By Tony Romeo

HARRISBURG, PA (CBS) — PennDOT is advising Pennsylvania residents to start thinking now about the documents they will need to get REAL ID compliant driver’s licenses and ID cards.

Those cards won’t be available before spring of 2019, but the application process will begin sooner.

For the drivers who got their first PA license or ID after September 2003, the documents needed for REAL ID should already be in the PennDOT system. In March, you’ll be able to go online to confirm that.

If it turns out not to be the case, or for everyone else, you will need proof of identity – either an original or certified birth certificate with a raised seal, or a valid passport; a social security card; proof of all legal name changes, and two proofs of current Pennsylvania address.

“The best thing to do is to start going to all of your safe places – whether that’s a safety deposit box or a drawer or whatever – and make sure that you’ve got all of these things in order,” said Alexis Campbell with PennDOT.

If you need replacements, remember some states take up to six months to issue duplicate birth certificates.

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