Am I allowed to make a false high school diploma if my school does not want to give it to me because my paerents owe tuition? I took all the tests and passed: I need my diploma to get a job.

Answer:

There are three possible reasons for faking a diploma to be problematic:

1. Dina demalchusa dina. Forging diplomas is a criminal offence in most countries, and as such, it would also be prohibited according to Jewish Law. Many authorities write that laws which are to the general benefit of the public, and which all agree to abide by, are binding according to Torah law.

2. Getting caught. If you will get caught, you would get into much trouble, and you would cause a potential chilul Hashem.

3. Geneivas Daas. Whoever you present the diploma to assumes it is authentic, and presenting a false diploma is deception. This might not be a problem, because the person you present it to doesn’t really care if the diploma is authentic or not, but cares rather about the truth of the statements therein.

For these reasons, you shouldn’t fake a diploma, but rather try to find a way of obtaining the authentic one. Get in touch with the school, and speak to them about your predicament. Perhaps there are other avenues by which you can obtain the diploma. I understand the predicament, but am confident you’ll find a way out.

Good luck!

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