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Cleveland Credit Card Fraud Attorneys

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Depending on the nature of the offense, credit card fraud can be charged as a state or federal crime. When it falls under state jurisdiction, it’s either a misdemeanor or felony – with the level and degree depending on the amount of damage involved. Under federal jurisdiction, if the offense involves the use of the credit card to obtain goods or services valued at $1,000 or more, it’s always a felony. Whether you’re facing state or federal charges for credit card fraud, you can be subject to severe conviction penalties. Thus, you need the help of a lawyer who will do what is necessary to seek a favorable result on your behalf.

At HMW Law, our Cleveland credit card fraud attorneys have over 75 years of combined experience. Throughout that time, we have achieved victories for past clients, including dismissals and acquittals. Propelled by a winning attitude, we know what it takes to get results. We truly care about the people we serve and are passionate about helping those accused of crimes. When you turn to us, our team can get started on your case right away and can explore every legal option to defend you and work toward obtaining the best possible outcome.

Ohio’s Credit Card Statute

Ohio Revised Code 2913.21 refers to credit card fraud as misuse of credit cards.

The law provides that it’s illegal for a person to do any of the following:

  • Use deception to obtain a credit card;
  • Buy or sell a credit card knowing the purchaser or seller wasn’t the issuer;
  • Misuse a government credit card

Additionally, if the person intends to defraud another, it is unlawful to:

  • Use a credit card as security over debt,
  • Purchase or furnish property or services,
  • Falsely report to the issuer that property or services have been provided

Allow our credit card fraud attorneys in Cleveland to review the specifics of your case. After we understand the situation from your perspective, we can discuss what defenses may be available to you and how we can develop a compelling argument to challenge the accusations.

Potential Conviction Penalties for Credit Card Fraud Under State Law

Whether credit card fraud is charged as a felony or misdemeanor depends on the value of the property or services obtained.

Charges may be assessed as follows:

  • First-degree misdemeanor for damages under $1,000:
    • Up to 180 days in jail and/or
    • Up to $1,000 in fines
  • Fifth-degree felony for damages between $1,000 and $7,499:
    • Up to 12 months in prison and/or
    • Up to $ 2,500 in fines
  • Fourth-degree felony for damages between $7,500 and $149,999:
    • Up to 18 months in prison and/or
    • Up to $5,000 in fines
  • Third-degree felony for damages of $150,000 or more:
    • Up to 36 months in prison and/or
    • Up to $10,000 in fines

If the alleged victim of the credit card fraud was an elderly person or disabled adult, a court can impose enhanced penalties. For instance, if the value of the property or services was between $1,000 and $7,499, the offense is a fourth-degree felony punishable by up to 18 months in prison. This is 6 months longer than the maximum sentence that can be imposed for the crime had the victim not been a member of a protected class. Also, if a person is found guilty of credit card fraud against an elderly person or disabled adult, they may be ordered to pay a maximum $50,000 fine and full restitution to the victim.

Credit Card Fraud Under 15 U.S.C. § 1644

Federal law prohibits people from engaging in specific conduct with counterfeit, fictitious, altered, forged, or fraudulently obtained credit cards.

The following unlawful acts fall under federal jurisdiction when they affect interstate or foreign commerce:

  • Using or attempting to use the credit card
  • Transporting or attempting to transport the credit card;
  • Selling the credit card; or
  • Receiving or concealing goods, services, or tickets obtained with the credit card

When it is a federal offense, credit card fraud is punishable by up to 10 years in prison and/or a fine of up to $10,000.

Get Started on Your Case Today

For the defense you need to fight your charge, reach out to HMW Law. Our Cleveland credit card fraud lawyers have the knowledge, skills, and resources required to give you and your case the attention you deserve.