In Florida, as is the case in many other states, it is illegal to sell alcohol to anyone who is under the age of 21. Serving alcohol to minors may lead to not only fines and jail time, but anyone who does so may also be liable for injuries or damages that occur should the minor become impaired. What does this mean, however, should you or an employee happen to sell alcohol to a minor with fake identification?
Minors with Fake ID
In most cases, anyone who is licensed to sell alcohol in Florida is only liable if they fail to ask for identification when the person purchasing alcohol is under 21 years old. If you or someone who works for you asks for identification and the person purchasing alcohol presents a realistic looking photo identification stating they are 21 or older, you or your employee cannot be charged for serving underage, nor can you be held liable for any damages that occur should the minor become intoxicated as long as the identification appears realistic. If it appears fake and is clearly not the person who is presenting it, or if it doesn’t meet the criteria of identification set forth by the state, you can be charged for serving to minors.
Penalty for Serving Minors
There is a $500 fine for selling alcohol to minors in Florida, and anyone found guilty can additionally be sentenced to up to 60 days in jail. Charges can be filed against both the person who served the alcohol as well as the person who holds the liquor license. Subsequent offenses can result in higher fines, longer jail terms and a permanent suspension of the liquor license.
Charges Against Minors
In Florida, it is illegal for anyone to use a borrowed, forged, counterfeit or stolen identification card or driver’s license to purchase alcohol. Anyone in possession of a fake ID can be charged with a third-degree felony, ordered to pay a fine of up to $5,000 and may be sentenced to up to five years in prison. Providing fake identification can result in the same penalties. The owner of an establishment that serves alcohol can have someone arrested if they present a false ID in order to purchase alcohol in the state of Florida.
For Liquor Liability Cases, Turn to Laporte, Mulligan & Werner-Watkins, P.A.
If you or a loved one has been charged with serving alcohol to a minor who presented a fake ID to purchase the alcohol, contact Laporte, Mulligan & Werner-Watkins, P.A. today to learn what rights you may have under the law. You can reach us online or by telephone to set up a consultation about your case today.