Proving real ID if accused of fake?

I tried googling but only got sites for spotting fake IDs, how to buy/make fake IDs, penalties for being caught, etc. But I want to know the reverse: what happens if I am accused of a fake ID when all I have is a legit card, and what recourse (if any) exists for me to prove myself?

Let’s say I want to buy a pack of Marlboro Menthol Coffin Nails and a jug or box of your finest vintage, and upon demand for ID I present my fully legit state-issued driver’s license - and the clerk suspects it’s a fake and accuses me of such.

Clearly, the store may refuse to do business with me as is their right, and I will likely leave empty handed. But … is that it? I get in serious trouble if I’m carrying a fake ID, but is the store immune to getting any trouble for the opposite scenario?

It may vary by state, but bartender friends (Pennsylvania) tell me that if they do not feel comfortable serving someone, they do not have to serve that person.

Whip out a cellphone and threaten to make a viral video of this terrible injustice.

Just leave. That’s all you can do. Go to another store and buy your stuff there.
Remember that even if you just wanted to buy some Skittles, they can turn you away and, should it go this far, the police will back them up and/or trespass you.

Be it cigarettes or Gatorade, they’re not required to sell you anything.

As others have said, they don’t have to sell you a pack of gum (assuming it isn’t bias against a protected class).

What I would be worried about is an over-zealous clerk destroying the ‘fake’ ID. I don’t know if that is a real thing, but it pops up on social media occasionally. That would probably be actionable against the clerk/store, but you still don’t have an ID until you can replace it.

If I presented the clerk with a my ID and they proceeded to confiscate or destroy it, I’d probably call the police and let them sort it out.

Hmm, I’ve only heard about that with credit cards. In which case I’d pitch a huge fit as well.

That could be very serious if the ID were your passport and you were travelling. I see that in the US this is actually a crime.

Heh. You make a video and sometimes that video goes viral. You cannot “make” a viral video…

Cite: my gf’s rant about clients who ask that her agency “make a viral video”.

You’d likely be out of luck there. The contract with the issuing bank usually says that the bank; not you, own the credit card. I’ve never seen a card destroyed without instructions from the issuing bank, but even were that to occur I doubt that the bank will make much of a fuss on your behalf.

I guess I haven’t either. For some reason I thought I read that in the OP. If they don’t want to sell you something you really don’t have any recourse.

As I said, I’ve only heard of this as an internet thing, and it always involves a drivers license. I can’t imagine any clerk taking it upon themselves to declare a passport a fake, but imagination has failed me before.

Most drivers licenses are fairly solid plastic cards nowadays. I can’t imagine someone taking it upon themselves to destroy one, it’s not like you can rip it in half… But I guess the jobs where you have to check ID could attract some shy-of-a-full-load types.

Right. I read the website (stories about idiotic customers and idiotic retail employees) and there are occasionally stories about some bartender or bouncer or liquor store clerk who takes it up themselves to destroy an ID that they’ve deemed to be fake. Sometimes this is because they don’t recognize the state or province or whatever the ID is from (like the one clerk who thought New Mexico was a foreign country).

I’ve known people get their valid IDs confiscated for being fake here in San Francisco (known personally, not friend of a friend urban legend stuff). Its utter bullshit, and totally illegal (there is nothing that gives a business a right to steal your property in CA). Though many bar staff don’t know that (and think they are bound by ABC regulations to do so). If it happened to me I would file a police report and ABC complaint.

In defense of the bar staff there are so many ABC regulations that are completely insane and make no sense at all. So this particular insane nonsensical one being true would be par for the course.

I filled in at a liquor store a few times awhile back. We were charged with carding everyone. Every. One. God, some people went berserk. The store was on a state hi-way and the last stop for liquor before 2 dry counties. So we got some doozies. Never saw a fake ID. Plenty of underagers trying us out. People got madder at the request for ID for smokes than they did for liquor, I have to say.
We confiscated a bunch of counterfeit money. Amazing how much fake money is around.
ABC told us we could refuse sales to any one for any reason.

This actually happened to me. I had just turned 18 and happened to be traveling through New Orleans with some friends who were also 18. My friends wanted to go to a strip club on Bourbon Street. The bouncer let my friends in without a problem but stopped me. I’ve always looked young for my age, and the bouncer insisted that my ID was fake and wouldn’t let me in.

New Orleans had changed its drinking age from 18 to 21 a few years before, and the club had a two-drink minimum. I didn’t drink at the time, and thinking that underage drinking was the bouncer’s concern, I made my willingness to buy two $5 Diet Cokes explicit. He was unpersuaded.

I wanted to follow my friends, so I kept insisting. Eventually, the bouncer relented, but only after calling over an older woman in a velvet robe and telling her to keep an eye on me.

Bouncers who routinely destroy valid IDs probably get fired. But I doubt they do that very often, even the ones who are drunk with power. Anyone whose truly valid ID has been seized will argue vociferously, to the point of calling the police to get their ID back. People presenting fake IDs don’t want the police there, as they are committing a crime; they’ll skulk away before the police arrive.

It makes no sense to destroy an ID preemptively. Bouncers must simply wait until the police show up and comply with whatever the cops say they should do. Police reports from incidents like this could even help the establishment if they ever get stung for letting underage people drink—places that are generally lax about that wouldn’t be seizing IDs at all, whether fake or “fake.” So having police reports that record seizures of legit IDs could help establish that the bar/club in question is making a good-faith effort to deny service to underage patrons.

I don’t see an incentive for a bar/club/liquor store to destroy any IDs. Obviously fake ones could be seized, partly because those who present them probably won’t fight to get them back. Besides, lots of places display seized fake IDs in prominent view, probably to deter those with un-seized fake IDs.

In many areas, the police can easily scan the ID with the computer in their car, pull up the picture from the state license file, and verify that you are that person, and that it is not fake, but a real ID.

Of course, the store still does not have to sell to you. But you would have valid reason to complain about that clerk to the corporate office. And possibly file a complaint with the State Liquor Licensing Board.

That would have to be a really stupid clerk to do that. (And probably won’t be employed as a clerk for very long afterwards.)

Proper procedure would be to confiscate the ‘fake’ ID – refuse to give it back and place it in the cash register. Then report it to management, and they can deal with the customer and appropriate authorities. Same as is done with counterfeit cash, or an invalid credit card.

And what if it’s a government-run store? In many jurisdictions the state has a monopoly on alcohol sales, so going to a different store simply isn’t possible. And going to a different branch of the same store might not be feasible (for example, if it’s the only liquor store in your town). I’m not sure the government can legally deny a sale in such a case, any more than they could deny to issue you a marriage licence or driving licence just because they can’t authenticate the ID that they themselves issued you.

I had the inverse experience. As I said in a post above, I look young for my age. Between the ages of roughly 16-19, I used to get pulled over all the time by cops who were pretty sure they’d caught a 14-year-old out for a joy ride. One cop in particular went berserk: he yelled at me and berated me, at one point suggesting anyone driving at 70 MPH was traveling faster than a bullet from his pistol. (He was off by an order of magnitude). It was a bizarre rant on many levels.

Well, your local ABC (Alcoholic Beverage Control?) was wrong. Systematically refusing to sell to black people, for example, would obviously be illegal. Their point was surely that you could refuse to sell to anyone who you suspected of being underage even if you couldn’t prove that. Similarly, you could refuse to sell to someone who you found uncivil, who lacked a shirt/shoes, or whatever. But “for any reason” isn’t literally true.