Imagine a step-by-step guide on rectifying an issue with peeling lamination on a generic government-issued identification card. The first step shows a hand delicately fingering the peeling corner of said plastic coated card which contains typical features such as a hologram, or engraved text. Further steps should include a person applying a clear adhesive to reinforce it without affecting the information on the card. The final step shows the repaired card with a smoother, better-protected surface. Typed instructions to each step accompany the images to make the process clearer.

Fixing Your Peeling Real ID: Practical Advice

The introduction of the Real ID has brought about a suite of security enhancements designed to fortify identification processes across the United States. However, a common issue that many individuals face with their Real IDs is peeling, which not only affects the physical appearance of the ID but can also lead to questions about its validity during verification processes. This article provides practical advice on how to address and fix your peeling Real ID, ensuring it remains a valid and reliable form of identification.

Understanding the Issue

Real IDs are manufactured with advanced materials designed to improve their durability and security. Despite this, the lamination or overlay that protects the information and photo can begin to peel over time due to various factors such as exposure to extreme temperatures, improper handling, or simply the natural aging process. It’s important to address peeling issues promptly to prevent further damage and ensure your ID is accepted when necessary.

Immediate Steps to Take

If you notice that your Real ID is starting to peel, the first step is to avoid the temptation to peel it further. Attempting to fix the issue yourself by reattaching the peeling parts can cause more harm than good, potentially rendering the ID invalid. Here are some immediate steps you can take:

  • Contact the issuing authority: The department of motor vehicles (DMV) or the equivalent authority in your state that issued your Real ID should be your first point of contact. They can provide guidance on the best course of action, which, depending on the extent of the damage, may involve applying for a replacement.
  • Apply for a replacement if necessary: If the peeling is significant, applying for a replacement ID might be the recommended solution. This process will likely involve submitting a request form, providing proof of identity, and possibly paying a fee. Check with your local DMV for the specific requirements and process.
  • Protect your ID: While waiting for a replacement or solution from the issuing authority, take steps to protect your ID from further damage. Keep it in a protective sleeve or a part of your wallet that limits exposure to elements that can exacerbate the peeling.

Preventing Future Peeling

After addressing the immediate issue, consider steps to prevent future peeling of your Real ID or any other important identification cards. Here are some tips:

  • Avoid exposing your ID to extreme temperatures, such as leaving it in a car on a hot day or near a heat source.
  • Keep your ID in a protective sleeve or a section of your wallet that minimizes friction and bending.
  • Avoid handling the ID more than necessary, especially in ways that could compromise the lamination.


While peeling is a common issue with Real IDs, it can be effectively managed with the right approach. By contacting the issuing authority, applying for a replacement if needed, and taking preventive measures, you can ensure that your Real ID remains a valid and functional form of identification. Remember, a little bit of care and prompt action can go a long way in maintaining the integrity and reliability of your important identification documents.