As we become more reliant on technology, crimes involving identity theft continue to increase. These crimes are particularly difficult for law enforcement officers because of the technological and jurisdictional issues involved. Facing these challenges, law enforcement agencies have created specialized units focused on investigating these types of offenses.
Delray Beach Identity Theft Lawyer
If you are charged with identity theft, then you need a focused defense. At McLaughlin Morris, P.A., we are experienced in fighting identity theft charges at every level. Jeffrey L. Morris spent six years as a prosecutor in the Broward County State Attorney’s Office’s Economic Crimes Unit, and understands these cases. Call us today at (561) 404-0529 to schedule a free and confidential consultation to discuss your case.
We represent clients charged with a variety of white collar crimes and identity theft offenses such as credit card fraud, loan fraud, and tax related identity theft charges throughout Palm Beach County, Broward County, and Miami-Dade County, FL. We are available 24 hours per day / seven days per week.
Overview of Identity Theft in South Florida
- Types of Identity Theft Offenses Under Florida Law
- Punishment for ID Theft Convictions
- South Florida Attorneys for Identity Theft Charges
Florida law provides for a variety of different identity theft charges, including:
Criminal Use or Possession of Personal Identification Information - Prohibits the fraudulent use or possession of another person's personal identifying information without that person's consent. Charges can range up to first degree felonies, depending on the amount prosecutors can prove the accused obtained through use of the information and how many people's identification information was used. See Florida Statutes Annotated § 817.568(2).
Use or Possession of a Deceased Person's Personal Identification Information - Prohibits the fraudulent use or possession of a deceased person's personal identification information. See Florida Statutes Annotated § 817.568(8).
Obtaining Property by False Personation - Larceny includes falsely presenting yourself as another person, or in any way impersonating another person, to obtain property. The charge is either a felony or misdemeanor, depending on the value of the property taken. See Florida Statutes Annotated § 817.02.
Criminal Use of Personal Identification Information to Harass - Using another person's personal identifying information without consent in an attempt to harass that person is prohibited under the charge of "criminal use of personal identification information to harass," which is a first-degree misdemeanor. See Florida Statutes Annotated § 817.568(4).
Use of a Minor’s Personal Identification Information - Willfully and fraudulently using the personal identification information of a person under the age of 18 without that person’s permission, or the permission of the minor’s parent or legal guardian is a second-degree felony. See Florida Statutes Annotated § 817.568(6).
Counterfeit or Fictitious Personal Identification Information - Using, or possessing with the intent to use, falsified or fictitious personal identification information for purposes of committing a fraud is a felony. See Florida Statutes § 817.568(9).
If convicted, the penalties for identity theft charges will depend on the offense.
For a first degree felony, you could be sentenced to between 30 years to life in prison, and face a fine up to $10,000. Second degree felonies carry sentences ranging up to 15 years in prison, along with a fine up to $10,000. A third degree felony can result in a term up to five years imprisonment, and a fine up to $5,000.
A first degree misdemeanor conviction could result in a jail sentence up to one year and a fine up to $1,000, whereas a second degree misdemeanors can mean a jail sentence up to 60 days and a $500 fine.
Some identity theft charges carry mandatory minimum prison sentences. For instance, Criminal Use or Possession of Personal Identification Information carries a sentence of at least three years, if the scheme involved $5,000 or more or involved the information of 10 to 20 people.
Additionally, you may be required to pay restitution to the victims.
Florida law provides for a myriad of serious identity theft charges. At McLaughlin Morris, P.A., we represent clients who have been charged with identity theft throughout South Florida, including Palm Beach, Broward, and Miami-Dade Counties. Call us today at (561) 404-0529 to discuss the facts of your case. We are available 24 hours per day, 7 days per week.