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In Arizona, Is It a Crime To Not Have Your ID on You?

Are you legally required to have your ID on you at all times in Arizona? Can you get arrested if you don't have it on you? You are legally required to present ID in certain circumstances, like proving you're of age when ordering an alcoholic beverage or presenting a driver's license when pulled over while driving.

But, what about in other situations? Is it a crime to walk around without an ID? Here's what the law in Arizona has to say about having your ID on you at all times:

When Do I Need ID?

Generally speaking, there is no law that requires citizens to carry their identification on them at all times. If someone is minding her own business, there is no obligation to show any identifying documents to the police.

However, as mentioned above, certain transactions require ID, such as operating a motor vehicle.

Otherwise, Arizona does not have any general law that requires a resident to have her passport, driver's license, or any other form of ID on her at all times. However, citizens can be required under state law to identify themselves, similar to laws called "stop and identify" statutes.

Refusing to Give Your Name

Many states have implemented "stop and identify" statutes, which allow the police to request identification from citizens and arrest them if they refuse to identify themselves.

Arizona's version of a "stop and identify" law makes it a crime "to fail or refuse to state the person's true full name on request of a peace officer" so long as that officer has reasonable suspicion to detain that person and has informed them of the law requiring the person's true name.

So, while there is no Arizona law that specifically requires you to carry identification at all times, the statute still has imposed a similar, more lax requirement. Under this law, you can be arrested if you refuse to give up your name to a police officer or provide the officer with a fake name.

This is a crime only when you have been lawfully detained, however, and you still can't be randomly approached by a police officer, without reasonable suspicion, and be required to identify yourself.

If you have had any problems with refusing to identify yourself to a police officer, make sure you contact a local, experienced attorney, who can advise you on the matter.

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