question.jpgIn Criminal Law

If an officer asks for my ID, do I have to give it?

That sort of depends; if the officer has reasonable suspicion that you’ve committed a crime, the officer can detain you, ask questions, and ask you for your identification. If you resist, then you could be charged with a crime (refusing a police order) - unless, of course, the officer had no reasonable suspicion to stop you. How would you know whether the officer has reasonable suspicion - well, if you’re doing something wrong, there is probably reasonable suspicion. If you’re not doing something wrong, there probably isn’t reasonable suspicion, but why not give the officer your identification, then? It’s sort of a Catch-22 that police officers are going to win more times than not. Also, in the event that you are pulled over, rest assured that there is reasonable suspicion (i.e., speeding, running a light, etc.), so you’re going to have to provide identification when asked.