If you or someone you know has been charged with fraud, they are facing a very serious criminal charge with serious repercussions. Now is the time to consult with an experienced criminal defense attorney. Being charged with a financial crime is an enormously stressful experience, but you don’t have to go through the court system on your own. Get aggressive legal representation from the knowledgeable and experienced check fraud attorneys at the Law Offices of John J. Zarych. We will protect your rights, guide you through the justice system, and fight to have your charges dropped or reduced. For a free legal consultation, call (609) 616-4956 today.
What Constitutes Fraud in Cape May?
Fraud is a criminal act of deception, in which a person uses a false identity or through false pretenses for the purpose of personal gain. Fraud requires that the state proves the following five elements beyond a reasonable doubt.
- That you misrepresented a material fact
- That you knew or should have known that you were misleading the victim
- That you committed an act or made a statement with the intent of defrauding the victim.
- That the victim reasonably relied on your fraudulent statement;
- The victim suffered actual damages.
Fraud can occur in many different ways and through various forms such as through the mail, through the internet, in person, over the phone, or by using another person’s identity.
At the Law Office of John J. Zarych, our criminal defense attorneys have extensive experience representing those accused of fraud. We know the challenges that you are facing.
Types of Fraud Charges and Penalties in Cape May, NJ
While there are many different fraud crimes in New Jersey, all of them share the same central elements namely that a person made a misrepresentation in their words or in writing in an effort to reap a financial or another type of gain over another. However, all too often innocent people are charged with a fraudulent act for an honest mistake or misunderstanding. However, in order to protect your rights and your future, you will need to demonstrate to the court more than just you made a mistake, you will need an experienced and aggressive attorney to combat aggressive prosecutors.
- Embezzlement – Embezzlement is the act of taking or converting a company or organizations’ legally obtained funds in order for your own purpose or benefit. In order for there to be an act of embezzlement it needs to be shown that there was a fiduciary relationship between the victim and the offender, that the defendant took possession of the property, that the property was taken illegally and without permission, and that the misappropriation of the funds was done so intentionally. Such as a cashier who takes money from the register of their place of employment.
- Insurance fraud – insurance fraud takes many different forms in New Jersey such as claiming injury and disability, falsely claiming unemployment benefits while you are working. These claims are handled by the New Jersey Office of the Insurance Fraud Prosecutor and if you are charged and convicted of a healthcare related insurance fraud then you can face between three and five years in jail for a patient, or between five and ten years if you are a healthcare professional.
- Credit card fraud – Credit card fraud is another common fraud charge that is filed in New Jersey, and with other types of fraud many different acts can constitute credit card fraud including using another’s name in order to obtain a credit card, making a false statement in writing about your finances in order to obtain a credit card or line of credit, or using another’s credit card without their consent. Credit card charges can be brought as either a third-degree or fourth-degree crime in New Jersey, meaning that you can be sentenced to jail as well as pay thousands of dollars in fines.
One of the most common fraud charges are those filed for writing a bad check pursuant to N.J.S.A. § 2C:21-5. The statute defines this offense as “issu[ing] or passes[ing] a check… for the payment of money, or authoriz[ing] an electronic funds transfer, knowing that it will not be honored by the drawee.” As with the case with most fraud charges the punishment depends on the amount of money or the value of the property involved.
As it pertains to writing a bad check if the check was less than $200 then a person can be charged with a disorderly person’s offenses that may carry a fine of up to $1,000 and a 6 months prison sentence.
If the check was for at least $200 by was less than $1,000 then the person may be charged with a fourth-degree crime. A fourth degree crime conviction can mean a fine of up to $10,000 and or a prison sentence of up to 18 months.
Speak to an Experienced Cape May Fraud Defense Lawyer Today
If you or a loved one is facing penalties for fraudulent activity, contact our Cape May fraud attorneys today for a free consultation. Our Cape May criminal defense lawyer can help you protect your future from these charges.