All Citizens Must Have "REAL ID" By 2009
WASHINGTON, PRNewswire-USNewswire-- Under the final REAL ID regulations issued Friday by the Department of Homeland Security (DHS), states will be required to verify Social Security numbers and immigration status before issuing driver's licenses beginning in October 2009. Residents of states that resist compliance with REAL ID could find their driver's license rendered useless for federal identification purposes as early as May 2008. These regulations represent an important breakthrough in the effort to enhance homeland security and the enforcement of laws against illegal immigration, says the Federation for American Immigration Reform (FAIR).
After formal comments submitted by the Immigration Reform Law Institute (IRLI), the legal affiliate of FAIR, final regulations now require verification of Social Security numbers and immigration status before a license may be issued and, unlike many of the other provisions of REAL ID, will be implemented by October 2009.
"Establishing that all people with state-issued driver's licenses or ID cards are legal residents of the United States is crucial to the effort to protect our nation's security and control mass immigration," commented Dan Stein, president of FAIR. "Preventing people who have no legal right to be in the country from obtaining these documents will make it more difficult to live and work here in violation of the law. This objective was the driving rationale behind the REAL ID Act."