Forgery is the act of fraudulently or falsely altering or creating a document, such as a check. Depending on how severe the act was, a forgery crime can be classified as a felony, gross misdemeanor, or a misdemeanor. Altering, making, possessing or uttering, reproducing and endorsing, and using these fraudulent items are what makes forgery a crime.

There are also acts that are considered aggravated forgery and this means the fines and jail or prison sentences are increased. They include forging a document that, when it is authentic, creates legal rights or obligations or privileges. Public records, official seals, court degrees and orders, accounting records, and financial instruments are all items that can be forged. If you are accused of such an act, it is important to speak to an experienced Minneapolis forgery lawyer immediately.

Types Of Forgery

There are different types of forgery with the first being the traditional form of forgery, which is false writing for recommendation or identification with the intent to defraud, injure, or destroy; and the altering or falsifying of records or documents.

Aggravated forgery occurs when the fraudulent writing is one that impersonates or affects significant authority, such as a corporation’s official seal, a court judgment, or a public record.

Minneapolis & St. Paul Forgery Defense Attorney

Check forgery is the most common type of forgery seen throughout Minnesota and the United States. Creating a false check or altering an existing check so that it appears to have been written by another person are two acts of check fraud. When a person is sentenced for check forgery, it is based upon the value of the services or property that was received as a result of the fraud. The amount of the forged check also has weight.

Forgery Penalties in Minnesota

In the case of check fraud, an amount over $35,000 constitutes a 20 year prison sentence and a fine of $100,000. If the amount is less than $250, then there is a 1 year jail sentence and a $3,000 fine.

If currency is counterfeited, then there is a 20 year prison sentence and/or a $100,000 fine for counterfeiting more than $35,000. The penalties are much the same as check forgery penalties. If it is the state lottery system that is defrauded, then that constitutes a felony and that means jail time and fines based on the amount of monetary damages done to the state.

Lastly, a counterfeit drivers’ license or identification card is also going to result in a gross misdemeanor. Repeat offenses result in a felony charge. If you are charged with either, it is important to speak to your Minnesota forgery lawyer as soon as you know you are being investigated or charged so that your legal rights are protected.

Contact A Minneapolis Forgery Lawyer Who Can Fight For You

If you have been charged with forgery or any kind of fraud, it is imperative that you contact a criminal defense attorney who is knowledgeable, passionate, and aggressive in the assertion of your rights and your defense strategy. With a solid defense, the chances of your case being dismissed or the charges reduced increases significantly. To find out more about how The Law Office of John J. Leunig can help you, call 952-540-6800 for a free consultation.