Customers may apply for a state ID in Montana if they wish to obtain a secure form of identification, as this document can be used as proof of age, address and identity. Additionally, an ID card is available to residents of all ages, even those who are too young to drive motor vehicles in the state. While this type of credential does not provide Montana residents with driving privileges, cardholders may present this document whenever they need proof of their age or identity.

In addition to an identification card, Montana residents may obtain a REAL ID-compliant credential if they wish to simplify the process of entering federal facilities or boarding commercial aircrafts. While obtaining a REAL ID-compliant credential is not mandatory, qualifying residents may purchase this type of card through the Motor Vehicle Division (MVD), under the State Department of Justice (DOJ). To learn more about applying for identification credentials, review the information below.

Montana DMV ID Requirements

As part of the Montana DMV state ID requirements, applicants may qualify for non-driver identification credentials if they do not hold a valid driving license or ID from any other state or jurisdiction. Additionally, applicants must reside in the state of Montana to complete the application process successfully.

While there are no minimum age restrictions for obtaining a non-driver identification credential in Montana, under the state ID card requirements, minors may only register to become organ donors if they are at least 15 years of age during the time of application.

What do you need to get an ID in Montana?

When applying for an identification credential, applicants must submit:

  • A Social Security Number (SSN). If an applicant’s name has changed before he or she applies for a new identification credential, the customer must first update his or her name through the Social Security Administration (SSA).
  • Proof of authorized presence in the U.S. Several acceptable documents include an original or a certified copy of a birth certificate, a valid U.S. passport, a Certificate of Naturalization or a valid Permanent Resident card.
  • Two proofs of identity. Acceptable proof of name and date of birth may include one primary and one secondary document or two primary documents. Primary documents include a certified copy of a birth certificate, a photo driver’s license or an unexpired passport, while secondary documents include a Social Security card, a certified copy of a marriage certificate or a health insurance card.
  • Proof of Montana residency. Additional documents needed for state ID eligibility include proof of Montana residency, such as a utility bill, a life insurance policy, a rental agreement or a certified copy of a school record.
  • Payment for the DMV ID card fee. When paying the fee, customers may do so via cash, credit card or check.

While some of the documents required for state ID applications do not need to be valid during the time of application, applicants must meet several requirements. For instance, customers who submit an expired driver’s license or identification credential as primary proof of identity must ensure that the credential has been expired for no more than four years.

If submitting an expired DMV ID card or driver’s license as a secondary document, however, the credential may have been expired for up to five years. However, primary United States Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) documents must not have expired more than one year before the date of application.

How to Get an ID in Montana

Knowing how and where to get state ID credentials helps customers save time when purchasing their new identification materials. For instance, all customers must visit a local Driver License Exam Station to apply in person, as online or mail-in processes are not available for these types of credentials.

While customers cannot apply to get ID online in Montana, they must use the MVD’s appointment scheduling system to reserve an in-person appointment. If applicants cannot schedule an appointment online, they may contact their local Driver License Exam Station by phone.

On the day of their appointments, applicants must provide proof of name, address, birthdate and authorized presence. Additionally, customers must pay a fee and submit for a photograph.

REAL ID Cards in Montana

A Montana REAL ID card is an identification credential that complies with federal standards under the REAL ID Act of 2005. While residents do not need a REAL ID-compliant credential under state or federal law, there are several benefits of purchasing this type of card through the MVD. For instance, travelers may wish to obtain this type of credential in lieu of a standard identification credential, as doing so will reduce the need to carry a passport while traveling domestically.

If Montana residents do not obtain a REAL ID-compliant card, they will need to present a passport book or card when flying domestically or entering most federal facilities after October 1, 2020. However, residents may continue to present their non-compliant identification credentials as proof of their identity in situations such as these, until October 1, 2020.

To apply for REAL ID credentials, Montana residents must complete the required steps. These include the below:

  1. Schedule an appointment using the state’s online scheduling tool, or by calling 1-866-450-8034
  2. Submit all documents required for REAL ID applications, including the following: One proof of name, birthdate and authorized presence, one proof of SSN, two proofs of Montana residency and one name change document (if an applicant’s current name does not match the name on his or her identification documents)
  3. Visit an MVD Driver License Station to submit all necessary application materials on the day of the appointment

When applying for state ID cards under the REAL ID Act, if customers cannot submit one acceptable proof of name, birthdate and authorized presence, they may provide the following:

  • One proof of name and date of birth, such as a valid out-out-state identification card or driver’s license, or an unexpired foreign passport with a valid employment authorization document
  • Two proofs of authorized presence, such as an out-of-state REAL ID credential, an unexpired employment authorization document, or an expired foreign passport and an employment authorization document

Note: REAL ID cards are only available at the following office Driver’s License Locations: Billings, Bozeman, Butte, Cut Bank, Deer Lodge, Dillon, Eureka, Glasgow, Glendive, Great Falls, Havre, Helena, Kalispell, Lewistown, Libby, Livingston, Miles City, Missoula, Plentywood, Polson, Red Lodge, Sidney, Stevensville, Superior, Thompson Falls and Wolf Point.

How to Renew or Replace a State ID in Montana

To replace a lost ID card in Montana, state residents must visit their local Driver License Stations to apply for new credentials, and pay the applicable fee. During this time, customers must also present proof of their identity. If cardholders are out-of-state when their credentials go missing, however, they may complete an application for a Mail-in Replacement License (21-2000), they may contact the MVD by calling 406-444-3933 or by emailing DriverLicense@mt.gov.

Instead of obtaining a replacement ID card, customers may choose to renew their identification materials if their credentials are set to expire within the next six months. To renew identification credentials, residents must visit their local Driver License Stations to complete the application process, in person.

Note: Montana residents must obtain a replacement credential after adding a veteran designation to an existing identification credential or after changing names on their cards. However, cardholders do not need to obtain replacement credentials after changing their address information.

DMV ID Costs in Montana

In Montana, the cost of purchasing an identification credential varies, depending on the age of the applicant and the credential type. For instance:

  • The cost of purchasing a credential for residents who are 21 years of age or older is $16.48. This credential remains valid for eight years.
  • The DMV ID cost of purchasing a card for Montana residents who are younger than 21 years of age is $8.24. This credential remains valid for four years.
  • The cost of replacing an identification credential is $16.48 if customers are older than 21 years of age, or $8.24 if they are younger than 21.

If purchasing a REAL ID-compliant credential, however, customers must pay the above costs, in addition to any applicable REAL ID fees. For instance:

  • The Montana ID DMV cost of renewing or replacing a REAL ID credential is $25, in addition to the standard cost of purchasing an identification credential.
  • If purchasing a license or ID in Montana for the first time, the cost of obtaining a REAL ID credential is $50. This same fee applies to those who wish to upgrade their current identification credentials to REAL ID-compliant cards outside of their renewal periods.
  • If upgrading a standard state ID to a REAL ID-compliant credential up to six months before a card’s expiration date, the fee is $25, in addition to the standard cost of purchasing an identification credential. This same fee applies to those who upgrade their credentials no more than three months after a card expires.

Motorists may obtain identification cards at no charge if they voluntarily surrender their driver’s licenses more than six months before the stated date of expiration. This is an excellent option for senior motorists who are no longer comfortable operating motor vehicles.

Last updated on Tuesday, March 5 2019.

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