The Problem With Using a Fake ID at College

Nothing's cooler to a young college student than appearing older than they actually are. One of the biggest advantages of looking older is being able to purchase alcohol or consume alcohol or get into clubs. Students often go out of their way to get fake IDs in an attempt to access alcohol, party, and look cool.

While walking around with a fake ID may seem like the harmless actions of a kid fresh out from under the watchful eyes of their parents and living on their own for the very first time, possessing and using fake IDs is far from harmless fun. Getting caught with a fake ID can put a student's academic and professional future in jeopardy.

The penalties for a college student having and using a fake ID can be quite severe. In some cases, students have been expelled from their universities or have faced other disciplinary action. In addition, these records can follow a student long after they graduate and can make it difficult to obtain employment.

Fake ID Complicates the Charge

College students use fake IDs in a number of different ways. The activity in which the student engages using a fake ID may be a crime, a violation of the school's code of conduct, or both. But whether or not the student's misconduct is criminal or only violates the school code, using a fake ID can make the school code violation worse. It's one thing to do something wrong. It's generally a worse thing to falsify your identity and age in order to do that wrong. The most common ways include the following:

  • Purchasing Alcohol: The most common reason a student gets a fake ID is to purchase alcohol for their personal consumption and consumption by their friends. The minimum legal drinking age in states across the country is age 21, although several states have certain exceptions for things like drinking under the supervision of parents. Buying alcohol for your own consumption while under the age of 21, and buying alcohol for others under the age of 21 to consume, are both crimes. Using fake IDs can get you into even more trouble.
  • Sneaking Into Bars: Students with fake IDs may try to get into clubs and bars off campus. Being unlawfully in the bar or club is one thing, but using a fake ID to get in can be a worse wrong.
  • Buying Tobacco-Related Items: Students under the age of 21 are prohibited from buying tobacco and tobacco-related products, but they often use fake IDs to skirt the laws. In 2020, Congress raised to age 21 the legal age in all states for smoking tobacco. Tobacco-related products include things like e-cigarettes, liquid nicotine, herbal cigarettes, smoking paraphernalia, and rolling papers. Buyers under 21 and the people who sell these items to them can get into trouble.
  • Taking an Exam or Test for Another Student: Students may also try to help another student cheat by presenting false ID pretending to be that other student. That cheating could relate to an exam, a drug test for athletics, or any other controlled school event where identification is critical.

Why Are Fake IDs Bad Things?

Colleges and universities are educating students not only in academics but also in personal and professional comportment. Accountability to the school's standards is critical to that educational mission. False ID destroys accountability. Colleges and universities routinely have rules in place that prohibit students from being in possession of or using a fake ID. In some cases, you can get in trouble for merely possessing the fake ID, even if you never try to use it. Indiana University's Code of Student Rights, Responsibilities, and Conduct is an example in which the university prohibits students not only from possessing or using alcohol when underage, providing alcohol to underage students, and similar age-related wrongs, but also from:

  • any forgery, alteration, or misuse of any university identification;
  • assuming another person's identity or role through deception or without proper authorization; and
  • communicating or acting under the guise, name, or identification another person without proper authorization or authority.

Indiana University's code, like student codes at other schools, prohibits these actions not only on university property and at school events but also at fraternities and sororities associated with the school. Use of a false school ID or a false state ID or driver's license can violate these school codes, leading to misconduct charges.

What Happens If You Get Caught With a Fake ID?

So, you've been caught with a fake ID on your college campus. What happens next? Depending on the school's policy and the severity of the charges, you could be facing some serious consequences. While the legal consequences for your actions will depend on the specifics of what happened, your school may pursue its own disciplinary actions that could go on your permanent record depending on how severe the infraction was. You may receive your school's notice of disciplinary charges. That notice should explain your procedural rights to challenge the charges. Just because your school has alleged that you've violated the student code of conduct using false ID doesn't mean that your school will hold you responsible for the charge. You have the right under student conduct procedures like the ones in place at the University of Missouri to contest the charge. National school discipline defense advisor Joseph D. Lento has helped hundreds of students nationwide avoid discipline. Keep your school record clean. Get the skilled and experienced help you need to defend and defeat the charge.

What Are the Long-Term Consequences of Getting Caught With a Fake ID?

Being caught with a fake ID can have serious consequences for your academic career. Fake ID involves a planned and premeditated wrong, a deception that school officials may not take lightly. College and university disciplinary procedures, like the ones at the University of Arizona, routinely authorize disciplinary officials to impose discipline up to suspension and expulsion from the school. If you are facing disciplinary action, it's important to speak with an experienced attorney who can help you navigate the process and protect your rights. If you get caught with a fake ID on your college campus, you could experience consequences that follow you long after graduation. Depending on the sanctions levied against you, you may find it difficult to get into graduate or professional school, find a job after graduation, or even qualify for a professional license or vocational certification. The fact that you used a fake ID may end up on your permanent record, something that can follow you for years.

Why Should You Work With a Lawyer

It's important to reach out to a lawyer as soon as possible if you've there've been sanctions issued against you by your school due to having a fake ID. Here are some of the reasons why:

  • There may have been a misunderstanding regarding the ID, and you need help proving your innocence.
  • Your circumstances relating to the matter may supply evidence in mitigation of your alleged wrong.
  • Remedial assurances and actions that you and your retained counsel propose may encourage the school to take a lenient approach.
  • You and your retained counsel may show the school that your further education and training may serve all interests better than discipline.

Premier Advisor Available for Defense

Reaching out to national school discipline defense advisor Joseph D. Lento can help you understand your rights and options and give you the best chance of avoiding serious consequences. Don't wait until it's too late; if you've been caught with a fake ID, contact the Lento Law Firm student defense team today. Using a fake ID is never worth it and can get you into serious trouble that could end up making your future extremely difficult. Advisor Joseph D. Lento and the experienced team at the Lento Law Firm have worked with students dealing with fake ID issues and other disciplinary issues for years, and they know what to do to help you get your life back on track. Contact the firm today at 888-535-3686 so that you can get back to being the best student you can be.

Contact Us Today!

If you, or your student, are facing any kind of disciplinary action, or other negative academic sanction, and are having feelings of uncertainty and anxiety for what the future may hold, contact the Lento Law Firm today, and let us help secure your academic career.

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