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Penalties for Fake ID Use in North Carolina

In the grand scheme of things, fake IDs seem completely harmless. Kids will be kids, right? Wrong: If you’re busted for using a fake ID, or for lending your ID to someone else to use, you put yourself in serious trouble. 

Generally, fake ID charges arise in the context of illegal entry into a bar or another establishment that serves alcohol. The charges stemming from underage drinking and fake ID use are laid out in N.C.G.S. 18B-302(e).

The law bans the use of fake IDs to enter (or attempt to enter) a place where alcohol is sold or consumed, to obtain (or attempt to obtain) alcoholic beverages, and to obtain (or attempt to obtain) permission to purchase alcoholic beverages. Violation is deemed a Class 1 Misdemeanor. If convicted, you can lose your driver’s license and potentially face up to 120 days in jail.

However, not all fake ID charges involve alcohol: N.C.G.S. 20-30(3) makes it a Class 2 Misdemeanor to “display” or “represent as one’s own” a driver’s license that is not yours. This frequently happens in the traffic context, for instance, if you try to get out of a traffic-related crime by showing a law enforcement officer a false ID. This, too, can lead to license suspension for up to a year.

If you let someone else use your ID, you can face similarly severe penalties: Under N.C.G.S. 18B-302(f), lending minors your ID to purchase alcohol can result in a Class 1 Misdemeanor charge and license revocation.

If you’ve been charged with a crime relating to false ID use, Cotten Law can help. Jeremy has represented tens of thousands of clients charged with offenses such as yours and has hundreds of stellar reviews online. Our offices serve clients in central North Carolina including Wake, Johnston, Harnett, Orange, Sampson, Lee, and Chatham Counties. Give our office a call or click over to our main page to chat live with an assistant 24 hours a day.

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