You’re late for work...again. You somehow manage to get ready in 15 minutes. You’ve taken your laptop, your bag and even packed yourself a sandwich. Now it might feel like an achievement to get ready within minutes—But speed doesn’t always amount to efficiency as you might have forgotten essential things (such as your IC, keys and money) before you leave to work.
Which leads to this: You’re stopped at a police roadblock just meters away from work. The police asks you to show him your license and IC when you realize...you only have your license with you! You stop to think that it might not be so bad—you could still get away with it because your license will be enough.
Next thing you know, you’ve been slapped with a huge fine for not having your IC with you. So yes, it is an offence in Malaysia if you don’t carry your IC with you at all times.
So let’s take a look at what happens if you commit the offence...
You can be fined and jailed for leaving your IC behind
It can be a bit of a hassle to carry so many things when you’re just heading to a nearby grocery store. But it might be a bigger hassle to fork out money to pay a hefty fine...just because you left your IC back at home.
Section 6(2) of the National Registration Act 1959 says this:
The Act essentially goes on to say that the regulations make it a requirement for Malaysians to show their ICs when asked for. Not being able to produce the IC when required carries a penalty not exceeding RM50,000, a 5 year jail sentence or both.
But what happens if you lost your IC instead of leaving it behind at home?
You can replace your IC and get a new one
There are 2 ways you can lose your IC. One is due to your own carelessness and two, you might have been robbed. Now both these situations are dealt with differently in Malaysia. But both circumstances share the same first step: Make a police report.
Now here’s where the distinctions come in play:
If you lost your IC because you misplaced it somewhere, you don’t necessarily have to go to a police station to make a police report anymore. But take note, this only applies for non-criminal cases (where you were not robbed).
PDRM has introduced the e-reporting portal for the ease of filing police reports for missing documents or things that do not have a criminal element involved. However, this portal is only available in Kuala Lumpur for now.
Once you’re done filing the report, you can now visit any Jabatan Pendaftaran Negara (JPN) branch to apply for a replacement IC.
Take a copy of your police report along when you want to do so. The police report should state the details on how you lost the IC and mention the details of the missing IC.
But here’s something to note: You’ll be fined based on the number of times you lose your IC. Here’s how it works:
If your IC and other belongings were stolen, you’ll need to make a police report at the nearest police station. Your report will then be verified by JPN to confirm that you’ve been robbed—based on the details of your report.
Once your report has been classified based on the circumstance, you’ll be exempted from paying a penalty to get a replacement IC.
However, if you make a false police report saying that you’ve been robbed instead of carelessly losing your IC—you’ll be facing bigger penalties which includes a jail term. Section 182 of the Penal Code states:
Making a false police report essentially carries a fine up to RM2,000, a 6 months jail term or both. Now some of you might wonder if there are other alternatives to carry your IC...without having to bring the original along.
Can you carry a photocopy of your IC instead?
As we mentioned earlier, not bringing your IC everywhere you go is an offence. Now some of us might take this as an opportunity to get creative with the way we carry our IC.
One way you may have considered (or we assume you might) is by carrying a photocopy of your IC, instead of the original. If you thought about this, here’s what NRD’s public relations officer had to say:
“It is therefore not advisable to carry a photocopy of your original IC around because it isn’t valid. Only a genuine IC will be able to identify the person,” – Jainisah Mohd Noor to TheStar (30/8/2007)
So the only way you should carry your IC is by carrying the original one...even if you’re merely visiting the mamak next to your home.