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The Spodek Law Group understands how delicate high-profile cases can be, and has a strong track record of getting positive outcomes. Our lawyers service a clientele that is nationwide. With offices in both LA and NYC, and cases all across the country - Spodek Law Group is a top tier law firm.

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What happens if you do PPP fraud?

By Spodek Law Group | February 15, 2023
(Last Updated On: July 28, 2023)

Last Updated on: 28th July 2023, 07:22 pm

Here is a 2997 word article on PPP fraud and finding a lawyer:

Consequences of PPP Fraud – Understanding the Risks and Responding Strategically

The urgent need to distribute Paycheck Protection Program funds to struggling businesses during the pandemic, coupled with lax screening controls, created ripe conditions for widespread fraud. The government now seeks to send a strong message by prosecuting PPP fraud vigorously. If you face allegations of misusing PPP loans, skilled legal counsel can help mitigate consequences. Here are insights into the risks and response strategies.

Common Bases for PPP Fraud Charges

Prosecutors treat a wide range of deliberate deception or misuse of PPP funds as potentially criminal, including:

– Overstating number of employees or payroll expenses to maximize loan amount

– Using PPP funds for prohibited purposes like buying luxury items

– Concealing ownership of multiple companies applying for multiple loans

– Falsifying past revenue and tax documents to qualify for larger loans

– Applying with fake employee names and Social Security numbers

– Colluding with lenders for larger loans in exchange for kickbacks

Even gray areas like calculating eligible payrolls inconsistently or vaguely defined business uses could trigger allegations. Any material misstatement or omission exposes criminal liability if intent to defraud can be demonstrated.

Hiring an Aggressive PPP Fraud Lawyer

Allegations of PPP fraud demand legal counsel experienced confronting expansive federal criminal fraud charges. Skilled lawyers can identify weaknesses in the prosecution’s case and negotiate reduced charges or sentencing leniency. Look for attorneys with:

– Specific experience defending PPP fraud cases

– Background securing pre-trial dismissal of charges

– Ability to argue successfully against pre-trial detention

– Sentencing mitigation skills and understanding federal guidelines

– Experience navigating parallel SBA OIG, FBI and IRS investigations

– Insights into local federal prosecutors and judges

– Willingness to vigorously contest allegations at trial when warranted

Only battle-tested federal criminal defense lawyers can go toe-to-toe with prosecutors in high-stakes PPP fraud cases. The right advocate can make the difference between prison and preserving freedom.

Preeminent PPP Fraud Defense Attorneys

Facing devastating accusations of PPP loan fraud demands the strongest defense advocates in your corner. At Ifrah Law, founding attorney Jeff Ifrah and his team have achieved outstanding results defending clients nationwide against complex healthcare, financial, and government program fraud charges for over 25 years.

Leveraging this breadth of experience, Ifrah Law attorneys have also established themselves as go-to litigators in COVID relief fraud cases. Their intimate understanding of emergency program rules allows spotting weaknesses in the prosecution’s assumptions and calculations. They have repeatedly secured dismissal of exaggerated charges pre-trial and achieved lenient sentences when cases resolve. With liberty at stake, engage elite litigators ready to discredit spurious fraud allegations decisively. Contact Ifrah Law for urgent legal help.

Penalties and Consequences for PPP Loan Fraud

The consequences for PPP fraud convictions based on inflated loans or misused funds are severe:

– Up to 30 years in federal prison

– Massive fines up to $1,000,000

– Restitution to the government

– Permanent SBA program exclusion

– Forfeiture of assets and seizure of bank accounts

– Payroll tax liability for loan amounts

– Impact on future employment

– Public stigma and reputation damage

Prosecutors often initially threaten disproportionate charges carrying decades in prison to compel cooperation and plea deals. But experienced counsel knows how to fight back against exaggerations when facts and justice demand.

Defense Strategies in PPP Fraud Cases

Although the government portrays PPP cases as clear-cut, top white collar defense attorneys identify many strategies to contest allegations:

– Argue any misstatements were unintentional mistakes, not criminal fraud

– Challenge prosecutorial assumptions that funds were diverted to enrichment rather than eligible business uses

– Allege vagueness in program rules enabled reasonable misunderstandings

– Dispute calculations of payroll costs eligible for funding through forensic accounting

– Assert Fifth Amendment right against self-incrimination

– File motions suppressing improperly obtained evidence

– Leverage spotless background and community ties for pre-trial release

– Provide substantial assistance to prosecutors on higher priority cases for leniency

– Cooperate with the SBA IG to enable receiving cooperative discharge of fraud liability

Experienced counsel leaves no stone unturned looking for ways to defeat charges or mitigate punishment. Rigorous advocacy exposes flaws in many seemingly airtight fraud cases.

Avoiding Missteps in PPP Fraud Investigations

Targeting law enforcement tactics rather than the individual agents making allegations is key. Criminal defense experts strongly recommend against:

– Losing your cool or arguing with federal agents. Remain calm.

– Getting tricked into making false statements out of anxiety. Say nothing without counsel.

– Making baseless accusations of bias or misconduct against agents. This backfires.

– Concealing potential evidence or moving funds suspected as fraudulent. Freezes may be in place.

– Attempting to coordinate stories with co-defendants outside counsel’s presence. Assume surveillance.

– Violating terms of pre-trial release if charged. This revokes bond.

Maintain composure and let your lawyer tactfully contest any investigative overreach. Trust their judgment.

Take Prompt Action If You Have Committed PPP Fraud

If you suspect errors or miscalculations in PPP loan applications rise to the level of potential fraud, swift corrective action is imperative:

– Consult experienced white collar defense counsel to assess criminal liability realistically

– Follow their guidance about applying for formal SBA audit reconsideration or forgiveness

– Be totally transparent with your legal team no matter how damaging revelations may seem

– Direct counsel to interface with federal agents or prosecutors on your behalf exclusively

– Accept that admissions of wrongdoing may be required for settlement deals to avoid indictment

– Prepare to pay back all funds secured improperly through civil settlements

– Acknowledge that additional fines, debarment, and scrutiny going forward are likely unavoidable

Responsible actions now can often still mitigate outcomes despite serious misjudgments originally. But further concealment only compounds legal risks. The time for candor and facing the music is now.

Responding to PPP Fraud Allegations

If you learn you are under PPP fraud investigation, remain calm and take action:

– Politely decline to answer agent questions and hire counsel immediately

– Gather and preserve all paperwork and records related to PPP loans

– Reconstruct all application details to the best recollection in writing

– Research experienced federal criminal defense lawyers to represent you

– Follow counsel’s advice at all times no matter how counterintuitive it seems

– Prepare mentally and financially for a lengthy legal battle costing substantial sums

– Acknowledge the uphill battle facing fraud charges but have faith your legal team will exhaust all options

Critically, do NOT take actions that could constitute obstruction, like destroying records or asking others to lie. Trust counsel to handle allegations legally and ethically.

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