24/7 call for a free consultation 212-300-5196




When you’re facing a federal issue, you need an attorney whose going to be available 24/7 to help you get the results and outcome you need. The value of working with the Spodek Law Group is that we treat each and every client like a member of our family.

How much time can you get for ppp fraud?

How Much Time Can You Get for PPP Fraud?

This helpful was created in 2020 to provide relief for businesses that were struggling due to the COVID-19 pandemic. The PPP program offered forgivable grants/loans to help cover business expenses such as:payroll, rent, utilities and other business expenses. However, some business owners and individuals took advantage of the program and committed fraud to obtain funds they weren‘t supposed to get.

One of the questions we’re being asked is: how much time can you actually get for PPP fraud?

Well, it depends on the circumstances and charges – PPP fraud can potentially lead to decades in prison. Let‘s take a look at some of the factors that determine sentencing for PPP fraud:

Types of Possible PPP Fraud

There are a few ways PPP fraud has occurred:

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.
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.
  • Some business owners have been providing fake information on PPP loan applications, such as overstating number of employees, payroll expenses, or falsifying other documents.
  • They used PPP funds for unauthorized personal purchases instead of approved business expenses like payroll.
  • They lied on the loan forgiveness application about how funds were used in order to have the loan forgiven.
  • They applied for multiple PPP loans from different lenders, known as “loan stacking,” which resulted in them getting more than they deserved.
  • They created fake businesses, or stole identities, to apply for fraudulent PPP loans.
  • They conspired with others to commit PPP fraud.

List of Criminal Charges for PPP Fraud

While the CARES Act itself didn’t contain specific criminal penalties, PPP fraud can lead to many different potential charges under pre-existing federal fraud laws, including:

  • Wire fraud (18 USC §1343) – up to 30 years imprisonment
  • Bank fraud (18 USC §1344) – up to 30 years imprisonment and $1 million fine
  • Making false statements (18 USC §1001) – up to 5 years imprisonment
  • Aggravated identity theft (18 USC §1028A) – mandatory 2 years imprisonment
  • Money laundering (18 USC §1956) – up to 20 years imprisonment per violation
  • Tax evasion (26 USC §7201) – up to 5 years imprisonment
  • Conspiracy to defraud the government (18 USC §371) – up to 5 years imprisonment

Sentencing Factors in PPP Fraud Cases

When it comes to determining the final sentence, judges are looking at a variety of factors, such as:

Federal Sentencing Guidelines – These guidelines look at the amount of monetary loss, and other factors, in order to provide a recommended sentencing range. If fraud was done with larger loan amounts then this means it’s likely that there’s going to be a longer sentencing charge.

Criminal History – Repeat offenders will usually get harsher sentences. Defendants with a criminal record will usually get more more prison time than a first-time offender.

Acceptance of Responsibility – Defendants who plead guilty, and express remorse, can receive lighter sentences.

Restitution – Judges could potentially consider a defendant’s repayment of stolen funds as a mitigating factor.

Type of Fraud – Certain PPP fraud schemes are viewed as more harmful, like creating fake businesses, or stealing identities.

Role in Offense – Defendants who were organizers, or leaders, of criminal schemes get longer sentences than lower-level accomplices.

Avoiding Jail Time for PPP Fraud

For anyone who is facing PPP fraud charges, avoiding prison means having an experienced federal criminal defense lawyer on your side. Strategies that our federal criminal defense lawyer will take, may include:

Plea negotiations – Our criminal defense attorneys might be able to get charges dropped, or reduced, or they might be able to secure a plea deal with lighter sentencing recommendations.

Sentencing memos – Our criminal defense lawyers can submit documents that outline mitigating factors which warrant a lower sentence.

Appealing sentence – After sentencing, our criminal defense attorneys can file appeals arguing your sentence was improperly calculated or excessive.

Cooperating with prosecutors – In some cases, defendants can get a lighter sentence by providing substantial assistance with investigating other PPP fraud cases.

Common PPP Fraud Scenarios

Lying on Loan Applications.

This is one of the most obvious forms of PPP fraud. Applicants who are accused of this type of PPP Fraud typically lied about:

  • Number of employees
  • Payroll costs
  • Revenue
  • Existence of the business itself!

If you made any false statements to obtain a PPP loan, this is fraud. Our federal defense attorneys have experience dealing with all types of loan fraud lies.

Using Funds Improperly

Even if you qualified for the PPP program, misusing PPP money is fraud. It was meant for very specific costs like payroll, mortgage interest, rent and utilities. If you spent it on personal luxuries, like buying a new car, that’s a no-no.

Identity Theft

Some people stole identities in order to apply for multiple PPP loans. They used fake, or stolen, details to secure PPP loans. This is considered wire fraud, and identity theft, in addition to PPP fraud. Our federal defense lawyers have experience with these complex cases.

Inflating Costs

Some people inflated their businesses’ numbers by inflating legit business costs. This is fraud. 

Penalties are Harsh For PPP Loan Fraud

PPP fraud is a federal crime. Charges can include:

  • Bank fraud
  • Wire fraud
  • Money laundering
  • Making false statements

Penalties for PPP loan fraud are severe – such as up to 30 years in prison, plus fines, and in addition having to repay the loan! Many states are also bringing charges. Bottom line, it’s not worth the risk. But if you’re already facing charges, you need an experienced PPP fraud lawyer.

Common Defenses for PPP Fraud

There are valid defenses our attorneys use to defend clients, like:

Lack of Criminal Intent

For fraud charges, prosecutors HAVE TO prove you willfully broke the rules. If you genuinely misunderstood the PPP guidelines, you may have potential defenses available to you. It significantly reduces the liabilities you have. For example, if when you applied the rules were unclear on whether you qualified – this is a potential defense. Or you thought you could use the funds a certain way. No fraudulent intent, no crime.


In rare cases, federal agents could have induced or entrapped you into committing PPP fraud. If so, we may get charges dismissed on entrapment grounds.

Prosecutorial Misconduct

Prosecutors are not allowed to withhold exculpatory evidence or break other rules. Spodek Law Grou’s attorneys will fight any misconduct issues aggressively.

Advice of Counsel

Did an accountant, lawyer or someone else give you advice you to proceed a certain way with your PPP loan? You probably have a defense if you relied on their advice. The key is building the strongest possible defense from day one is having plausible deniability, and defenses. Our PPP fraud lawyers have relationships with prosecutors, and know how to win cases; we know their strategies.

What to Do If You’re Under Investigation

First – don’t panic and make rash decisions. This only makes things worse. Truly. Yes, PPP fraud is extremely serious. But, our lawyers have gotten charges dropped or reduced in many complex cases.

Do NOT Speak to Investigators

As soon as you become aware of an investigation, stop talking to anyone – family, friends, or government officials! Anything you say can, and will, be used against you. You should forward all questions to your PPP fraud lawyer. Our criminal defense attorneys will deal with investigators directly to protect your rights.

Gather All Documentation

In order to get you legal help, we’ll need to see your PPP loan application, supporting documents, bank statements – everything related to the PPP loan you took. All documents you submitted must be evaluated. It’s important that you start putting together a timeline of events too, and share this with our attorneys so we can advise you. The more information we have, the stronger our defense for you will be.

Be Proactive

The worst thing you can do is stick your head in the sand and ignore communication from the government. This gives gives prosecutors more time to build their case. As soon as you suspect trouble, contact a top PPP fraud lawyer

Our Firm’s Approach

At Spodek Law Group, we’ve handled many complex federal cases. We understand the implications of a PPP fraud conviction – it means your future is at risk. This is why we fight tooth and nail for our clients. Our goal is getting charges reduced, or dismissed entirely. 

Potential Civil Liabilities

Even if you are able to avoid criminal charges, PPP fraud can open you up to civil lawsuits and penalties, like:

  • False Claims Act Violations – The False Claims Act allows the government to sue over fraudulent claims. Penalties are severe – triple damages plus fines.
  • Qui Tam Whistleblower Suits – Employees, competitors, or anyone else can file a whistleblower suits pertaining PPP fraud under the False Claims Act. If successful, they get a cut of recoveries.

Get Help From a Top PPP Fraud Lawyer

Facing PPP fraud charges is terrifying. This impacts the rest of your life. The stakes couldn’t be higher. But you don’t have to go it alone. The elite PPP fraud lawyers at Spodek Law Group have successfully defended countless clients in complex federal cases. 

Schedule Your Consultation Now