Since the deadline to get a STAR ID approaches, Gov. Kay Ivey encouraged Alabama to prepare now for October 2020.
According to the Alabama Law Enforcement Agency (ALEA) website, Ivey and ALEA Secretary Hal Taylor, on Tuesday, Oct. 1, kicked off the countdown to the federal deadline requiring a more secure identification to fly domestically on commercial aircraft and to enter military bases and certain federal facilities. Ivey urged Alabama citizens to obtain a STAR ID, which stands for “secure, trusted and reliable identification.” She said it’s fully compliant with the federal REAL ID Act of 2005.
“On Oct. 1, 2020, all air travelers will need a STAR ID for commercial domestic flights and to visit certain federal facilities,” Ivey said. “Those who hold a valid, unexpired U.S. passport may opt to use it for domestic air travel. If there is a chance you will need one, I encourage you to obtain this more secure version of Alabama’s driver license or non-driver ID card within the next few months to ensure you are prepared by the federal deadline.”
According to ALEA, the STAR ID is Alabama’s version of the REAL ID program that was developed approximately nine years ago to comply with federal legislation. In response to the terrorist attacks of Sept. 11, 2001 and the ongoing threat of terrorist activity, Taylor said the legislation modified federal law pertaining to security, authentication and issuance procedure standards for driver licenses and non-driver IDs. STAR ID was first introduced in the fall of 2011, and he said more than 450,000 have been issued as of October.
It’s imperative everyone considers acquiring a STAR ID within the next few months, Taylor said. To save time, he said members of the public may go to the Driver License Division page on ALEA’s website to schedule an appointment at one of ALEA’s Driver License Examining Offices.
“License commissioner and probate offices across the state will still offer driver license and ID renewals and duplicates, but you must visit one of our agency’s Driver License offices to obtain your first STAR ID,” Taylor said, stressing the importance of bringing along required documents proving one’s identity. “Customers will be turned away if they do not present the following paperwork to Driver License examiners: a birth certificate — original or certified copy — or valid, unexpired U.S. passport, a Social Security card and two documents verifying address of principal residence. ALEA’s website features a list of accepted documents, as well as further information on the STAR ID program.”
During a press conference, Aviation Council of Alabama Executive Director Lynn Weldon said Transportation Security Administration (TSA) does provide a list of accepted alternative forms of ID on its website but having a STAR ID would simplify the trip through airport security.
“Let’s not wait until the last minute,” Ivey said. “Obtain your STAR ID today.”
To get a STAR ID, Marshall County Probate Judge Andrea LeCroy said it costs $36.25.
“One important point is that they must first go to the examiners office initially to receive the star on their driver’s license/identification card,” LeCroy said. “After that they are able to renew at the probate office.”
She said starting Nov. 2, the driver’s license office in Huntsville on Church Street is open Saturdays from 7 a.m. – 3 p.m., which is another way to make the process more accessible to the public. If anyone has any questions, she said to contact the County Probate Office at 256-571-7764 and select “option one” or visit alea.gov.
STAR IDs are issued originally to qualified individuals only at Alabama Law Enforcement Agency Driver License exam offices — the local, qualified office is the Marshall County Courthouse, located at 357 Blount Avenue in Guntersville.
Once the provision of the REAL ID Act — STAR ID — goes into effect, Taylor said individuals who do not have an unexpired U.S. passport would need an Alabama STAR ID to board commercial aircraft for domestic flights or to enter certain regulated federal facilities.
In order to be issued a STAR ID, he said applicants must present four documents to verify identity/date of birth, Social Security number and address of principal residence.
The accepted documents applicants to verify identity and date of birth by providing one of the following documents:
•Valid, unexpired United States Passport
•Certified Birth Certificate
•Consular Report of Birth Abroad (Form FS-240, DS-1350, or FS-545
•Valid, unexpired Permanent Resident Card (Form I-551) issued by Department of Homeland Security (DHS) or Immigration and Naturalization Service (INS)
• Unexpired employment authorization document (EAD) issued by DHS (Form I-766 or Form I-688B)
•Unexpired Foreign Passport with a valid, unexpired U.S. Visa affixed, accompanied by the approved I-94 form documenting the applicant’s most recent admittance into the United States.
•Certificate of Naturalization issued by DHS (Form N-550 or N-570)
•Certificate of Citizenship issued by DHS (Form N-560 or N-561)
Note: If the applicant’s name has changed from that displayed on the document produced (marriage, adoption, court order, etc.), official documents verifying this change will be required.
Applicants must verify Social Security Numbers by providing one of the following documents:
•Social Security card
•United States Military Form DD 214
•Medicare/Medicaid Identification Card (if Social Security Number is followed by the letter A)
•W-2 Tax Form
•Applicants must verify their address of principal residence by providing any two of the following documents:
•Voter Registration Card
•Residential Mortgage Contract
•Current Lease or Rental agreement for housing
•Proof of payment of residential property tax (Homestead)
•Previous year tax returns bearing applicants address
•Vehicle registration bearing applicants name and address
•Utility bill (Water, Gas, or Electric) less than 90 days old
•Any State or Federal Court documents indicating residence address
•School enrollment documentation
•Defense Department Form 214 (Report of Separation)
•Sex offender registration documents
•Current Homeowners insurance policy with name and address
•Social Security benefits statements/summary mailed to physical address
•U.S. or State Government check or other document mailed to applicants’ physical address
•Military Orders documenting duty station and place of residence.
Note: If utility bills or other similar documents feature the name of the applicant’s spouse or parent, the applicant must produce a marriage certificate or birth certificate verifying residence address.
For more information, visit alea.gov/dps/driver-license/star-id.