Unlawful Acts with a False ID
CRS 42–2–309

In Colorado, the possession of an altered or fake ID, or use of another person's identification is a class 3 misdemeanor under CRS 42-2-309. The penalties for unlawful acts with a false ID include a fine and up to 6 months in jail. In this article, our Colorado criminal defense lawyers will address:

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In Colorado, the possession of an altered or fake ID, or use of another person’s identification is a class 3 misdemeanor.

1. What are unlawful with a false ID in Colorado?

Under C.R.S. 42-2-309, the unlawful possession or use of an identification card is a class 3 misdemeanor. The unlawful use of an ID in Colorado includes:

  • Display any surrendered, fictitious, fraudulently altered, or fraudulently obtained identification card;
  • Possession of a fake ID card;
  • Allowing another person to use your identification;
  • To photograph, duplicate, or reproduce any identification card;
  • To photograph, duplicate, or reproduce any identification card for the purpose of distribution, resale, reuse, or manipulation of the data or images.

Individuals may use a fake ID for a number of reasons. This includes underage minors trying to buy cigarettes and individuals under 21 trying to buy alcohol or marijuana. However, bars, restaurants, and liquor stores have employees trained in identifying fake IDs. Servers, clerks, marijuana dispensaries, and bouncers may report the use of fake IDs to law enforcement.

Use of a fake ID may also involve the more serious offense of identity fraud. Using a fake ID to use another person's checks, credit cards, or obtain goods or services in their name is a felony.

Some individuals without work authorization may use another person's identification to get a job. Use of a fake ID for a job may also result in federal immigration charges or violate state and federal tax laws.

2. What are the penalties for use of a fake ID?

The unlawful use of a fake ID is a class 3 misdemeanor offense in Colorado.1 The penalties for use of a fake driver's license include a fine of between $50 and $750 and up to 6 months in jail. However, in most cases, an individual convicted of using a fake ID can be sentenced to probation and avoid serving jail time.

3. What are defenses for the unlawful use of identification?

There may be a number of possible defenses to charges of unlawful use of identification. Your Colorado defense attorney will investigate your case and identify the available legal defenses for your case. Possible defenses include:

  • You did not know the ID was fraudulent;
  • You were not in possession of the fraudulent identification;
  • Evidence was obtained through unlawful search or seizure by the police;
  • Someone used your identification without your knowledge; or
  • You did not intentionally alter the ID.

4. Related Offenses

The unlawful use of a fake ID is related to other criminal offenses. This includes the unlawful use of a Colorado driver's license or commercial driver's license. If a minor used a fake ID to purchase alcohol, they may also be charged for possession of alcohol. If a fake ID was used for financial gain, the defendant may be facing the more serious charges of identity theft.

4.1 C.R.S. 42-2-136 Unlawful Possession or Use of a Driver's License

The unlawful possession or use of a driver's license in Colorado involves obtaining a fake driver's license, using another driver's license, or allowing another person to use one's own driver's license. Unlawful use of a driver's license is a misdemeanor offense in Colorado. Penalties include a fine and potential jail time. Anyone who photographs or duplicates a license to distribute or sell a license can face up to 6 months in jail.

4.2 C.R.S. 42-2-409 Unlawful Possession or Use of a Commercial Driver's License

The unlawful possession or use of a commercial driver's license (CDL) involves obtaining a fake CDL, using another driver's CDL, or allowing another person to use one's own CDL. Unlawful use of a CDL is a misdemeanor offense in Colorado. Penalties include a fine; however, a conviction can also disqualify a driver from their being able to obtain a CDL in the future.

4.3 C.R.S. 18-13-122 Minor in Possession of Alcohol

In Colorado, it is a petty offense for anyone under 21 to possess or consume alcohol or be in possession of alcohol. A first offense can result in a fine of up to $100 and require completion of a substance abuse education program approved by the state. A second or subsequent offense can result in increased penalties.

4.4 C.R.S. 18-5-902 Identity Theft

In Colorado, it is a criminal offense to use another person's personal or financial identifying information to obtain anything of value. This is known as identity theft. This includes using another person's identity to file a claim for workers' comp benefits. Identity theft is a class 4 felony in Colorado. Penalties for identity theft include 2 to 6 years in prison and a fine of up to $500,000.

Call us for help...

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If you were charged for using a fake ID or unlawful use of a Colorado driver's license, please contact us at Colorado Legal Defense Group. Our caring Colorado defense attorneys have many years of experience representing clients who have been charged with motor vehicle violations and criminal offenses. We are among the best Colorado criminal defense attorneys to call. Contact us today for a free consultation by phone or in-person or in our Denver law office.


Legal References

  1. C.R.S. 42-2-310

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