My 16 year-old from the U.S. wishes to visit me in Canada for the holidays. She planned to obtain an enhanced driver's license, but she failed her test. Can she be refused re-entry into the U.S. without an enhanced driver's license or passport?
A US Citizen can never be refused entry. You just have to provide proof that you are a citizen.
Now, here is what the CBP has to say:
Children: U.S. citizen children ages 15 and under arriving by land or sea from a contiguous territory may present an original or copy of his or her birth certificate (issued by the Vital Records Department in the state where he or she was born), a Consular Report of Birth Abroad, or a Naturalization Certificate. If the child is a newborn and the actual birth certificate has not arrived from the Vital Records Department, we will accept a Hospital issued birth certificate.
A birth certificate is proof of this; however your daughter is above 15 she will need to provide another proof of citizenship; which can include any of the following:
Land or Sea Travel: U.S. citizens entering the United States by land or sea are required to present a valid WHTI-compliant document, which include:
- U.S. Passports
- U.S. Passport Cards
- Enhanced Driver's Licenses
- Trusted Traveler Cards (Global Entry*, NEXUS, SENTRI, or FAST)
- Military Identification Cards (for members of the U.S. armed forces on official orders)
- U.S. Merchant Mariner Document (for U.S. citizens on official maritime business)
*The Global Entry (GE) card is only an ENTRY document and may not be used to enter Canada, Mexico or Adjacent Island.
This means that unfortunately, your daughter will need an approved form of ID as listed above. She can travel, but she'll likely be detained at the border; and then eventually released for entry after a review of her details.
There will be a delay, but she won't be denied entry. She'll just have to wait as they check out her details.