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If you provide false documents to DMV, such as a forged birth certificate or other documents, DMV may take action against your driving privilege. 

This guideline contains information on actions DMV may take based on false documents submitted for legal presence, driver’s license (DL) applications and tests, medical reports, and alcohol program completion certificates.

California Vehicle Code (CVC) §12809 (c) and (d), and CVC §13359 provide DMV with the authority to refuse to issue or to revoke the driving privilege for fraudulent activity. To ensure DLs are given only to qualified applicants and to deter fraudulent activity (particularly among minors), DMV will take action in fraud cases against the driving privilege of any person (minor or adult) when there is evidence of fraudulent activity.

CVC §13800 allows DMV to investigate whether the driving rights of any person should be suspended or taken away, or put on probation, when DMV receives information that any grounds exist for which a DL might be refused, or that the licensee has permitted unlawful or fraudulent use of a DL. A suspension under CVC §13801 will be taken when a driver refuses to submit to or fails to complete a DMV reexamination.

CVC §12801.5 requires that all applicants for original driver licenses provide proof of legal presence.

DMV will revoke the driving privilege of any driver involved in fraudulent DL activity, whether or not it is related to traffic safety or if there is evidence to support a DMV action. Traffic safety may be directly impacted when issuance of a fraudulent DL allows a driver to circumvent sanctions against the driving privilege or when a fraudulent DL is secured by an unqualified person.

DMV investigates and may take action against the driving privilege when information concerning fraudulent activity is received from law enforcement and other governmental agencies, health care professionals, private businesses and individuals. DMV reviews photos, thumbprints, application documents, legal presence documents, and DL exam documents for evidence of fraud.


Below is a list of fraudulent DL activities for which action may be taken by DMV:

  • Unlawful Use of a DL-permitted another to use (see CVC §14610 (a)(2) and CVC §14610 (a)(5)).
  • Unlawful Use of a DL-license not issued to subject (see CVC §14610 (a)(3)).
  • Unlawful Use of a DL-license altered or fraudulently obtained (see CVC §14610 (a)(1)).
  • Unlawful Examination-use of crib sheet (see CVC §14610.5 (a) (1)).
  • Unlawful Use of DL-fictitious, fraudulently altered (see CVC §14610 (a)(1)CVC §14610 (a)(7) and CVC §14610 (a)(8)).
  • Fraud Application-false name.
  • Fraud Application-tests taken by and for another (see CVC §14610.5 (a)(2)).
  • Fraud Application-filed by other than subject.
  • Fraud Application-false custody statement.
  • Fraud Application-false application.
  • Fraud Application-under suspension/revocation.
  • Fraud Application-false name and under suspension/revocation.
  • Fraud Application-false name and date of birth.
  • Fraud Document-false document submitted.
  • Fraudulent legal presence documents.
  • Fraudulent alcohol program completion certificates.
  • Fraudulent MCSA-5875, Medical Examination Report (MER).

If there is insufficient evidence to prove whether or not the person knowingly committed a fraudulent act, a reexamination will be scheduled to obtain the necessary information with which to make a decision. During a reexamination it should be determined whether the driver committed intentional fraud.

Birth dates on documents from other countries may have the date before the month. Birth records in Spanish frequently show the date of birth was registered before the date of the actual event.

Hispanic men traditionally write their names with the mother’s last name following the father’s last name, while married women write their names with the father’s last name following the husband’s name. Some Asian countries put the family name first before the given name.

If evidence does not support an action due to a lack of documentation, and testimony obtained during the reexamination does not establish fraudulent activity, a revocation is not appropriate.

Revocation of the driving privilege voids the person’s DL. If there is evidence of fraud sufficient to support an action, DMV will revoke the driving privilege. CVC §12807 (b) prohibits DMV from issuing a DL for one year following revocation or unless the cause for revocation is removed.

The driver has the right to request a hearing within 10 days after receipt of the order of revocation when action is taken against the driving privilege based on evidence of fraud. Failure to respond to a notice of revocation within 10 days of receiving the notice is a waiver of the person’s right to a hearing.

If the driver requests a hearing, the driver has an opportunity to rebut DMV’s evidence or provide new evidence to show that the action should not be sustained. The hearing decision should reflect a concern for traffic safety as well as the integrity of DMV’s database.