When a Person Fraudulently Files an Application on Behalf of Another Person.
There is no question that the California Driver License is among the most trusted and therefore, the most sought after government documents. Law enforcement agencies, banking institutes, financial lenders and the airline industry all rely upon the California Driver License to establish true identity. Many special benefits and government aid programs are only provided to citizens to establish lawful residency in the state by presenting the California Driver License.
Finally, the California Driver License demonstrates that the card holder has been properly trained and tested for the operation of a motor vehicle. With so much trust placed in the California Driver License, it is the obligation of the California Department of Motor Vehicles to ensure that only properly identified and qualified persons be issued this important document.
The application, screening, examination, and verification process employed by the DMV issuing a California Driver License is specifically designed to ensure that the card holder has been properly identified and qualified. Any attempt by an applicant to circumvent the application process is considered an act of fraud and can be punished either administratively or criminally.
A common tactic used by those persons seeking to defraud the DMV’s application process occurs when a phony applicant applies for issuance of the driver license on behalf of another person. This often occurs because the intended recipient of the driver license cannot qualify on his own. This normally requires a conspiracy of actors who may include the fraudulent applicant, the person who intends to receive the fraudulent driver license, persons acting as look-outs and, in some instances, corrupt DMV employees.
Any attempt by any person to fraudulent present themselves as an applicant for a driver license with the intention that it be issued to another person has committed an act of fraud and is subject to the following possible penalties:
- The DMV will refuse to grant the driver license to the applicant and close the file. In this instance, the applicant may not re-apply for a driver license for one-year.
- If the suspected person already holds a California Driver License, the DMV will immediately begin the process to suspend or revoke the driver license. If the DMV is successful in suspending or revoking the driver license, the driver may not re-apply for licensing for one year.
- In addition to taking one of the above actions, the DMV may take the extraordinary step of filing a report with the local District Attorney’s office and ask for a criminal filing.
What are my Rights?
If you have received an “Order of Suspension/Revocation” and the notice tells you the DMV suspects you of Fraudulent Activity, the DMV has just put you on notice that they are coming after you. By the time a person receives such an order in the mail, the DMV has already conducted an internal investigation and has concluded there is sufficient evidence to believe you committed an act of fraud.
Whether you are the person who fraudulently filed an application for driver license on behalf of another person; or if you are the person who planned on receiving the fraudulent driver license, you are in jeopardy of being denied a driving privilege or having it taken from you.
In any event, when the DMV notifies you of their belief that you have committed fraud in the application for a driver license, you are entitled to defend yourself. You do have rights, but you must exercise them to protect yourself.
Before the DMV can take any permanent action against you for an allegation of fraud, you must be given an opportunity to defend yourself by scheduling, conducting and winning an Administrative Hearing before the Division of Driver Safety. You have a right to examine all of the evidence against you and to cross-examine any witnesses in the DMV’s case. You have the right to issue subpoenas and to introduce your own evidence and witnesses.
If run properly, a Fraudulent Activity Hearing is a full-blown evidentiary hearing where evidence is introduced, objections are made, witnesses may testify and legal arguments are filed. This type of hearing is run similar to a mini-trial, giving you the opportunity to reverse the DMV’S action. The Fraudulent Activity Hearing is run in strict accordance with the Administrative Procedures Act and the California Government Code. To successfully defend themselves, a driver would have to be an expert in the California Vehicle Code, the California Penal Code, the Evidence Code, the California Code of Procedures and other areas of law. Few California drivers possess the knowledge or experience to excel at a DMV Administrative Hearing.
If the DMV has focused upon you for any type of driver license suspension or revocation; especially in the area of Fraudulent Activity, call the DMV Defense Experts at California Drivers Advocates. We have the knowledge, training and experience to defend you correctly. Whether your hearing is in Northern California or San Diego, we have represented clients in every Driver Safety Office in the State. Call us and we’ll go to work protecting your rights.
More about Fraudulent Activity at the California DMV