Identity fraud is when someone takes either the identification documents or the credit cards or social security number of someone else and uses them as though they are their own in order to get financial gain.
Identity fraud can be charged as either a misdemeanor or a felony offense in Virginia depending on the amount of money that was involved. Any time there is a fraud that involves an attempt to get $200 or more or which successfully results in getting $200 or more, it can be charged as a felony in Virginia. This has far-reaching consequences including possible prison time as well as the loss of a person’s civil rights.
A Manassas identity theft lawyer can provide support by walking you through the process, letting you know what to expect and preparing you for important points in the case such as discovery, preliminary hearings, trials, or even sentencing.
Identity fraud charges frequently turn on whether an individual knew or had reason so know that either a card or some other document that they were using was forged or did not belong to them. In a very typical case, individuals may purchase a gift card online or from a friend and when they attempt to use that card, they then find out that it has actually no money and is encoded with the credit card information of some other person that it has been stolen from.
Showing whether a person knew or had reason to know that they were using something that did not belong to them may be important. In other cases, there will be a question as to whether a person had permission to use a card that belongs to someone that they know.
It’s going to be essential for a Manassas identity theft lawyer to know as much as he or she possibly can about the factual situation as well as the law that relates to the case. The attorney is going to want to know everything that the defendant knows about the case, all of the statements that they have made, all of the evidence that they are aware of. They will need to know about any witnesses, which may be helpful as well as any other evidence which may be helpful in the case. In addition, knowing what jurisdiction that the individual is in, who the prosecutors are, as well as who the judges are will make a significant impact in any kind of case and in particular, in a fraud case.
The benefit of engaging with an attorney when you realize you’re under investigation for a crime is that they lawyer can help you in a number of ways. One of them will be gathering information from detectives, investigators, and other law enforcement. Another will be by helping you take affirmative steps and making sure that number one, you don’t do anything else to hurt yourself or to create new evidence, and number two, you begin to prepare your defense from the beginning so that you have the best possibility of having your charge be reduced or ultimately dismissed.
It’s critical to have a lawyer by your side at every phase of a trial process and particularly any time you have to appear before a court. If you have a hearing court, that means that there is something important that’s happening in your process, whether you’re being advised of the charges or you are being called upon to plea. Whether it’s discovery or a preliminary hearing, a trial or even a sentencing, these are scenarios where an identity theft lawyer can use their experience and skills to bring about better results for you than you could possibly hope to get without the benefit of counsel.
The benefit of having a local Manassas identity theft lawyer in a fraud case is that you’re going to have the benefit of someone who not only knows the law and not only knows the kind of charge you’re facing, but a lawyer who is also familiar with the judge, the prosecutor, and the local practice on these kinds of cases. Each of those things is something that can provide a tactical advantage in a very serious kind of case.
Do not send us confidential information related to you or your company until you speak with one of our attorneys and get authorization to send that information to us.