The Facts about Identification Cards
Identification cards are used for individuals who either do not or cannot drive, and therefore do not hold a driver’s license. The purpose of the identification card is to provide a form of identification that can be used to verify an individual’s age, although it can go further by verifying a signature or state residency.
It is very useful for an individual without a license to have an identification card. Having one can allow the individual to view R-rated movies, purchase alcohol and tobacco, board a plane, cash a check, enter bars and night clubs, registering to vote, becoming an organ donor, or check into a hotel without needing a license.
The individuals who usually obtain an identification card include:
Individuals who do not have a driver’s license due to personal preference
Individuals who do not have a driver’s license because of age restrictions
Individuals who have had their driver’s licenses suspended
A State identification card is usually almost nearly identical to a driver’s license, although somewhere on the card it will state that the card is just for identification purposes only. This can also apply to age-dependent licenses, where a 21 and over ID may have a certain orientation or color that corresponds to that of a driver’s license for an individual who is over 21.
A state may also provide different types of identification cards. For example, Illinois allows the issuing of three different identification cards. They are for individuals over 65 (a Senior Card), an individual under 65, and an individual who is disabled.
How to Obtain an Identification Card
For all states, identification cards can be obtained through the local Department of Motor Vehicles or equivalent driver agency. All states require certain pieces of information and documents in order to issue an identification card to an individual. In order to receive an identification card, an individual may have to show:
Proof of identity
Proof of age
Proof of residence (particularly residence in that state)
Valid social security number or social security ineligibility
What Else to Know About Identification Cards
Depending on the state, there are different procedures involving identification cards. Typically, states charge between $10-20 for an identification card, but the prices can heavily vary. For example, an identification card costs only $8 in Montana, but costs $44.50 in Oregon.
If an identification card is lost or stolen or has expired, each Department of Motor Vehicles or equivalent agencies has certain procedures set in order to replace the identification card. Depending on the situation and state, there can be a replacement or renewal fee that is similar to the cost of initially getting the card. It is usually necessary to bring the forms of identification and proof of information during these circumstances.