Fraud is a serious and complex crime in Florida. This is because “fraud” is a broad term used to describe activities ranging from intentionally writing a bad check all the way to operating a million dollar Ponzi scheme.

And even though these types of crimes are non-violent, the penalties can be just as harsh as if you were convicted of murder or rape.

If you have been charged with fraud, a Ft Lauderdale fraud lawyer can help you navigate the complexities of the legal system and thoroughly investigate your case to build a strong defense or negotiate to have your penalties reduced. To learn more or get started on your defense, call an experienced defense attorney in Ft Lauderdale today.

Types of Criminal Fraud in Florida

In Florida, fraud is an act of intentional deception for the purpose of financial gain; obtaining property, items, or information; depriving another person of their legal rights; or receiving any other benefits and privileges.

Fraud is usually referred to as a “white-collar crime” because it is common in business and government settings.

Common examples of fraud that a Ft Lauderdale fraud attorney may be able to assist with include:

  • Bankruptcy fraud
  • Identity theft
  • Insurance fraud
  • Forgery
  • Credit card fraud
  • Counterfeiting
  • Bank fraud
  • Embezzlement
  • Internet fraud
  • Tax fraud

See all of the activities that are considered frauds in Chapter 817 of The Florida Statutes

Penalties for Fraudulent Practices in Ft. Lauderdale

The penalties you could be facing for criminal fraud offenses in Florida vary widely depending on a number of factors, including:

  • The type of fraud (credit card, check, insurance, etc.)
  • The value of the money, property, or goods involved
  • The level of your involvement
  • The number of people affected by the fraud
  • Certain minimum sentencing laws

For example, committing identity theft is typically considered a third-degree felony, punishable by up to five years in prison and a $5,000 fine. However, if the identities of 10 to 20 people were stolen or if the value gained from the crime was more than $5,000, the identify theft could be increased to a second-degree felony charge.

This level of identity fraud also carries a mandatory minimum prison sentence of three years. In fact, as the value gained from the crime and the number of people affected increases, so do the mandatory minimum prison sentences (see The 2016 Florida Statutes 817.568).

All fraud-related crimes are different, so it is best to speak with a trusted Ft. Lauderdale fraud attorney to find out the potential penalties you could be facing in your specific case.

Collateral Consequences of a Fraud Charge

Did you know that you could be charged twice for the same fraud? Many people are unaware that some fraud-related crimes can be charged at both the state and federal levels and that double jeopardy does not apply in these instances.

Since federal charges are completely different than charges in the state of Florida, you could potentially be facing even bigger penalties.

Besides prison time and fines, a person charged with fraud could also be facing consequences like:

  • Civil penalties (restitution and heavy fines)
  • The inability to receive government aid
  • Limited employment and educational opportunities
  • Loss of the right to vote
  • Loss of the right to own or use a firearm

Contact a Ft. Lauderdale Fraud Lawyer Today

Fraud cases are often complex and detail-oriented, which can make the legal process time-consuming and overwhelming. Fortunately, you do not have to face criminal fraud charges alone.

A knowledgeable fraud attorney in Ft. Lauderdale can help you make important decisions and untangle the complicated legal process. Contact us today to find out how we can help you overcome your fraud charges.

Fort Lauderdale Criminal Defense Lawyer

Florida Criminal Lawyers

1200 S Pine Island Rd #220 Plantation, FL 33324
(954) 424-7433 954-424-2200
2160 W Atlantic Ave 2nd Floor Delray Beach, FL 33445
(561) 922-8103 561-988-8100