Coronavirus Pushes Back Deadline for Bankruptcy Filers to Get REAL ID

If you're planning on filing for bankruptcy soon, be sure to get your REAL ID.

All people entering federal buildings, including federal courthouses, will soon be required to have a state-issued REAL ID driver’s license or identification card. The rule extends to bankruptcy filers who must attend mandatory appearances at the federal courthouse, such as the 341 meeting of creditors required by all individual filers, or a Chapter 13 confirmation hearing.

Personnel will ask for a form of REAL ID as part of the security measures taken at the entrance. Noncompliant debtors won’t be admitted into the courthouse.

Compliance with the REAL ID Act was initially set for October 1, 2020, for both states and individuals; however, bankruptcy filers now have additional time to update identification. On March 23, 2020, President Trump announced that to help ease the burden of states already struggling with the coronavirus outbreak, he would push back the REAL ID deadline with the new date to be released later. Until the new deadline is published, prudent debtors will assume the October 1, 2020 date is still in effect.

The Real ID Act was passed by Congress in 2005 and establishes uniform identification guidelines all states must follow when issuing state driver’s licenses and identification cards. You can find out more on the Department of Homeland Security’s REAL ID Frequently Asked Questions webpage.

Effective: March 23, 2020