Check Fraud Attorney – Brett A. Podolsky
Paper hanging occurs whenever an instrument is issued, and there are insufficient funds in one’s account to cover it. Even the most financially responsible person can make an honest mistake in calculating available funds, which is why Texas law requires that an individual “knowingly” commit this offense. This happens whenever a hot check is issued against a false account or when the individual writing the check knows there are insufficient funds to cover it.
Floating checks is usually punished as a misdemeanor crime. Even so, there are instances when a bad check could result in a felony charge, depending upon the amount of the bounced check. The thresholds and their corresponding punishments are:
- Less than $20: A fine of up to $500
- $20 to $499: A fine of up to $2,000 and as much as 180 days in jail
- $500 to $1,499: A fine of up to $4,000 and up to one year in jail
- $1,500 or more: A fine of up to $10,000 and a minimum of two years behind bars
In addition to these punishments, a worthless check conviction could affect a person financially, as it could reflect negatively on one’s credit report. It could also make it difficult for an individual to find employment where handling money would be an issue.
Defending Against Hot Check Allegations
The burden of proof is always on the government in any criminal matter, and forging checks is no exception. Defending against one’s fraud charges requires an attorney to be diligent in forcing the state of Texas to prove that an individual knowingly issued a bad check. A stable financial history will be beneficial in helping establish reasonable doubt in the minds of jurors as to whether a person intentionally wrote an insufficient check to pay a debt. In some cases, it might be best to try working out a plea arrangement that would allow a defendant to plead to a less serious charge in order to avoid a felony conviction.
A Kiting Attorney in Houston, TX Will Protect You
If you’re being charged with fraudulent checks, you should not give up without a fight. Brett A. Podolsky is a white-collar crimes lawyer who is board-certified in criminal law by the Texas Board of Legal Specialization. He fights aggressively for all his clients, and he will do the same for you. He won’t stop until every piece of evidence has been thoroughly examined, and every avenue of defense possible has been explored.
For a free case review, get in touch with Brett A. Podolsky at 713-227-0087.