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N.J. Prepares For Tougher Identity Requirements For Driver’s License Applicants

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By Molly Daly and Robin Rieger

TRENTON, N.J. (CBS) - New Jersey drivers will soon need to meet new requirements to get or renew their driver’s licenses.

Starting May 7th, the state will start issuing licenses that comply with the “Federal Real ID Act,” passed after the September 11th attacks to tighten security and crack down on ID fraud.

“If you’re going to travel on an airplane, if you’re going to enter a federal building, you’re going to have to show a federally compliant driver license,” said Martinez.

New Jersey Motor Vehicle Commission chairman Raymond Martinez says applicants will need to provide several documents.

“Proof of legal identity, proof of lawful presence in the US, proof of Social Security number, and proof of principal residence,” he says.

And those documents have to be current — no more expired passports.

The DMV also won’t accept P.O. boxes as an address anymore. Two proofs of address will be required instead of one. Among the things you can use are current utility or credit card bills, bank statements, property tax bill or rental agreement.

The new licenses will be phased in, starting with younger drivers. As for older ones, they’ll have a little more time to comply.

“I’m for anything that will improve any security like that. Obviously with things that happened in the past,” said Joe Marmo of Moorestown.

“People who were born before December 1st, 1964, we’ll let them renew their driver license by mail, and they don’t even have to come to Motor Vehicles for four years,” Martinez says.

New Jersey will be the ninth state to start issuing the licenses with the star. Martinez says Delaware will participate but says many states are opposing compliance. Pennsylvania had a bill to oppose participation recently passed out government committee last week. Governor Corbett’s press office was looking into where the bill currently stands.

The new licenses — called “Tru ID” — will have a gold star in the upper righthand corner. They’ll cost $48 instead of $24, and will be good for eight years.  More details at njmvc.gov.

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