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Bronx Food Stamp Fraud Lawyers

The Rising Issue of Food Stamp Fraud in New York

The cost of living continues to rise in the Bronx and various other parts of New York. With the burden that many faces trying to feed their family and put a roof over their head, food stamp fraud is on the rise. You can be charged with fraud if you allow someone else to use your food stamps, are a retailer that is falsifying documents to gain from the SNAP Program, or if you are selling your food stamps in exchange for cash.

Legal Ramifications of Food Stamp Fraud

According to the 7 U.S.C. 2024, anyone who is deceptive with food stamps in amounts under $100 can be charged with a misdemeanor. Anyone who is deceptive with amounts over $100 can be charged with a felony. The United States Department of Agriculture, Food and Nutrition Services uses many different resources to catch fraud. If you have received notification of pending charges against you, then you need legal help. You must understand the laws and the severity of the situation, which is the reason why you need a strong legal defense team working hard for you.

How Does Food Stamp Fraud Occur?

There are currently more than 45 million SNAP recipients across the country. Of this amount, only one percent is suspected of fraud annually. There are more deceptions in governmental programs like Medicare and Medicaid than in food stamps. Fraud in this system is very low, but it does happen. Thanks to internal audits, and tips for consumers, there are many checks and balances that are able to detect scams. The average benefits are only a mere $126.39. It is easy to see that there is a much bigger gain from retail establishments than individuals.

Legal Defenses for Recipient Food Stamp Fraud

As legal professionals, we know how these cases typically go. The Government wants their money back. If a person is in jail they cannot retrieve their funds. One of our biggest defenses is to keep you out of jail and working to repay the debt you owe. When the amount is significant, our hands may be tied. Thankfully, the main goal is to recoup the money lost from the program. We use this as a bargaining tool with the prosecutor, among other things. Making restitution is expected.

George FernandezGeorge Fernandez
14:16 30 Apr 24
Excellent 10 out of 10, Helped resolve my case. Jeremy explained everything and made everything easy to understand.
RajRaj
21:33 24 Apr 24
If you are looking for a lawyer that listens, is aggressive where needed, and holds his word above all else, Todd is the best pick. I had hired multiple attorneys prior to hiring the Spodek Group for a white collar case. The first thing that stood out to me was the cost, as anyone going through the process and dealing with the system, money was tight at that time - especially after hiring and firing multiple lawyers. The cost was not as high as others which was definitely a plus. Todd's intake process was also unlike other attorneys. He took the time to actually listen. He cared. He was trying to put himself in my shoes while I was explaining the situation to him and he really took the time to understand the whole situation. Other lawyers will give you 15 mins and send you a retainer agreement. Not Todd, I think he spent almost two hours with me as I was explaining everything.Not only was he great during the onboarding process, he was supportive and very informative through the entire plea process and eventually sentencing. After hiring him, I asked if I should hire a prison consultant, he told me to save my money as he would do everything they would. He was right and held up to his word. Later on I would hear from others that went with the prison consultants that they were a waste of money - I am glad I listened to Todd!When it came time for sentencing, two days prior to sentencing, the prosecutor tried increasing my proposed prison time by almost double - apparently a normal move. Todd and his team worked with me non-stop through the weekend prior to sentencing to ensure that I was not given additional prison time. Again, he took the time to listen and came up with a strategy to explain the case with great detail.Unfortunately, I did plead guilty as that was my best option. Todd and his whole team wrote up nearly 300 pages of a summary of what happened and why I should not be given prison time. If I breakdown the amount I spent with Todd versus the amount of work that I saw being done, I am shocked I was not charged four times as much. The other benefit was, a lot of criminal defense lawyers were just a single attorney with a paralegal or two. Todd had a team of people that I dealt with (5-7 people that I interacted with), but he was ALWAYS accessible. It would never take him more than an hour to reply unless he was in court.I was sentenced to prison and I was emotionally distraught. Todd and his team did whatever they could even after sentencing to make sure I was alright. He personally stayed in touch with my family to ensure I was doing alright and offered support to them. Most lawyers would consider the job complete at sentencing, not Todd.After prison, Todd still spent time with me to make sure I was on the right track and avoiding any potential risks in the future. He has also been giving advice on how to navigate probation etc and has not been looking at the clock for billing.Although I wish I had never been arrested in the first place, I am glad I had Todd and his team in my corner. Without them I likely would have had to spend a lot more time in prison than I did.Thank you, Todd, and the entire Spodek Law team, for helping turn what was a nightmare into a manageable situation!
Yelva Saint-PreuxYelva Saint-Preux
19:26 19 Apr 24
I am immensely grateful to the entire team at Spodek Law Group for their unwavering dedication and exceptional expertise throughout my case. From our initial consultation to the final resolution, their professionalism and tireless advocacy made all the difference. Their strategic approach and attention to detail instilled confidence in me every step of the way.Thanks to their hard work and commitment, we achieved a truly favorable outcome that exceeded my expectations. Not only did they navigate the complexities of my case with precision, but they also provided invaluable support and guidance during what was undoubtedly a challenging time. I cannot recommend Spodek Law Group highly enough, especially attorneys Todd Spodek and Claire Banks; they are beacons of excellence in the legal profession.YSP.
Katherine SunKatherine Sun
18:08 18 Apr 24
my lawyer is Alex Zhik. Efficient, patient and professional
Nun yaNun ya
17:48 18 Apr 24
Todd, Ralph and Alex are amazing. Helped my husband get from a double digit number with multiple charges to a single digit, by the time I blink he will be out. They very professional and help with all your needs. They dealt with my anxiety and worry very well and they understand that your family member needs to get home as soon as possible.
Keisha ParrisKeisha Parris
20:45 15 Mar 24
Believe every single review here about Alex Z!! From our initial consultation, it was evident that Alex possessed a profound understanding of criminal law and a fierce dedication to his clients rights. Throughout the entirety of my case, Alex exhibited unparalleled professionalism and unwavering commitment. What sets Alex apart is not only his legal expertise but also his genuine compassion for his clients. He took the time to thoroughly explain my case, alleviating any concerns I had along the way. His exact words were “I’m not worried about it”. His unwavering support and guidance were invaluable throughout the entire process. I am immensely grateful for Alex's exceptional legal representation and wholeheartedly recommend his services to anyone in need of a skilled criminal defense attorney. Alex Z is not just a lawyer; he is a beacon of hope for those navigating the complexities of the legal system. If you find yourself in need of a dedicated and competent legal advocate, look no further than Alex Z.
Taïko BeautyTaïko Beauty
16:26 15 Mar 24
I don’t know where to start, I can write a novel about this firm, but one thing I will say is that having my best interest was their main priority since the beginning of my case which was back in Winter 2019. Miss Claire Banks, one of the best Attorneys in the firm represented me very well and was very professional, respectful, and truthful. Not once did she leave me in the dark, in fact she presented all options and routes that could possibly be considered for my case and she reinsured me that no matter what I decided to do, her and the team will have my back and that’s exactly what happened. Not only will I be liberated from this case, also, I will enjoy my freedom and continue to be a mother to my first born son and will have no restrictions with accomplishing my goals in life. Now that’s what I call victory!! I thank the Lord, My mother, Claire, and the Spodek team for standing by me and fighting with me. Words can’t describe how grateful I am to have the opportunity to work with this team. I’m very satisfied, very pleased with their performance, their hard work, and their diligence.Thank you team!
K MarK Mar
01:37 25 Jan 24
I recently had Spodek Law Group represent me for a legal matter in NYC and I am thoroughly impressed with their services.Alex Zhik secured the best possible outcome for my case.It was a seamless journey from the initial consultation to the resolution of my legal matter. From the moment I spoke to Todd about my case, his enthusiasm to help was evident, setting a positive tone for the entire experience. The efficiency and professionalism displayed by the team is commendable.A particularly noteworthy aspect of their service is their user-friendly portal to upload your documents/evidence. This not only simplified the process, but showcases their commitment to streamline the client experience.Lastly, in an industry where legal fees can often be a concern, I found their pricing to be very reasonable, making needing legal assistance feel accessible and stress-free.I am grateful for their support and wouldn't hesitate to turn to them again in the future.
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Understanding Recipient Food Stamp Fraud

Food stamp fraud costs the government millions of dollars each year. One of the most common ways that fraud is committed when a person receives stamps and benefits that they are not entitled to. This type of fraud can be divided into two sections. If a SNAP applicant gives erroneous information on their application, in an effort to receive benefits, then they have committed fraud. Second, the SNAP applicant may not include assets, resources, income or members of their household on their application. This can be for the purpose of gaining benefits or it can be by accident.

What Is Food Stamp Trafficking?

When times are tough, people often sell their food stamp benefits in exchange for cash. They can also trade them for other merchandise. This is considered food stamp trafficking, and it is illegal.

Retailer Food Stamp Fraud

Dealing with retailer food stamp fraud is a bit more complex. Take for instance a grocery store that uses the SNAP programs and fails to abide by the rules and restrictions the government sets forth. They can be disqualified from participating in the program. This can cause a significant loss in revenue as many people depend on this program to feed their families. To be reinstated, they would have to lie on a new application. Though they may be reestablished and can take the EBT cards, it will be done through deceitful methods. If and when they are caught, they can be charged with fraud.

Why You Need Legal Help

When charged with this type of crime, it is easy to see that things can be serious. A food stamp fraud attorney will look at the application and see what the discrepancies are that have caused concern. You will need to work hand-in-hand with a lawyer until this criminal matter can be resolved.

In many cases, people are innocent. You may be charged with something that you did not do. You have a right to defend yourself. You need a lawyer that can help make your problems go away. General law firms do not specialize in such cases. You must have a food stamp lawyer that is well-versed in this area of the law. It can mean all the difference in the world. If you or your loved one has been charged with food stamp fraud, call our offices today for a consultation. Spodek Law Group has more than 50 years’ experience, and we can help you.

References

  1. Frequently Asked Questions about SNAP
  2. Understanding SNAP Fraud
  3. US Census Bureau – SNAP Data
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