Charlotte Fraud Defense Attorneys

North Carolina law enforcement officers take fraud charges extremely seriously. The statutes related to fraud charges are complicated. Many different criminal acts fall under the umbrella of criminally fraudulent conduct. If you are facing fraud charges in North Carolina, our legal team can help. At Arnold & Smith, PLLC, we have decades of experience fighting criminal charges on behalf of our clients. Contact our law firm today to schedule your initial consultation as soon as possible.

What Constitutes Fraud in North Carolina?

North Carolina law outlines all of the different types of fraud crimes. The type of fraudulent conduct will determine the specific fraud charge you will face. All fraud charges involve lies, false pretenses, or other misrepresentations that people make in exchange for seeking something of value. In all fraud cases, the prosecutor will need to prove the following elements:

  • The defendant misrepresented an important fact
  • The defendant had knowledge that he or she was purposefully misrepresenting a fact
  • The defendant had the intent to trick or fool the victim by communicating false information
  • The defendant relied on the victim for misrepresentation
  • The victim suffered damages from relying on the defendant's false statement
Are You the Subject of a Fraud Investigation?

Many times, law enforcement officers will investigate fraud charges over a long period of time. If you have not been charged with the crime of fraud, but you suspect that you are under investigation, you have legal rights. Contact our Charlotte defense lawyers soon so we can protect your rights. We will help ensure that Charlotte law enforcement officers do not overstep their boundaries while investigating your case.

Types of North Carolina Fraud Charges

There are many different types of fraud charges in North Carolina. One key characteristic of all fraud charges involves someone unlawfully taking something of value from its rightful owner under false pretenses. You can be charged with fraud in North Carolina for any of the following situations:

  • Using someone else's credit card or debit card without their permission
  • Submitting a false claim to an insurance company
  • Inducing someone to make financial investment decisions based on falsehoods or misrepresentations
  • Engaging in bank fraud or using false statements to obtain money held by a financial institution
  • Engaging in check fraud, including writing "hot checks" or using delays in processing to take money from non-existent funds
  • Wire fraud and mail fraud
  • Using someone else's information to gain access to funds without permission
  • Engaging in identity theft
  • Welfare fraud
  • Fraud involving buying or selling the property to acquire unfair compensation
  • Embezzlement
  • Telemarketing scams
  • Falsifying legal statements for financial compensation
  • Distributing or obtaining fake passports or drivers licenses
The Penalties for Fraud in North Carolina

In North Carolina, fraud is a felony offense. The penalties for fraud depend on the specific facts of the case and the specific type of fraud committed. Judges consider the following factors when it comes to determining the sentence for a defendant charged with fraud:

  • The type of fraud
  • The victim's identity
  • The value of the misappropriated property
  • The extent of the fraud
  • The number of individuals who participated in the fraudulent scheme
  • Whether the defendant was in a position of trust during the commission of the crime

Generally, those convicted of fraud charges can be subject to the following penalties:

  • Incarceration in state prison. A defendant charged with a felony fraud offense could be sentenced to a prison sentence if convicted. The length of the prison sentence in most cases would ultimately depend on the amount of the financial loss to the victim and the defendant's prior criminal history.
  • Probation: The court might decide to sentence you to probation. The length of the probation depends on the specifics of the case. Those on probation will need to report to a probation officer. They will also need to maintain a job, take regular drug tests, and comply with laws.
  • Fines. Defendants charged with fraud will need to pay fines in many instances.
  • Restitution. When someone engages in financial fraud, they may need to compensate the victim for their financial losses. These types of fees are known as restitution fees.

No matter the type of fraud charge, you will face penalties that can negatively alter your life. Contact our fraud defense lawyers as soon as possible to schedule your initial consultation. Call our lawyers at Arnold & Smith, PLLC, at (704) 370-2828 to evaluate your options or fill out our contact form. Now taking cases throughout North Carolina with offices in Uptown Charlotte, Mooresville and Monroe.