Illinois driver services facilities to shut down in January due to COVID-19 spike

With coronavirus case counts at an all-time high, facilities will be closed from Jan. 3 through 17.

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People wait in long lines to use the Secretary of State Driver Services facility in Naperville in June. All Illinois facilities will shut down in early January due to a spike in COVID-19 cases.

People wait in long lines to use the Secretary of State Driver Services facility in Naperville in June. All Illinois facilities will shut down in early January due to a spike in COVID-19 cases.

Rich Hein/Sun-Times file

Illinois driver services facilities will shut down for two weeks in early January due to the state’s record-breaking surge in COVID-19 cases.

Illinois Secretary of State Jesse White will put the brakes on in-person transactions from Jan. 3 through 17, White’s office announced Wednesday. Online services will be available.

The shutdown comes as the Omicron variant takes hold in the state, which has averaged an all-time high of 16,686 new coronavirus cases per day over the past week.

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“The health and safety of employees and the public remains paramount, and face-to-face transactions potentially increase the further spread of the virus,” White said in a statement. “Our goal is to safely reopen all offices and driver services facilities on Jan. 18 for face-to-face transactions.”

DMVs were closed statewide for much of the fall and winter of 2020 because of COVID-19, too.

The combination of pandemic shutdowns, community-wide concern over transmission and social distancing protocols have led to massive backlogs and long lines at many facilities, prompting officials to push back many deadlines.

Driver’s license and ID expiration dates have been extended to March 31, 2022, for all except commercial driver’s licenses. The federal REAL ID deadline has been pushed all the way back to May 3, 2023.

Many renewals and other services, including license plate stickers, can be done online at ilsos.gov, by mail or by phone at (800) 252-8980.

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