Governor Henry McMaster's signature on House Bill 3358 means the SCDMV can begin working towards full compliance and implementation of the federal REAL ID Act of 2005. REAL ID-compliant beginner's permit, driver's licenses, or identification cards will not be available until late 2017, at the earliest.

The state anticipates receiving additional extensions, annually, at the minimum.

The SCDMV will release additional information regarding REAL ID in this state on May 1, 2017.

It will be optional to change your SC license or ID to a REAL ID-compliant card. You do not need a REAL ID-compliant license or ID to do any of the following:

  • Drive
  • Vote
  • Apply for or receive federal benefits for which you're entitled (Veterans Affairs, Social Security Administration)
  • Enter a federal facility that does not require an ID (i.e. a post office)
  • Access a hospital or receive life-saving services
  • Participate in law enforcement proceedings or investigations (serve on a federal jury, testify in federal court, etc.)

The United States Congress passed the REAL ID Act of 2005 as a result of the 9/11 Commission’s recommendation to standardize government-issued identifications, like driver’s licenses. This is a federal law that affects federal agencies, federal buildings, and military bases. If you live in a non-compliant state, your state-issued license or ID will not be accepted to enter certain federal facilities in the future. At this time, SC law does not allow the state’s compliance with REAL ID.

The SCDMV will continuously release information regarding the status of REAL ID as it’s confirmed. Follow the agency on Twitter and Facebook. You may email any questions to The SCDMV will use your questions for guidance on what needs to be addressed in the future. In the meantime, visit DHS’s website.

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