There are many different charges that can constitute fraud. If you have been accused of fraud, it’s vital that you contact an attorney immediately. Even if you haven’t been charged with anything, it’s important to talk to an attorney if you believe you may be being investigated for potential fraud.
One type of fraud is check fraud. This involves forging signatures on checks and general checks. It also includes any instances in which people alter legitimate checks. A person may commit identity fraud by using a false identity to collect a check payment. People who commit identity theft or check fraud may face fines of up to one million dollars and prison sentences of up to 30 years.
Mail and wire fraud are two other types of fraud. To be convicted of this type of fraud, the prosecution must prove that the individual intentionally schemed to commit fraud. Wire fraud always occurs across state lines, while mail fraud may remain local. With the invention of so many new methods of communication, federal investigators almost always use mail and wire fraud as a catchall.
If you commit an act of fraud through the internet, over the telephone, over email, through a cell phone conversation, or through the regular mail service, you can be charged with mail and wire fraud.
Mortgage fraud may be investigated when a person provides fraudulent information regarding their mortgage application. They may lie about or omit important information so that they can qualify for a better interest rate. It’s common for people who commit mortgage fraud to be charged with mail fraud and bank fraud as well.
If a person overstates how much they make, they have committed income fraud. The same is true if a person borrows money from another individual so that their bank statement looks larger than it usually is. Appraisal fraud occurs when a person tries to understate or overstate how valuable a property is. Fraudulent disclosure occurs when a person doesn’t disclose their debts and liabilities, when a person lies about their employment status, or when a person otherwise gives false information regarding their financial status.
Medicare fraud is another serious allegation. There are several statutes that govern the regulation of healthcare payments. If a person violates a statute, they may be subject to serious penalties.
One type of fraud is in the use of anti-kickback laws. These laws prohibit people to receive payments or favors to refer patients to programs, treatments, or medications that will be paid through Medicaid and Medicare. Anything from bribes to gifts to payment waivers can be considered a kickback.
These laws have been invoked in many complicated cases. They have been used even in cases where the “reward” the healthcare provider got for the referral was not monetary.
If a person is accused of fraud through the False Claims Act, they have presented false claims to be paid by the US government. The conduct must have been intentional rather than being reckless or misguided. If a company files false claims to receive product compensation, they may be involved with an investigation.
Securities fraud is another type of fraud that often occurs. People may be investigated by the SEC because of insider trading, self-reporting, whistle blowers, risk based investigating, and other white collar concerns. Where SEC investigations are concerned, people are expected to be completely compliant in reporting misconduct. There is no room to be untruthful or to hide information.
When a person is accused of securities fraud, they need to contact a lawyer immediately. It’s important to have a defense prepared before the government is ready to pursue its case.
Penalties for Fraud
If you are convicted of fraud, you may be convicted of either a misdemeanor or felony. The potential penalties vary widely depending on the circumstances of the case. However, there are some basic guidelines.
Being convicted of fraud means that you may be sentenced to prison or jail time. Misdemeanors have jail sentences of up to a year, and felonies have prison sentences of at least a year.
A fraud conviction can also lead to probation. People on probation don’t have to go to prison, but they have limited freedoms and must report to a probation officer.
You may also be subject to massive fines.
While many have a general sense of what is meant by the word fraud, not everyone has a full understanding of precisely what kinds of criminal offenses fall under that broader category. Broadly speaking, crimes in this realm tend to involve deceitful conduct of one form or another. With dishonestly at the forefront of fraudulent activity, these offenses include a vast array of schemes for which severe penalties can be imposed upon conviction. If you are facing a fraud-related charge and wish to begin the process of building a defense, a fraud offense lawyer in New Jersey can help.
Fraud Crimes in New Jersey
Fraud offenses are typically non-violent acts, though they can manifest themselves in a number of different ways. Common to all such crimes, however, is an intent to conceal or deceive in order to obtain property, money, or some other form of value in an unlawful manner. While most fraud crimes fall into the financial and consumer areas, other types of fraud also exist, with some of the more commonly-charged offenses including things such as forgery, trademark counterfeiting, credit card fraud, receiving stolen checks, deceptive business practices, fraudulent vehicle title transfer, and more. Other fraud crimes include:
- Rigging contests that are open to the public
- Use of false academic credentials
- Insurance fraud
- Bankruptcy fraud
- Securities fraud
- Deceptive business practices
The seriousness of a fraud charge and the punishments it may yield tend to turn on whether the underlying offense is a federal or state-level crime. In all cases, however, those charged with a crime in this realm are well-served to enlist the aid of a fraud offense attorney in New Jersey as soon as possible after learning of the accusations against them.
High-Stakes Nature of Fraud Cases in New Jersey
The legal universe relating to fraud is quite broad, and it is therefore not surprising that the potential sanctions for those convicted run the gamut from relatively minor to profoundly life-changing. The penalties ultimately imposed on someone found guilty of a fraud charge often depend on the nature of the underlying crime, its designation as a felony or a misdemeanor, and the degree of harm inflicted on victims of the conduct. Individuals convicted of a fraud crime may, in severe cases, be subject to long-term incarceration.
It must also be borne in mind that those charged with a fraud crime in New Jersey are not the only ones for whom a guilty finding is likely to produce truly devastating effects. The resulting job loss, fines, social stigma, and other penatlies are sure to have implications for entire families that can put them on the edge of collapse. Beacause of this, it is crucial to secure strong legal representation from a knowledgeable lawyer as soon as charges are filed.
Detailed Nature of New Jersey Fraud Crimes Defense
The universe of fraud crimes, particularly sophisticated financial offenses, are often highly technical, fact-intensive affairs. As such, every case requires a customzed strategy formulated by an experienced practitioner. A New Jersey fraud defense lawyer will work together with forensic experts, technology analysts, subject matter witnesses, legal support staff, and others to spot gaps in the prosecution’s arguments and evidence, and work toward the best possible outcome.
Contact a New Jersey Fraud Defense Attorney
Considering the host of undesirable implications a fraud crimes conviction is almost certain to bring, the prospect of mounting a vigorous legal defense can be a daunting one, indeed. By obtaining the assistance of a legal practitioner with a track record of success in mitigating penalties and achieving successful results for those facing similar charges, defendants can rest assured that they have placed their future fortunes in good hands.
Time, however, is of the essence when it comes to beginning the process of defending yourself against fraud crimes charges in New Jersey. Indecision is the enemy at times like these, and the sooner the aid of a seasoned attorney is procured, the faster zealous legal representation may begin. In order to assert your rights to a strong defense and work to protect your family’s good name, contact a New Jersey fraud crimes practitioner to discuss the facts of your case.