If you visit any college town, you are sure to run into people who boast fake IDs. Many people use fake IDs to get into clubs and buy drinks when they are under the age of 21. While many people may use fake IDs casually, you may want to reconsider doing so yourself. Using a fake ID can get you in trouble not only with the law, but possibly also with your school. Here's what you need to know.
Are Fake IDs Illegal?
Yes, having a fake ID is illegal—even if you do not intend to use it to drink while you are underage. While each state may have specific laws and punishments, it is generally illegal to knowingly possess or display fake or altered IDs. It is also typically illegal to lend somebody an ID.
Most often, people are discovered because a bartender or bouncer, who looks at IDs every day, notice right away that something is "off." He or she may either take away the ID or call the cops.
How Do People Get Fake IDs?
People sometimes borrow IDs from their friends or family members who may look similar. In other cases, people buy fake IDs from people who make them, often on the web. No matter how you get a fake ID, you may face legal consequences.
What Are the Punishments for Using a Fake ID?
Typically, the use of a fake ID is a misdemeanor, which means you cannot spend more than one year in jail if you are convicted of the crime. You may also face high fees upon conviction. Plus, the charge can follow you around forever.
Your school may also administer its own punishments. If you are convicted of a crime, for example, your school may put you on probation. In some cases, you may even have to leave school, perhaps if you have a history of criminal charges.
What Should You Do If You Are Caught with a Fake ID?
The first thing you should do after you are caught with a fake ID is call a defense attorney who can provide a strong defense for you in court. You do not want to begin life after college with a criminal conviction already on your record. For this reason, you should speak with an attorney immediately. You can set up a consultation, which is often free, to discuss your case and determine the next best steps. For more information, get in touch with a criminal defense attorney in your area.