CHARLESTON, W.Va. (AP) — The West Virginia Division of Motor Vehicles is making it easier for residents to get a REAL ID ahead of the May 3 federal deadline.

The department recently announced a new online service that offers a guided path through pre-enrollment and cuts the time spent at the DMV, according to a news release.

REAL ID Headstart allows applicants to verify their identities, upload required documents, and schedule their REAL ID appointments online.

While the federal REAL ID Act requires documents be presented in person, a change is in progress. Once the act is amended, the DMV aims to enhance REAL ID Headstart so that no in-person visit is needed.

Congress passed the Real ID Act in 2005 to establish minimum security standards for state-issued driver’s licenses and ID cards following a recommendation from the 9/11 Commission. The updated identification cards will be required for airport check-in and to enter federal facilities.

REAL ID Headstart is available at