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Troy Identity Theft Lawyer

Identity theft is frequently seen as a major concern of individuals, companies, and organizations. As technology advances and digital payments become increasingly common, personal information is often readily available on the web. However, politicians, the public, and law enforcement have made finding and prosecuting offenders a priority.

If you find yourself facing an identity theft charge, you may want to seriously consider speaking with a Troy identity theft lawyer about your case. Legal penalties for a conviction may significantly impact your welfare, so it may be wise to contact a dedicated criminal attorney who is familiar with such cases for helping to defend yourself and your best interests.

The Legal Definition of Identity Theft in Troy

Identity theft is a form of fraud committed by illegally acquiring someone else’s personal information and vital records by wrongful means, with the intent of using that information to gain access to accounts for personal financial enrichment. Vulnerable information includes:

  • Social security numbers
  • Driver’s license numbers
  • Addresses
  • Birth dates

Identity theft can be a state misdemeanor or felony offense. However, if state lines are crossed, this may lead to heavier charges because the act could be considered a federal offense.

Potentially Applicable Defenses for Identity Theft Charges

Depending on the facts involved and the evidence collected, a Troy identity theft lawyer could assert a substantial defense for their client. For instance, they could potentially prove that they acted with the consent of the person whose identity was allegedly stolen and that their actions were therefore lawful.

Intent can also be a used as a defense. If the someone did not intend to steal a person’s identity, the state’s case could be weakened. Furthermore, duress could also be used as a credible defense under certain circumstances.

For example, if someone who is accused of committing an identity theft offense was threatened with harm, exposure, or financial ruin if they did not commit the crime in question, they potentially may be able to use the fact that they acted under duress as a defense against criminal charges. However, feeding an alcohol or drug addiction is not legally considered acting under duress and typically cannot be asserted as a legally valid defense.

Potential Punishments for Identity Theft

Michigan law allows individuals convicted of identity theft to receive maximum penalties of five years in state prison and/or a fine of $250,000. In some instances, the court can impose both a term of incarceration and a hefty fine.

Repeat offenders may face harsher lengths of incarceration of up to 15 years. Regardless of prior offenses, the court may also order that restitution be made to all persons who experienced identity theft, and the person who is convicted may also face lawsuits in civil court for their actions.

How a Troy Identity Theft Attorney Could Help

Although facing an identity theft charge can be intimidating, pleading guilty to an offense without consulting a qualified Troy identity theft lawyer could lead to serious consequences. Before making any concessions, contact an attorney who has experience with approaching an identity theft case in Troy. Call today to arrange a consultation.