Ohio Fake ID Laws

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When J.R.R. Tolkien created the world of the Shire, he didn’t attach age restrictions to joining in on the pastime of the celebratory drink.  Any young hobbit could join in on the merriment and have a drink with Pippin, Merry, Samwise and Frodo.  Pippin, the youngest at 28 when they set off on their grand adventure, was still considered to be a youngster (or “tween”) as the coming of age for a hobbit is 33.  At any rate, with no age restrictions to be in a pub or to drink ale in the pub or to smoke a pipe, Pippin certainly never worried about having a proper ID. In this article you will learn about Ohio fake ID laws.

                The same is not true in the reality of Northeast Ohio.  Ohio has set a number of age restrictions for numerous products including tobacco and alcohol.  Many teens and especially those between the age of 18 and 21 find this very frustrating.  Nothing worse than being the only 20-year-old in a group of friends that have all turned 21.  Many in this situation have turned to a fake identification card (ID) to solve the issue. 

                Fake IDs are certainly not a new concept, but many Ohio criminal law attorneys are seeing more cases today, perhaps due to ease of access using the internet.  It doesn’t take too much of a search to find a counterfeit ID distributor.  Things are much easier than pre-internet days of having to seek out the creepy person on the corner of a seedy street in the inner city.

                Whatever the reason, anyone contemplating obtaining a fake should rethink that decision.  Using a fake ID carries with it some serious penalties. Simply possessing a fake ID but not attempting to use the ID is still a crime. 

                R.C. 4301.634 prohibits anyone from using false information regarding name, age, or other identification for the purchase of alcohol.  Anyone who violates this section of the statute can face a first-degree misdemeanor which carries with it possible jail time of up to six months and a possible fine of up to $1,000.  The fine is in addition to any court costs and attorney fees.   Any subsequent charges for the same offense may also involve suspension of your driver’s license.  That simple $100 fake ID suddenly became much more expensive.

                The above scenario assumes that an individual simply obtained a random fake ID from any source.  Should an individual be using someone else’s ID, then the situation is even more serious.  Using another person’s ID is considered Identity Fraud.  Pursuant to R.C. 2913.49, identify fraud is a felony and, depending on the value of the product or services obtained using the ID, can be charged as seriously as a second-degree felony.   

                As frustrating as it may be during those in-between ages of being an adult yet not able to “hang” with the other adults, the best thing to do is just wait until that magic age.  It’s not worth having this type of charge on a record when entering the job force and trying to find that perfect employment.  In fact, some colleges or universities may even remove students that are convicted of this type offense.

                If you do find yourself in this situation, be sure to contact Bangerter Law for an experienced criminal law defense attorney located right here in Willoughby, Ohio.