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The Real Cost of a Fake ID


This year is a special year for our family, my niece is finishing up high school and will start college in the fall. We couldn't be more proud. As I think of all the things I want to wish her on her graduation, I am reminded that I want to implore her to remember that the drinking age in the state of Florida is still 21. We have all been there. And the temptation to get a fake ID is very high. Every year both high school students and college students obtain a fake ID for the purposes of both getting into clubs or bars, and purchasing alcohol. Beside the possession of alcohol by a minor charge, the fake ID charge is much more costly. Fake IDs can lead to very serious charges in the state of Florida. Possession of a fake ID has been deemed by Florida legislature to be a third degree felony. This means that the crime of possession of a fake ID is punishable by up to five years in prison and up to a $5,000 fine. In reality of course, parents reading this, need to know that your child is not facing prison. But the maximum punishments on the fake ID charge, give the state a very broad range of sentencing options.

Please remind your college-bound seniors, that a fake ID isn't worth it. I get these calls all the time, UNF student was caught in a bar and mouthed off to the police officer. He is now charged with a fake ID and resisting without violence. The fake IDs a third-degree felony and the resisting without violence is a first degree misdemeanor. Once you're charged with a felony, everything is in Circuit Court, and results with an arrest showing in public records for your child.

If you do get that late phone call that your child has been arrested for charge of fake ID, don't panic. Most importantly, you have to figure out a way to avoid any possible trace of this charge in your child’s future. There are options. If your child does not have any criminal history, in most Northeast Florida counties, we can gather enough mitigation, to qualify your child for a pretrial diversion program. This is a great way to avoid an actual felony charge of possession of fake ID being brought against your son or daughter. This would mean the fake ID charge would be diverted from the criminal justice system, and upon completion of a contract with the state attorney’s office, the state will drop the fake ID charge. This outcome would mean that we can then expunge your child's record, and erase any trace of the arrest.

We're here to help you get through this. Please call our office to speak with one of our criminal defense attorneys, who handle fake ID charges all the time. We can answer your questions, walk you through the process, and help save your child's future.