Saturday, April 11, 2009

Confiscated ID: ...

I received this email recently.

Hey Mike -
Big fan of the blog. My younger brother recently took my real 21+ ID from me to get into a bar. He was stopped at the door and my license was confiscated by the doorman. Besides being super pissed at my brother, I now have no drivers license. Before I ask the state for a new one, is there any hope in retrieving my license by contacting the bar? What is proper doorman etiquette on this one? What happens to a confiscated real ID? Are there some shady folk out there that take this opportunity to sell the confiscated license?
I appreciate the doorman doing his job but now I'm just trying to get my ID back...
Thanks for your help...
- Rob

Rob.. your best bet is to just go get a new license. I'm sure it's a much smaller fee than to go through the conversation with a doorman. Especially when he has every right to take the id away from your underage brother. If your conversation goes the way most of the ones I've had, you'll get pissed and words will fly. If you feel really strong you might take a swing and then get taken down by the doorman.

What people tend to forget is that a license isn't your personal property. It belongs to the State that issues it and has to be handed over upon request. So the excuse that a person owns a license is not a good argument.

Between all the different places I've worked there's only been a couple different ways to handle ids that are fake or not the owner.
  1. Turn over the id to the state that the business is in. Then it's up to the State to decide if they want to prosecute. Yes, if it's a real id then the person on the id gets prosecuted not the one handing it over. Unless the doorman was able to get their id as well, then both of you get prosecuted.
  2. The ids are destroyed. They get cut up into tiny pieces and thrown away at the end of the night.
  3. The id gets added to a "Wall of Shame". It's usually a display case near the door that has all the confiscated ids.
Personally, I destroy the ids whether they're real or fake. I don't want to go to court any more than some kid needs a Felony on his record before his life even begins. I'm not out to ruin lives. I'm just here to keep the business safe.

Rob, if I were you.. I'd do the same thing to your brother that my brothers did me. Kick his ass until he learns right from wrong. Words don't sink in but a firm smack tends to leave a memory. And make him pay for your new id.

I can't say there aren't any shady doormen out there. I've known a few and I'm no where near being perfect. When doorstaff aren't paid well enough they tend to find other ways to make money.

So it's a gambit. Your id might have been destroyed or it might have been sold or given to another person that looks like you. You can now thank your brother for making you think about all the different bad things that could happen due to it.

If your really paranoid about it then sign up for a credit watch program and hope that your social security number wasn't on the id. If it was, you might be looking at a lot worse things.

Be safe.

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