There are several offenses classified as fraud in Indiana, typically referring to crimes involving the intentional deception of a person or entity for financial gain. A conviction for one of these crimes of deceit can not only result in time behind bars and substantial fines, it can also limit your future prospects or even end your career because your criminal record and good name have suffered irreparable harm.
Maybe your were accused of fraud due to a simple misunderstanding or you were under serious financial stress and you acted impulsively out of desperation and made a mistake. Whatever the case, it is important to review your situation with an experienced Indianapolis fraud lawyer who can thoroughly explain all of your options and construct an effective defense to handle the matter with as little negative impact as possible.
Protect your good name and contact Hessler Law at (317) 886-8800 right away to schedule a free and confidential consultation.
Common Fraud Charges & Penalties
In Indiana, fraud covers several very serious offenses and depending on the exact circumstances and nature of the crime, a fraud-related offense could be charged as a felony or misdemeanor. The state defines these crimes as the use of deception, misrepresentation, falsified or forged documents, or tricks to obtain money or property. And there are ways to defend against fraud charges.
Just a few of the common types of Indiana fraud charges include:
- Identity Theft – These are crimes are related to knowingly and intentionally obtaining, possessing, transferring, or using another person’s identity without their consent and with the intent to harm or defraud someone, assume someone else’s identity, or profess to be another person. This is a Level 6 felony punishable by six months to 2.5 years of incarceration and a fine of up to $10,000; however, penalties can vary based on several factors, including how many identities you’re alleged to have stolen or used, the dollar value of any fraud committed, and whose identity you took or used.
- Check Fraud – Check fraud and deception offenses deal with instances of defrauding an individual or entity by knowingly and intentionally using a check, bank draft, or electronic debt that will not be paid or honored, is false or altered in some way, or from an account known to have insufficient funds. The is typically a Class A misdemeanor punishable by up to one year in jail and a fine of up to $5,000. However, if the check was for $750 to $49,999 the offense is a Level 6 felony punishable by six months to 2.5 years of incarceration and a fine of up to $10,000. If the check was for $50,000 or more, the offense is a Level 5 felony punishable by one to six years in prison and a fine of up to $10,000.
- Credit Card Fraud – You may be charged with credit card fraud in Indiana when you are suspected of having the intent to defraud someone and obtain property by using a credit card or a financial transaction device that you knew was unlawfully obtained, forged, expired, or you represented that you were the authorized user without the card holder’s consent. This is considered a Level 6 felony punishable by six months to 2.5 years of incarceration and a fine of up to $10,000.
- Forgery – Under Indiana Code, forgery includes making or using an altered valid document or a falsely produced item with the intent to defraud. This can include documents such as checks, money orders, deeds, wills, contracts, or drug prescriptions, in such a manner that it purports to have been made by another person, at a different time, or with different terms that would result in some gain. This is a Level 6 felony punishable by two to eight years in prison and a fine of up to $10,000.