Fraud is a crime of dishonesty. While a conviction on fraud charges can result in significant fines and jail time, the damage it does to your career can be even more serious. Few employers would want to hire someone with a fraud conviction on his or her record.
Fraud has grown increasingly common in Orlando and Central Florida over the last several years. The state has even developed a task force to try and combat these types of crimes, but they didn't stop there. Legislature has also updated the laws, creating more severe penalties for those charged with fraud in Florida.
At The Umansky Law Firm, we are here to make sure a fraud arrest does not haunt you for the rest of your life. Our experience as not only fraud attorneys, but also as former prosecutors allows us to give you an honest evaluation of your case so that you will know your options from the start.
Fraud Charges in Florida
You can be charged with fraud any time you are accused of obtaining money by false pretenses. Examples of fraud include:
Bank Fraud in Orlando
New technology has opened the doors to a whole new world of opportunities, but it has also brought new ways for the dishonest to scam financial institutions. Bank fraud is every person's nightmare because it happens within the bank's system, and it has to have already happened for the customer to discover it. Bank fraud is paid in two ways - either by the victim or by the financial institution. In order to catch these criminals, theft investigators are found inside and out of the institution.
Bank fraud is one of the most expensive white collar crimes in Orlando. Financial institutions in this city are robbed annually to the amount of $835,000,000 and some of the many ways this happens is by using bad checks, deceitfully entering false bank envelopes for instant small loans, using other account numbers, identity theft, and fraudulently obtaining securities, assets, credits or other finances from within the financial institution. The US Code defines bank fraud as anyone who knowingly schemes or defrauds a financial institution, bank or credit agency.
Bad Check Fraud
Bad checks can be either a misdemeanor or a felony, depending on the value of the check that you passed. If you just accidentally don't balance your checkbook and a check bounces, that's not a crime. If they can prove that at the time you wrote the check you knew you didn't have the funds, it is a crime. The primary concern is just to get the funds to whomever you wrote the bad check to. If you can pay it all off and you have no priors, it is possible that an attorney can get you into a diversionary program, which after you settle various conditions and pay the money back with the result of the case getting dismissed, you have the opportunity to take a further step and expunge it from your record.
Credit Card Fraud in Orlando
Credit card fraud is one of the most expensive types of fraud in Orlando, Florida, and it is also one of the most difficult to prosecute. In today's crime scene, credit card fraud is a crime that encompasses a wide-range of theft crimes, and is commonly described as using fraudulent methods to complete a transaction or payment.
Credit card fraud can occur with a dishonest employee copying credit card numbers to obtain funds from their account, or creating fake credit cards using the victim's information. The Federal Trade Commission handles all credit card and identity loss, and in the year 2009 reported a 21 percent increase in identity theft, which has remained constant in the past three years.
Health care Fraud
Healthcare fraud is a white collar crime that is rapidly growing in Orlando. Healthcare fraud generally involves filing dishonest healthcare claims and deceiving health insurance companies for profit. Illegal billing, obtaining subsidized prescriptions, upcoding, falsifying medical records, prescribing additional treatments on an account, selling your information, selling prescription pills on the black market, altering dates and services, billing for non-covered items are all common forms of fraud because it illegally or deceitfully takes a profit.
Every year, millions of illegal prescription pills are sold in Central Florida, and then transported out of the state. Orlando is within the pill mill capital of the United States and because pills can be illegally bought and sold so frequently, healthcare fraud easily follows the same path. The fact that Florida is the number one state for retirement is another reason healthcare fraud is so prevalent.
If you are facing allegations of filing a fraudulent insurance claim, staging a car accident or fire, or reporting property as stolen when it was not, you could be charged or arrested with insurance fraud. This is a serious charge and you are facing possible jail or prison time.
Real Estate Fraud
When the real estate market was good, the rising price of homes and condos in Central Florida led to real estate wealth for some savvy investors. Unfortunately, some of those real estate dreams have turned into nightmares for people who got caught up in mortgage and real estate fraud.
Was the lender in the wrong? The broker? The borrower? The police want to charge someone - and they don't always get it right.
Defending Fraud Charges
There are defenses in fraud cases. One is that whatever you are accused of doing was not fraudulent. In difficult economic times, business deals can go sour and people can lose money. That doesn't mean you committed fraud. The state has the burden of proving that you intended to defraud someone.
Fraud cases are often tough to prove and require many pieces of evidence that the government cannot produce to secure a conviction! An experienced lawyer can guide you through this minefield of difficult choices you may have to make.
Do You Need a Second Chance? Contact a Fraud Lawyer in Orlando
Charged with a form of fraud? You may want to retain an Orlando fraud lawyer in as quickly as possible to review your case for free. To schedule a free initial consultation with one of our lawyers, call us at (407) 228-3838. You may also fill out our online form on the right.
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