In this week's installment of Simplified Law, we'll discuss Check Fraud charges in Denver, Adams, and Jefferson County. This crime sounds straightforward, but, like many criminal offenses, there are many aspects which can be misconstrued.
The Lawyer's Definition of Check Fraud
The legal jargon:“Any person, knowing he has insufficient funds with the drawee, who, with intent to defraud, issues a check for the payment of services, wages, salary, commissions, labor, rent, money, property, or other thing of value, commits fraud by check.”
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The Simple Definition of Check Fraud
The simplified version:“Any person who writes a check with the intent to defraud, knowing they don't have the money in the bank, commits check fraud.”
One of My Checks Bounced! Will I Face Check Fraud Charges?
Now, before you get stressed and think – “oh, no! I've had a check bounce before! Will I be charged with Check Fraud?” – it's important to realize there are two necessary elements needed in order to be convicted. These are:
1.Knowing You Don't Have the Money
2.Intent to Defraud
Let's take a minute to look at these two elements. These are the heart and soul of the statute, and explain how you can't simply have a check bounce and face criminal charges.
In order to be convicted of Check Fraud, the District Attorney must prove you knew you didn't have the money in the account. Put simply, you can't be convicted if you wrote a checking believing you had the money in the bank.
Intent to Defraud:
The second element needed for a conviction of Check Fraud is the intent to defraud. For example, a person could write a check (knowing the money isn't in the bank), with the intent to make a deposit before the check clears.
Examples of Check Fraud Charges
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Alyssa is a student at Metro State University in Denver. She's majoring in biology, and she's studying hard because she wants to be a dolphin trainer. This is her last semester, and times have been tough. She works at a retail store, and is barely able to make rent. She gets her book list for the semester, and realizes she doesn't have enough money for her textbooks. So, she finds an old checkbook from her father and writes a check for the books she needs. Because she knowingly intended to defraud by writing the check, she is now facing Check Fraud charges.
Image Credit: Pixabay – SilhouElionas
Tom is angry at his ex-wife, Hilary. Their divorce was messy – Hilary had an affair with a younger man at her insurance firm, and had no regrets. She treated Tom with disdain and tossed their relationship down the drain. Tom wants to get back at her in some way – he's just so upset. One day, he finds one of their old checkbooks; it is an old joint account. This is a perfect way to get back at her! He writes a big check as a donation to a local charity. Unbeknownst to Tom, Hilary closed the account months earlier. Now, Tom is facing Check Fraud charges for his revenge.
Facing Check Fraud Charges? Why You Need a Lawyer
While Check Fraud charges may seem like no big deal, they can really add up and result in a serious conviction. In some cases, Check Fraud can be charged as a class 6 felony, with prison time a possibility. Also, if goods or services were taken Any criminal conviction will have an impact on your future.without payment, you may also be charged with Theft – C.R.S. 18-4-401, which can result in a felony charge as well, depending on the amount. Criminal charges of any kind need to be taken seriously. This is why you should contact a well-known and respected criminal defense lawyer if you've received a summons for Check Fraud. The attorneys at our office have over 30 years of combined courtroom experience. They know what is necessary for a conviction, and they have the expertise you need to get your case dismissed, get an acquittal, or work out a favorable plea deal. Don't stand alone in court – work with an expert who will advocate on your behalf.
Get Help Now
If you or a loved one is facing Check Fraud charges, be smart, exercise your right to remain silent, and contact an experienced criminal defense attorney at the O'Malley Law Office for a free consultation at 303-830-0880. If you or a friend needs a jail visit from an attorney, we can do that. Together, we will protect your future.Request a Free Consultation