Misappropriation of Public Funds

orlando white collar crime attorney

All Florida merchants are required by state law to collect a sales tax. In Florida that sales tax is  6% on every purchase. Once collected, the merchant is responsible for remitting that sales tax to the Florida Department of Revenue on a monthly basis. Any entity or company that intentionally ignores its duty to transfer those funds to the proper department has committed misappropriation of public funds, punishable as either a misdemeanor or felony offense. If you or someone you know is facing such charges, waste little time in securing aggressive legal representation.

The Orlando misappropriation of public funds lawyers at The Umansky Law Firm are seasoned criminal defense attorneys with extensive experience representing those facing theft charges. As a firm, we understand the importance of having legal counsel that is dedicated to you. Theft charges not only attack the legality of your business operations but also defame your character. Our team of defense lawyers is here to protect your best interests and ensure that your side of the matter is heard.

Florida Penalties for Misappropriation of Public Funds

The penalties one faces for misappropriation of public funds depend on the amount of money misappropriated. Anyone charged with this crime will face one of the following penalties per Florida Statute § 206.56:

Less Than $300

Misappropriating less than $300 is a misdemeanor in the first degree punishable by:

  • Up to 1 year in jail; or
  • Up to 1 year of probation; and
  • Up to $1,000 in fines

More Than $300, Less Than $20,000

Misappropriating more than $300 but less than $20,000 is a felony in the third degree. It is also a Level 1 offense under Florida’s Criminal Punishment Code. The associated penalties are as follows:

  • Up to 5 years in jail; or
  • Up to 5 years of probation; and
  • Up to $5,000 in fines

More Than $20,000, Less Than $100,000

Misappropriating more than $20,000 but less than $100,000 is a felony in the second degree. It is also a Level 4 offense under Florida’s Criminal Punishment Code. The penalties for this crime include:

  • Up to 15 years in prison; or
  • Up to 15 years probation; and
  • Up to $10,000 in fines

More Than $100,000

Misappropriating more than $100,000 is a felony in the first degree. It is also a Level 7 offense under Florida’s Criminal Punishment Code. The associated penalties are as follows:

  • Up to 30 years in prison; or
  • Up to 30 years of probation; and
  • Up to $10,000 in fines

Defending Against Misappropriation of Public Funds Charges

No matter the severity of the criminal charges you face, our team of attorneys at The Umansky Law Firm can help fight for your freedom. It’s vital to note that for the prosecution to get a conviction for misappropriation of public funds, they must prove beyond a reasonable doubt that you intentionally deprived the state of the collected sales tax funds.

We can also assert that the amount of public funds was minimal. This means that if we can prove that you had no intentions of committing the offense and that it occurred incidentally, the charges can potentially be dropped altogether.

The following elements must be present in your case for the State to get a conviction for the charge of misappropriation of public funds:

  • You were an officer of a local government or Florida state entity; or
  • An individual whose duties included the disbursement, safekeeping, receipt or transfer of public funds; and
  • You allocated the money for personal use or use of another without authority; and
  • You know the law prohibited such acts; or
  • You were negligent in learning whether you had the authority to make such an appropriation.

Orlando Misappropriation of Public Funds Lawyers

The Orlando misappropriation of public funds lawyers at The Umansky Law Firm are dedicated to protecting your rights. We have over 100 years of experience and a team of attorneys who’ve served as state and local prosecutors in various capacities. As passionate criminal defense lawyers, we’ll exhaust any available resource to help clear your name of all charges while guiding you through this tough time. Contact us today at 407-228-3838 for a free case evaluation.