PENNSYLVANIA FRAUD LAWYERS
Information on Facing Fraud Charges in Pennsylvania
Facing fraud charges in Pennsylvania, or anywhere, can be terrifying. No matter what type of fraud was allegedly committed, if you are convicted, you are likely to suffer very serious consequences.
Fraud is part of a larger number of crimes that are categorized as white collar crimes. These are generally crimes of deception or deceit for financial or business gain.
While white collar crimes typically do not involve violence or the use of weapons, they are often punished as severely as violent crimes. If convicted, you face up to 20 years in prison, heavy fines and a permanent criminal record.
A fraud conviction is likely to leave you with the reputation of being untrustworthy that will follow you for years to come. It will affect your chances for future employment, housing and your ability to obtain financing or loans.
An arrest is not a conviction.
Just because you were arrested or charged with a crime does not necessarily mean you will be convicted. You need an aggressive criminal attorney who can put together smart defensive strategies designed to protect your rights and win your case.
Through our extensive experience at Ketchel Law, we will fight to have your charges dropped or the fines and penalties significantly reduced.
Attorney Justin J. Ketchel provides free consultations and can explain your rights and next steps for protecting your rights.
DEFINITION OF FRAUD
Fraud is defined in PA Consolidated Statutes Title 18, Chapter 41 titled Forgery and Fraudulent Practices and is considered a type of theft.
However, unlike a routine theft that involves the unlawful taking of another’s property, fraud generally involves some amount of deception, misrepresentation or lies in order to obtain the money or property.
Fraud can include the passing of bad checks to the mislabeling of products.
A list of some of the most common fraud charges include:
- Health Care Fraud
- Tax Fraud
- Tax Evasion
- Mail Fraud
- Wire Fraud
- Credit Card Fraud
- Passing Bad Checks
- Bank Fraud
- Insurance Fraud
- Identity Theft
- Securities Fraud
- Access Device Fraud
- Simulating objects of antiquity
Essentially, all of these crimes contain elements of deceit: lying, misrepresentation, producing false documents, making false or misleading statements, and/or impersonating another in order to make a personal gain.
These crimes of deception are looked upon very harshly and can leave you facing years in prison and thousands of dollars in fines—not to mention the permanent damage to your personal reputation and your family’s reputation.
PUNISHMENT FOR FRAUD IN PENNSYLVANIA
The punishment for fraud crimes is generally directly related to the amount of money or the value of the item defrauded. In other words, the higher the value of the amount stolen, the worse your punishment is likely to be.
Punishments in Pennsylvania for a fraud crime can range from a summary offense to a first-degree felony, depending on the circumstances of your case. The following are the specific punishments corresponding to the charge:
- Summary offense:
- 0-90 days in jail
- Up to $300 in fines
- Third-degree Misdemeanor
- Up to 1 year in jail
- Up to $2,000 in fines
- Second-degree Misdemeanor
- Up to 2 years in jail
- Up to $5,000 in fines
- First-degree Misdemeanor
- Up to 5 years in jail
- Up to $10,000 in fines
- Third-degree Felony
- Up to 7 years in jail
- Up to $15,000 in fines
- Second-degree Felony
- Up to 10 years in jail
- Up to $20,000 in fines
- First-degree Felony
- Up to 20 years in jail
- Up to $25,000 in fines
While punishments for a fraud conviction are typically dependent upon the amount defrauded, here is an example of severe penalties for a forgery conviction:
If you are found guilty of forging a document relating to the issuance of money, securities, stamps, or some other government instrument, you can be charged with a second degree felony. If related to a will, deed, contract or other commercial paper, it can be charged as third degree felony. This will mean serving a prison sentence of anywhere from seven to ten years.
It is very important to understand your rights and how to defend them. There are many possibilities in winning against fraud charges and having an experienced criminal attorney work on your behalf only strengthens the possibility of winning your case.
Even if the evidence is working against you, our attorneys can try to have your charges and sentencing reduced. It is important that you speak with an experienced Pennsylvania Fraud Lawyer immediately if you were charged with forgery or fraud in PA.
AN EXPERIENCED PITTSBURGH FRAUD LAWYER
The Pennsylvania criminal justice system must presume you are innocent of all charges unless a judge or jury finds you guilty.
At Ketchel Law, our greatest strength lies in critically analyzing every aspect of your case, looking for inherent weaknesses and questioning the testimony of any experts or witnesses.
Remember, being charged with a crime, does not mean that you will be convicted. It is extremely important that you are represented properly throughout the duration of your case.
Having a tough criminal attorney on your side to argue in your defense could help in being able to have your sentence reduced or the charges dropped altogether.
Just because you have been arrested for fraud does not mean that you will also be convicted.
We will negotiate with prosecutors and argue your case before the judge during your hearing. We will attempt to discredit evidence not in your favor and work closely with you to find the best course of action in defending your rights and your freedom.
Contact our Pittsburgh Fraud Lawyers today for a free legal consultation.
FREE LEGAL CONSULTATION
At Ketchel Law, we offer free legal consultations to anyone charged with a crime. Call us today to find out how we can help defend your rights.
Learn more about Fraud and White Collar Crimes:
- Pittsburgh White Collar Criminal Lawyers
- Pittsburgh Federal Crime Attorneys
- Tax Fraud
Learn more about Ketchel Law:
- Read Our Client Reviews
- View Our Case History / Results
- Learn About Our Pittsburgh Criminal Lawyers
- Our Legal Blog
Call Ketchel Law at 412-456-1221.