New Kent Fraud Lawyer
While there are many fraud charges, there are three charges that are the most frequent: forgery and uttering, false pretenses, and issuing bad checks.
If you are facing fraud charges, it is very important to contact an experienced fraud lawyer in New Kent, who will work diligently to ensure you receive the best defense possible, and that the consequences of your charge are minimized.
Elements of the Crime
Examples of fraud include, but are not limited to, false pretenses to gain credit, forging public documents, failure to perform duties after receiving an advance payment, and credit card fraud.
With forgery and uttering, an individual forges a bank note or check to the prejudice of another’s right. This is a Class 5 felony carrying up to 10 years in jail and a $2,500 fine.
False pretenses occurs when an individual obtains, by any false pretense or token, with the intent to defraud, money or property of another. This is a Class 4 felony carrying up to 10 years in jail and up to $100,000 in fines.
Lastly, issuing a bad check occurs when an individual, with the intent to defraud, makes, draws, utters, or delivers any check, knowing at the time the check is written and has insufficient funds to cover the payment. If the value of the check is less than $200, charges are a Class 1 misdemeanor. If the check is $200 or more, it is a Class 6 felony.
Penalties Associated with Fraud
Depending on the charge, penalties range from no time to up to 10 years in jail with many fines, cost, and restitution.
Misdemeanor v. Felony Charges
While most fraud charges are felonies, when the amount in question is less than $200, the fraud charge is a misdemeanor carrying only a maximum penalty of 12 months in jail.
The higher the value of the item, money, or gifts associated with the fraud, the more severe the penalties and punishment of the charge is going to be.
Identity fraud/theft occurs when an individual uses the identifying information of another without permission with the intent to defraud, for his/her own use or for the use of a third person, or to sell or distribute the information to another. Often, this is used to obtain money or hide the information, government records or identifying documents in that person’s name. ID fraud or theft also occurs when an individual uses the name of another to avoid summons or arrest.
A first offense in which the financial loss is less than $200 is a Class 1 misdemeanor carrying up to 12 months in jail and a $2,500 fine. If the financial loss is $200 or more, the charge is a Class 6 felony carrying up to five years in jail and a fine of up to $2,500.
Preparing a Defense
A fraud lawyer in New Kent will prepare a defense by filing the proper motions to get as much information as possible from the places that were defrauded.
A thorough fraud investigation involves compiling records of financial institution and businesses to determine where the fraud occurred and what can be proved.
While every ID fraud case is different and can turn on every factual detail, identity fraud charges are heavily based on the intent of the accused. Common defenses to an ID fraud case include having authority or permission from the person being defrauded, or a mistake by the accused.
Hiring a Criminal Lawyer
Fraud charges involve a lot of parties and lot of paperwork. Hiring a New Kent fraud lawyer who understands what to look for while investigating a case, knows where the defenses lie, and knows the proper strategy in preparing your defense is imperative.
An attorney gives you peace of mind knowing you have a legal counsel available to assist you with your case at every turn, working with you and preparing a defense to protect you and your future interest.
A local lawyer is familiar with the institutions, officers, and attorneys involved. This can aide in not only the investigation of the case, but also in helping the accused have a true and realistic view of the possible outcomes and aide in decision-making going forward.
A New Kent fraud attorney who knows that you are under investigation for a fraud charge will assist you in protecting yourself during the investigation. He or she will assist you in turning yourself in and getting a bond, if necessary. Furthermore, bringing an attorney in before charges are actually sworn gives them the opportunity to get ahead, being proactive rather than reactive.
An attorney knows how to operate and maneuver in the courtroom. An experienced attorney knows where to go, what to say, and when to say it. They will also have knowledge of the law and the case to counter that of the opposing counsel. In the courtroom, your attorney is your shield and your sword and is necessary, to be successful.