon expiration. 

Online application or in-person with the Louisianan Office of Motor Vehicles.

Louisiana residents can apply for a REAL ID at locations including North Shreveport Auto Title, Louisiana Auto Title Services, and Jackson Auto Title in Bossier City.