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Secrets of the Texas Criminal Justice System and Your Rights
From writing bad checks to major investment fraud schemes, Texas takes believed fraud offenses very seriously. The more money or property that is allegedly lost to fraud, the more severe the penalties could be. This could include years in prison and thousands of dollars in fines in some cases. If you are accused of any type of fraud, you owe it to yourself to contact an El Paso fraud lawyer for legal assistance.
While some fraud offenses are relatively minor and involve perhaps a few hundred dollars in losses, large-scale embezzlement schemes may result in hundreds of thousands of dollars in losses for businesses, government entities, and investors. A fraud-related conviction could cost you your career, your reputation, and your ability to financially support yourself. A well-versed defense attorney could help you defend yourself against the potential penalties and collateral consequences that may stem from these allegations.
Forging Documents with The Intent to Defraud
Under Texas Penal Code § 32.21, it is illegal to forge writings or any written documents with the intent to defraud or otherwise cause losses to others. Forgery, which could take many forms, always involves changing or altering a document in some way or signing the name of another person who has not authorized the document.
Forgery is a Class A misdemeanor, which may result in a jail sentence of up to one year and a fine of up to $4,000 and may become a felony offense in many circumstances. If the forged writing is a will, real estate deed, or mortgage document, then the offense is a state jail felony, which could result in a prison sentence ranging from 180 days to two years, as well as a $10,000 fine. Since the penalties for any forgery offense might result in significant terms of incarceration, consulting a fraud attorney in El Paso may be helpful. A knowledgeable lawyer could examine the evidence being used against the accused and explain which penalties they may be facing for their allegations.
Writing Bad Checks
Tex. Pen. Code § 32.41 dictates that it is illegal for individuals to write checks with the knowledge that they have insufficient funds in the account on which the checks are drawn. A person writing bad checks typically must pay restitution for this offense.
Writing a bad check is a Class C misdemeanor, which could result in a $500 maximum fine, and does not carry a jail sentence. The offense becomes a Class B misdemeanor if the check is written to pay child support.
Credit-Related Fraud in El Paso
Credit or debit card fraud pursuant to Tex. Pen. Code § 32.31 involves committing any kind of deception for personal financial gain or some other benefit by using a credit or debit card. Credit card fraud may include using an expired or canceled credit card, using a credit card belonging to another, or using a fictitious or falsified credit card. While this offense generally is a state jail felony, it may become a higher-level felony in some circumstances.
Using fraud to attempt to obtain credit, such as a loan, constitutes illegal credit fraud under Tex. Pen. Code § 32.32. Making materially false or misleading statements in the course of trying to get a mortgage or car loan violates this section, which could be a misdemeanor or felony. This typically depends upon the value of the credit involved in the fraud. Anyone who is facing any credit-related fraud allegations should not hesitate to contact an El Paso fraud lawyer for counsel.
Build a Strong Defense with an El Paso Fraud Attorney
Writing bad checks, credit card fraud, and fraudulent attempts to obtain credit are only a few of the potential offenses under Texas law. Other fraud-related offenses include identity theft, deceptive business practices, and fraudulent transfer of a motor vehicle, to name a few. As a conviction on any fraud offense could have serious consequences for you, both personally and professionally, you may wish to seek out the advice of an El Paso fraud lawyer.
A crime of dishonesty that shows up on background checks may make your dreams of purchasing a home, continuing in your career, and furthering your education impossible. It is essential that you get legal advice throughout every step of any criminal proceedings that you may be facing by calling a El Paso fraud lawyer today.