Forms of Identity Theft that Result in Serious Criminal Charges

 Posted on February 20, 2017 in Identity Theft

Illinois defense attorney, Illinois criminal lawyer, Ilinois criminal statutesLike all kinds of fraud, identity theft crimes are costly for everyone involved. Some victims of identity theft may end up spending thousands of dollars and countless hours - often over the course of years - to restore their name and remove the damages that have tarnished their record. Offenders face serious criminal charges for such crimes, including prison time and significant monetary penalties, all of which have long-term consequences to the offender’s record and reputation.

Common ID Thefts

There are multiple forms of federal identity theft crimes, but the following three types of ID theft are especially common:


With the overwhelming, ever-growing costs of health care, it is not surprising that medical fraud is a common practice among identity thieves. Medical ID theft is used to obtain medical services and is committed in various ways, including stealing health insurance membership numbers, stealing medicare IDs, or issuing fraudulent billing to an individual’s health insurance provider in order to reap medical and/or financial benefits.


Tax-related identity theft involves stealing someone’s social security number in order to illegally obtain employment or take someone’s tax refund. The offender uses the social security number to file false tax returns with the IRS, which is often discovered by the victim when they realize they owe additional tax, had more than one return filed under their name, or that IRS records indicate they received wages from an unknown employer.


A child’s identity is often the most vulnerable when it comes to identity theft crime, due in part to the fact that a child’s stolen identity can remain undetected for many years, unlike an adult’s. Criminal offenders steal and take control over a child's social security number and name early on, wreaking damage that is discovered much later, when the child becomes an adult. When the fraud is discovered sooner, rather than later, it typically happens when the IRS sends notification that a child did not pay their taxes or when government benefits are denied because they are reportedly being paid to another account under the child’s social security number.

Consequences of the Crime

Identity fraud cases are considered federal crimes, so they are prosecuted according to a number of different federal statutes. Depending on the circumstances surrounding the crime, violating the Identity Theft and Assumption Deterrence Act can mean up to fifteen years of imprisonment for the offender, along with fines. Even a mere scheme to involve yourself with fraudulent identity theft activity places you at risk for violating a variety of statutes.

If you find yourself accused of any of these crimes, time is of the essence. Identity theft crime consequences are far-reaching and can affect your reputation for many years to come. It is imperative you speak with a knowledgeable Chicago federal criminal lawyer in order to understand and protect your rights in a court of law. Call the Law Offices of Hal M. Garfinkel LLC, Chicago Criminal Defense Attorney today at 312-629-0669 for a consultation.


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