Residents of California can use a driver’s license or I.D. card to officially identify themselves in legal situations. These cards should only be issued by the state. Anyone who creates a false driver’s license or I.D. card can be charged under California Penal Code Section 470a: Forgery of a Driver’s License.
You can get more information about PC 470a right here, with the professionals at the Simmrin Law Group. Review the legal definition of forgery of a driver’s license. You can also focus on the results of a conviction for PC 470a and other similar charges used in California.
Forgery of a Driver’s License: Legal Definition
Individuals can be charged with forgery of a driver’s licensed under PC 470a. According to this legal code, individuals may face charges for:
- Forging, Duplicating, Altering, Falsifying, Counterfeiting, or Reproducing
- Any Identification Card or Driver’s License Issued by a Government Agency
Note that PC 470a charges should only apply if this action is taken with the intent to commit forgery. This means that not all duplications, alterations, or reproductions of an I.D. card or driver’s license should be prosecuted under PC 470a.
Forgery of a Driver’s License: Similar Charges
The state of California uses Penal Code Section 470 to deal with many acts of forgery. PC 470 is the general forgery charge in the state. Other specific fraud charges used in the state can include:
- California Penal Code Section 132 and 134: Offering or Preparing False Evidence
- California Penal Code Section 472: Forging or Possessing a Fraudulent Public Seal
- California Penal Code Section 476: Check Fraud
These charges can be tied to many types of fraud, including bank fraud and mortgage fraud. A white-collar crimes lawyer can help you focus on any of these charges, building your understanding of California’s legal system.
Forgery of a Driver’s License: Examples
Refine your understanding of forgery of a driver’s license charges with the following examples:
Man A wants to make some extra money while he’s at college, learning graphic design. He decides to make fake I.D. cards for other students in his dorm. He sells them for a high price, knowing they will be used to fraudulently purchase alcohol. He could be convicted under PC 470a.
Man B makes a fake driver’s license for his wife’s birthday. It lists her as the Best Wife in California. He does not intend to fool anyone with the driver’s license and neither does she. While he forged a driver’s license, he did not do so with fraudulent intent, and therefore he should not be charged under PC 470a.
Forgery of a Driver’s License: Penalties for a Conviction
Forgery of a driver’s license may be treated as a misdemeanor or a felony in the court system in California. Misdemeanor charges are generally less severe than felony charges, as you can see by reviewing the possible penalties below:
Misdemeanor PC 470a Penalties:
- Fines of Up to $1,000
- Jail Time of Up to One Year
Felony PC 470a Penalties:
- Fines of Up to $10,000
- Prison Time of Up to Three Years
Forgery of a Driver’s License: Legal Defenses
You can focus on defending yourself from PC 470a charges by reaching out to a criminal defense lawyer in Los Angeles. The legal professionals at the Simmrin Law Group know the strategies that work to handle forgery of a driver’s license accusations. Let us build your defense. We could be able to show that:
You Weren’t Trying to Commit Fraud
You should only be convicted of forgery of a driver’s license if you copied, altered, counterfeiting, or reproduced a driver’s license or I.D. card while intended to use it to commit fraud. For example, if you were only intending to make a joke with your actions, you could be able to avoid a PC 470a conviction.
You Were Falsely Accused of Forging a Driver’s License
False accusations can be a serious problem in the court system in California. If you were charged with forgery of a driver’s license when you did not engage in this action, a criminal defense lawyer could start working on your case immediately.
Speak with a Legal Team About Forgery of a Driver’s License Charges
Getting legal help on your side right away can improve your odds of beating California Penal Code Section 470A: Forgery of a Driver’s License charges. Begin constructing your defense now by calling us at (310) 896-2723 or completing our online contact form.
You can speak with our criminal defense lawyers in Los Angeles now to get a FREE initial case evaluation.