On September 16, 2021, Sand Hill CIO Brenda Vingiello, CFA joined the CNBC Halftime Report panel once again and discussed what positive catalysts investors canread more
It’s Time to Get REAL, California
If Dante’s Inferno had named a 10th circle of hell, it might have been called the “Line at the Department of Motor Vehicles (DMV)”. The experience is typically so painful, you try everything to avoid it. But before October 1, 2020, you may choose to spend some time at the DMV to save yourself an even greater headache in the future. That is because October 1, 2020 is when the California Driver’s License you are currently carrying will be good for driving and as identification within the State of California, but not an approved form of Federal ID. So, if you’re planning a vacation involving air travel next Fall – even if it involves flying domestically – you won’t be able to use your old CA Driver’s License to get through security.
In 2005, Congress passed the REAL ID Act to establish minimum security standards for the issuance of identification cards, including driver’s licenses. The goal of this coordinated effort by the states and federal government is to inhibit terrorists’ ability to use fraudulent identification. The Department of Homeland Security moved forward with a phased enforcement of the act in 2013 and most states have already complied. California has been late to the party and is now on its second extension of the rollout of the updated license, which gives Californians until the end of September 2020 to get the REAL ID.
How do I get the REAL ID?
You must appear in person at the DMV to get the federally compliant REAL ID. As expected, scheduling an appointment ahead of time is highly recommended unless you have nothing but time (and brain cells) to kill! At your appointment, you will need to provide documentation from an approved list to prove: (1) your identity, (2) your Social Security number, and (3) California residency. Go to www.dmv.ca.gov and click on “List of documents to apply for a REAL ID” to see the full list that range from your birth certificate to a utility bill.
Maybe I already have the REAL ID?
A California REAL ID has a golden bear in the upper right-hand corner and an image of California poppies in the lower left-hand corner. When exposed to ultraviolet light, the Golden Gate Bridge and Coit Tower are revealed. There were 2.3 million REAL ID cards issued before the end of 2018 when it was discovered that California hadn’t followed the proper protocol outlined by the federal government by requiring only one form of identification instead of two. For these lucky (or unlucky depending on your point of view) cardholders, they will be allowed to use the REAL ID they’ve been issued until it expires. At that point, they will be required to provide a second form of ID at the DMV to have a real REAL ID issued.
What if I don’t comply?
There is no requirement that you get the REAL ID. If you don’t have time before October 1, 2020 or just don’t want to deal with it because you have a few more years before your current license expires, that’s fine. However, you must have a valid passport for all travel – even domestic! – and to access federal facilities like military bases and federal courthouses.
Will I have to take the test?
In a cruel twist of fate, if you apply for the CA REAL ID more than 60 days before your license expires, you will be required to take the written test in addition to getting a new photo and taking the vision test. Why? Why?!?! Because you’ve essentially shortened the time that the DMV can judge that you’re a safe driver by renewing ‘too early’. If you’re able to schedule the appointment to get the REAL ID just before your birthday, consider yourself lucky… the first available appointments are now several months out.
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