PennDOT to use existing photos for driver’s license renewals

REAL ID issuance remains suspended

The state Department of Transportation will use existing photos on file for customers who renew their driver’s license and identification card beginning this week.

Individuals who renewed their product on or before May 10 will receive a camera card in the mail and will need to visit a PennDOT Photo License Center to obtain an updated photo.

“Using a customer’s existing photo will help limit the number of people in our driver and photo license centers, and by extension, help reduce the risk of spreading COVID-19,” said Yassmin Gramian, acting PennDOT secretary. “This new process is not only a convenience, but it will help to keep our customers and staff safe.”

All customers who renew their driver’s license or photo ID card online or through the mail will receive a new product using the most recent photo of that individual that exists in PennDOT’s system.

No camera cards will be issued to these customers, and they will receive their new license or ID card by mail within 15 days, according to PennDOT. The renewal process is complete when the final product is received.

Further, expiration dates on driver’s licenses, photo ID cards, learner’s permits and camera cards between March 16 and May 31 have been extended until June 30.

Anyone planning to get a REAL ID at their time of renewal will receive a standard, “NOT FOR REAL ID PURPOSES” product. The issuance of REAL ID has been suspended as a mitigation effort in preventing the spread of COVID-19. The U.S. Department of Homeland Security has extended the REAL ID enforcement deadline until Oct. 1, 2021.

Once REAL ID issuance has resumed, customers with a non-REAL ID product may upgrade to a REAL ID and their new product will include any time remaining on their current product, plus an additional four years. PennDOT said customers won’t “lose” time that they’ve already paid for, and after the initial REAL ID product expires, there is no additional fee beyond regular renewal fees to renew a REAL ID product.


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