The Illinois state ID is designed for individuals who do not want to drive. Without a drivers license, it is important to get an ID card, as this will be required for certain banking activities, going to over-21 venues and so on. Because of the card’s many uses, and because it does not give you the ability to drive,  it is available to all residents of Illinois.

To obtain credentials, you must learn how to get a new ID, how much it costs and what documents you need to supply. It is also important to understand information surrounding the REAL ID, an identification program initiated by the Department of Homeland Security. Though Illinois does not currently offer REAL IDs, the state is federally required to do so soon. (You should pay special attention to this section if you do not have a passport and plan on flying domestically after October 1, 2020.)

Illinois DMV ID Requirements

The Illinois DMV state ID requirements are less strict than they are for licenses. First, there are no age restrictions. Some airports, in fact, require you to get a child ID card before your child will be allowed to fly. An ID card for minors in Illinois is also offered for free to individuals between the ages of 16 and 20 who are under the care of the state’s Department of Children and Family Services. Second, because this ID gives you no driving privileges, you do not need to take any exams. This includes medical exams.

The Illinois requirements do state that you must be a resident in order to get a card, but this does not mean you have to own or rent property in the state. Homeless residents can get government-issued ID credentials by bringing a completed Homeless Status Certification to the Secretary of State office. Note that this certification requires you to get the signature of an employee from the government agency from which you are currently receiving assistance.

Illinois ID card requirements also state that you are not allowed to hold both a driver’s license and ID card at the same time. If your driver’s license has not expired but you want to obtain an ID credential, instead, you will need to surrender the license to get the ID. An expired driver’s license may be used to prove your identity, but you do not need to surrender it in order to get your ID.

What do you need to get an ID in Illinois?

Many applicants think there will be fewer documents needed for state ID than there are for a license. Though there are different testing and age requirements, the document requirements are the same. The documents required for state ID applicants include proof of:

  • Your signature. This can be done with a debit or credit card, a passport, a Social Security card or a mortgage agreement.
  • Your birthdate. You can prove your date of birth with a birth certificate, passport, visa or DD214.
  • Your Social Security Number (SSN). This can be done with a Social Security card, Military ID or Social Security Award Letter.
  • Your residency. You can prove you reside in Illinois with a piece of official correspondence received from a government agency, a utility bill, report card or paystub.

These documents should not be laminated, faxes or facsimiles, however. Note that you will not be required to submit this documentation when getting a replacement DMV identification card, unless you need to change any of the information on the card.

People changing their addresses will need to prove their signatures and residency proof. If you need to change any other piece of information on your Illinois identity card, you will need to bring all four of the above document proofs.

How to Get an ID in Illinois

New residents often ask how to get ID online in Illinois, but, unfortunately, you do not have this option.  Instead, a Secretary of State employee needs to review your documentation and confirm your identity in person. This is the same reason why the state does not offer phone or by-mail application methods.

When determining where to get state ID in Illinois, you should look for the nearest Secretary of State office, which is the main headquarters for state-specific requests such as these.

To apply for ID, you need to go to the Secretary of State office with the four types of documents listed above. You do not need an appointment, however. If you have any questions regarding procedures, you can go to the Secretary of State’s online portal and find the number of the office you are looking to visit.

REAL ID Cards in Illinois

On October 1, 2020, a REAL ID card will be required for anyone wishing to board a domestic flight or seeking to present identification for federal purposes. A passport will be accepted as a substitute for a REAL ID, but a non-compliant driver’s license will not. You cannot apply for REAL ID credentials as of January 2019, though the Secretary of State plans to offer this form of identification in the upcoming months, as the federal deadline approaches. The documents required for REAL ID cards are held to a national standard, which means you will be required to show:

  • One document proving your identity.
  • One document proving your Social Security Number.
  • Two documents proving your residence.

Though Illinois’s new DMV ID is not currently available, you should check with the Secretary of State periodically before October 2, 2020 if you plan on flying domestically after that date. Alternatively, you may choose to get a passport.

How to Renew or Replace a State ID in Illinois

A lost ID card in Illinois can be replaced by going to a Secretary of State office and applying for a new one. You will receive a temporary replacement ID card, which will last for 90 days. This should be more than enough time for the duplicate sent by the Secretary of State to reach you in the mail.

If you have lost your ID while out of state, you need to call: 217-782-2720. This number allows you to request a temporary or duplicate ID, depending on how long you plan to be outside the state.

Note that the fee is the same as what you need to pay for your initial ID, if you are getting a permanent replacement. Discounts are provided for temporary IDs.

The ID renewal fee in Illinois varies, however. This fee will be listed on your renewal notice, which is sent out anywhere from 60 to 90 days before your ID is set to expire.

DMV ID Costs in Illinois

How much does an ID cost in Illinois? The answer varies based on your age:

  • The DMV ID cost for a child identification card is $10
  • The DMV ID price for adults between 18 and 64 years of age is $20
  • If you have a disability or are 65 or more years of age, you can get an ID for free

The prices for replacement IDs are slightly different. You will need to pay:

  • $5 for a temporary replacement.
  • $10 for a permanent state ID for minors replacement.
  • $20 for a permanent replacement, if you are between 18 and 64 years of age.
  • No fee if you are 65 or more years of age, or if you filled out a police report stating that your ID was stolen.
Last updated on Wednesday, March 4 2020.