Legal representation for identity theft in Florida and the United States
Identity theft - or identity fraud - is the act of taking someone’s identity in order to obtain credit, credit cards, cash, loans, accounts, employment, or other personal gain.
Under Florida General Statute 817.568, using someone else’s name and personally identifying information subjects you to a potential identity theft charge.
A name, postal or email address, telephone number, social security number, date of birth, mother’s maiden name, official state-issued or United States-issued driver’s license, alien registration number, passport number, employer identification number, Medicaid or food assistance account number, bank account number, credit or debit card number, or personal identification number or code assigned to a debit card;
“Biometric” data such as fingerprints, voice recognition, and retina or iris imaging;
Electronic identification numbers, addresses, or routing codes;
Medical records; and
Telecommunication or identifying information or access devices.
Criminal use or possession of personal identification information
Use or possession of a deceased person’s information
Obtaining property by false personation
Criminal use of personal identification information to harass another
Use of a minor’s personal identification information
Using counterfeit or fictitious personal identification information
Using someone’s credit card or credit account without permission
Selling someone’s driver’s license or other identification card
Using someone’s social security number to apply for benefits
Filling out fraudulent tax returns
Creating false PayPal accounts
Using someone’s login credentials to withdraw money from a bank account
Stealing checks or ATM cards
Under the Florida statute, identity theft is often deemed a first degree misdemeanor, absent aggravating circumstances. However, depending on factors like the way you obtained the information and how you used it, you may face a charge as high as a first degree felony, resulting in twenty years to life in prison and up to $10,000 in fines. A second degree felony carries a sentence of up to fifteen years in prison and a $10,000 fine, and a third degree felony can result in up to five years and $5,000.
Misdemeanor charges result in lesser punishments, ranging from one year in prison and a $1,000 fine to a 60-day sentence and a $500 fine. In some cases, a court may order you to pay the victim restitution.
No matter the specifics of your situation, engaging an identity fraud attorney can help you establish the best defense.