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Californians encouraged to secure their REAL ID now 


– The California Department of Motor Vehicles (DMV) reports that nearly 16.9 million Californians have obtained a REAL ID, reflecting an increase of 121,501 from the previous month.

“Resolving to get your REAL ID is one of the easiest goals you can set for 2024,” said DMV Director Steve Gordon. “Losing weight and saving for retirement takes time. You can get a REAL ID in a matter of minutes.”

To apply for a REAL ID, Californians are directed to visit, complete the online application, and upload the required documents. Subsequently, customers must visit a DMV office and present the uploaded documents to finalize the application. Initiating the process online should streamline the in-office experience to approximately 15 minutes. The following documents are required:

  • Proof of identity – One original or certified document (e.g., valid passport, birth certificate). Legal name change documents are necessary if the name on the proof of identity differs from the name on other documents (e.g., marriage certificate, adoption papers).
  • Proofs of California residency – Two documents in paper copies (e.g., utility bill, bank statement).
  • Social Security number (exceptions may apply).


For a comprehensive list of acceptable documents and access to the online application, individuals are encouraged to visit

The California DMV emphasizes that there is no need to wait until the federal enforcement date of May 7, 2025, which mandates a REAL ID or other federally approved document for boarding flights within the United States and accessing secure federal facilities.

Historical REAL ID data indicates the following:

Total REAL ID cardholders as of Jan. 1, 2024: 16,870,178
Total REAL ID cardholders as of Jan. 1, 2023: 14,937,510

Online services have been expanded by the DMV to facilitate various transactions, with most tasks not requiring an in-person visit. Customers are encouraged to use online services and other channels for eligible driver’s license and vehicle registration renewals. To sign up for paperless vehicle registration and driver’s license renewal notices, customers must log in or create a secure online account at and then opt in.


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The news staff of the Paso Robles Daily News wrote or edited this story from local contributors and press releases. The news staff can be reached at