Anne Arundel Fraud Lawyer
Many types of behavior can constitute fraud in the state of Maryland. For instance, intentionally writing bad checks is a fraud offense, as is identity theft and fraudulent actions to obtain a credit card.
If you are accused of committing a fraud offense, an Anne Arundel fraud lawyer may be able to take steps to minimize the ultimate consequences of your actions within the bounds of the law. Call a seasoned criminal attorney today to learn how a legal professional could fight for you.
Fraud Laws in Maryland
Fraud is a broad classification under Maryland law that includes a number of different criminal offenses. Some of the most common types of fraud involve bad checks and identity fraud. However, crimes involving fraud also include the following:
- Credit card fraud
- Exploitation of vulnerable adults
- Fraud against public programs
All of these criminal offenses can be misdemeanors or felonies, typically depending upon the value of the assets, goods, or services involved in the fraudulent transaction. For more information about fraud laws, consult with a knowledgeable lawyer.
Bad Check Laws and Penalties
Under Maryland Criminal Code §8-103, it is illegal to pay for something of value with a check when individuals know that there are insufficient funds in the checking account. Likewise, it is illegal to issue a check when individuals intend to stop payment or intend that payment be refused.
Code §8-106 provides that writing bad checks with the intention of obtaining something with a value in excess of $500 or writing multiple bad checks within a 30-day period that have an aggregate value in excess of $500, is a felony offense that carries a fine of up to $1,000 and a prison sentence of up to 15 years. For checks for something valued at less than $500, the offense is a misdemeanor, which can result in no more than 18 months in jail and a $100 fine. However, in the case of checks for something valued at less than $100, individuals can face no more than 90 days in jail and a $500 fine. The penalties for writing bad checks can be severe, which is why it is critical to obtain the services of a seasoned Anne Arundel fraud attorney.
Identity Fraud Law and Penalties
Code §8-301 makes it a crime to intentionally possess, obtain, or help another possess personal identifying information of others without their consent. Individuals also must possess or obtain the information for the purposes of using the information to get something of value in their name to commit this crime.
Likewise, it is a criminal offense to intentionally assume the identity of another in order to:
- Avoid being prosecuted for a crime
- Get something of value with fraudulent intent
- Fraudulently avoid paying a debt
This code provision also prohibits the use of a re-encoder or skimming device to purposefully to obtain a benefit, service, or other things of value. Finally, it is a crime to purposefully claim to represent other individuals without their consent and with the intention of inducing others to provide personal identifying information or a payment device number.
If individuals use others’ personal identifying information without consent, assume the identity of others, or use a re-encoder or skimming devices to gain something that is worth less than $500, the criminal offense is a misdemeanor punishable by a sentence of imprisonment of up to 18 months, a fine of up to $5,000, or both.
If the thing of value is worth more than $500, however, the crime is a felony that can result in a prison term of up to 15 years or a fine of up to $25,000, or both. Other violations of this code provision may be felonies or misdemeanors, depending on the severity of the offense.
Reach out to an Anne Arundel Fraud Attorney
Even if they only result in a misdemeanor conviction, crimes of dishonesty or deception can cloud your criminal history, lower your job prospects, and adversely affect your ability to obtain credit.
An Anne Arundel fraud lawyer may be able to identify defenses in your case and gather evidence to support those defenses, which can have a direct impact on the outcome of your case. Call today and schedule a consultation with a skilled legal professional.