Facing a fraud charge? It’s imperative to contact a Fort Worth fraud lawyer to start building a strong legal defense right away. Not only can fraud charges carry stiff penalties, but they can damage your professional and personal reputation.
Fraud charges can be complicated and paper-intensive. Our experienced criminal defense attorneys will conduct a comprehensive investigation of the prosecution’s case against you and work to find legal issues that we can use to your advantage. We will work tirelessly to achieve the best possible outcome for your case.
What are Common Examples of Fraud in Fort Worth?
A wide range of offenses could constitute fraud under Texas law. In fact, there is a whole chapter in the Penal Code – Chapter 32 – devoted to fraud. The act of fraud involves someone using trickery or deception to obtain something of value, such as money or property.
Below are some common examples of offenses which are classified as fraud:
- Credit card/Debit Card Fraud or Abuse
- Bank fraud
- Wire fraud
- Check fraud and check kiting
- Counterfeiting real estate deeds
- Insurance Fraud
- Medicaid Fraud
- Medicare Fraud
- Healthcare Fraud
- Identity Fraud
- Tax Fraud
- Criminal Simulation (for example, creating a fake antique)
- Counterfeiting Trademarks
- Stealing or receiving stolen checks
- Fraudulent use or possession of credit card / debit card information
- False statements to obtain credit
- Hindering a Secured Creditor
- Bankruptcy Fraud
- Fraudulent Transfer of a Motor Vehicle
- Commercial Bribery
- Contest Rigging
- Illegal Recruitment of an Athlete
- Securing the Execution of a Document by Deception
- Fraudulent Destruction, Removal, or Concealment of a Writing (Switching tags)
- Falsifying Degrees
- Falsifying a Military Record
- Contractor Fraud
Our team of Fort Worth fraud lawyers are experienced at defending fraud accusations in north Texas.
What is the Penalty for a Fraud Conviction?
The punishment for a fraud conviction depends on whether the crime is a misdemeanor or felony. The nature of the fraud, value of the property, and age of the alleged victim dictate the severity of the charge. The punishment range often follows the Texas theft value ladder:
|Value||Offense Level||Punishment Range|
|Under $100||Class C||Up to $500 fine|
|$100 – $750||Class B||Up to 180 days in jail|
|$750- $2,500||Class A||Up to 1 year in jail|
|$2,500 – $30,000||State Jail||180 days – 2 years in State Jail|
|$30,000-$150,000||Third Degree||2-10 years in prison|
|$150,000-$300,000||Second Degree||2-20 years in prison|
|Upwards of $300,000||First Degree||5-99 years/life|
Fraud Enhancements in Texas
Enhancements also exist based on the characteristics of the victim. For example alleging a victim was elderly (even if the accused did not know it) can increase the offense level by one degree.
Aggregation in Texas Fraud Cases
If the state alleges that money was obtained in a “continuing course of conduct” or as part of a scheme, regardless of the number of victims, the amounts can be aggregated.
Subsequent Offenses for Repeat or Habitual Offenders
Individuals who have previously been convicted of felonies face much harsher punishments than first-time offenders. For example, someone who is charged with a state jail felony and has been convicted twice before of a state jail felony conviction face a third-degree felony punishable of two to 10 years in prison. Someone convicted of a felony (other than a state jail felony) with two previous felony convictions could face a minimum of 25 years in prison and a maximum sentence of lifetime incarceration.
Discuss Your Case Today with a Fort Worth Fraud Attorney
Not only can a fraud conviction leave you with a permanent criminal record, but it could impact your family, finances, and freedom. Leave nothing to chance. Contact an experienced Fort Worth fraud lawyer today.
Our team will give your case the full attention it deserves and work hard to mitigate the criminal accusations against you. To schedule your free consultation, call now.