Massachusetts Legal Developments Blog

The Pitfalls of Fake IDs & Serving Minors

A college student thinking about creating a fake ID to purchase alcohol at the local bar or nightclub should think twice if he or she lived in Boston or any other city in Massachusetts. The internet and technological innovations have made it much easier to create an older-looking twin, but the legal consequences of getting caught are complex. Misrepresenting your age or identity can lead to harsh penalties and punishment.

Serving Minors with Fake IDs

Using a fake ID is a criminal offense under Massachusetts law. Punishment for breaking the law may include up to three months in jail, a one-year suspension of your driver's license, and a fee. Is it really worth it? Many underage drinkers think it is. Fake IDs have been a part our nation's teen culture since a national minimum drinking age of 21 was established in the United States in 1984. Many see fake IDs as rites of passage, while others see them as a threat to national security. It is a crime and a simple fake ID can turn into a criminal record for many underage drinkers who try to bypass the law. In many cities, bars or nightclubs can confiscate fake IDs and turn them over to local law enforcement.

In Massachusetts, under M.G.L. c. 138, § 34  a person can be convicted of providing alcohol to a minor, if he or she intended to serve the underage drinker or had knowledge the person was being served alcohol. A person can be convicted if he or she knowingly supplies a person under 21 years of age, except for their own children or grandchildren, with alcohol on his or her property or premises. Although the person may not be the owner of the property, he or she still can be charged with this crime when entrusted with a control of the property. Punishment for providing alcohol to a minor may include fines and imprisonment for up to one year.

Long-term Effects of Using Fake IDs

Maryland School of Public Health conducted a recent study that suggests there may be a link between using fake identifications and the development of alcohol use disorders in college students. Fake IDs give students more opportunities to drink.

Fake ID users are more likely to engage in high-risk drinking and more at risk of developing alcohol-related problems. The study finds there may be a correlation between buying alcohol with Fake IDs and long-term alcohol abuse. The study followed 529 females and 486 males. The participants in the study admitted drinking alcohol at least once by their freshmen year of college.

Legal Counsel for Fake ID Users

Individuals who are caught using fake IDs should seek legal strategies to reduce their penalties. It is important to explore all legal options when you are facing criminal charges. Boston Criminal Defense Attorney, Edward Molari can provide you with the correct solutions and actions you need to take in your case. He explains your rights and provides personalized legal services to every client. You can contact Attorney, Edward Molari at 617-942-1532 for a free consultation.