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Fake IDs in Illinois: Felony or Misdemeanor

On Behalf of | Oct 12, 2015 | Criminal Defense |

It is easier than ever for a teenager to buy a Fake ID. Teenagers spend anywhere from $75 to $250 to obtain Fake IDs so that they can go to bars and restaurants. However, few teenagers appreciate how severe the punishment can be if they are caught with one of them. Especially in Illinois, where a person could suffer a felony conviction, a serious misdemeanor conviction, and/or receive driver’s license suspension. Jesse White published an editorial in the Chicago Tribune discussing the severe penalties: Jesse White’s Opinion

In Illinois, there are three major identification card offenses, including, but not limited to:

  1. Unlawful use of identification card(15 ILCS 335/14);
  2. Fictitious or unlawfully altered identification card(15 ILCS 335/14A); and
  3. Fraudulent identification card(15 ILCS 335/14B).

Unlawful use of identification card (15 ILCS 335/14) is a Class A misdemeanor and shall be punishable by a minimum fine of $500 or 50 hours of community service.   However, if this is a second offense it will be charged as a Class 4 Felony.

Fictitious or unlawfully altered identification card (15 ILCS 335/14A) is either a Class 4 Felony or Class 3 Felony depending on the circumstances of the case and whether or not this is a first offense.

Fraudulent identification card (15 ILCS 335/14B) is either a Class A Misdemeanor, Class 4 Felony or Class 3 Felony depending on the circumstances of the case and whether or not this is a first offense.

These are extremely harsh penalties for, essentially, underage drinking.  This is an example of the Illinois legislature’s futile attempt to crack down on underage drinking.  If you are charged with one of these offenses you may be able to avoid a conviction. You have the Constitutional right to be free from unreasonable searches and seizures. Depending on the circumstances of your case, an aggressive trial lawyer could file and win a motion to suppress evidence (“the fake ID”) and get the case thrown out.

We defend first offenders and repeat offenders in Chicago, Addison, Arlington Heights, Aurora, Burr Ridge, Calumet City, Carol Stream, Downers Grove, Elgin, Elk Grove, Elmhurst, Evanston, Hoffman Estates, Homewood, Joliet, Lombard, Maywood, Oak Brook, Oak Park, Orland Park, Schaumburg, Skokie, Woodridge, and more.