Credit card fraud is one of the most common types of fraud crimes. Anyone who illegally uses a credit or debit card with the intent to defraud another party, including a vendor, credit card holder, or credit card company, can be charged with this crime. But, what does this really mean? What constitutes an illegal use of a credit or debit card? Here’s what you should know:
Unauthorized Use of a Credit Card
Using another person’s credit card without their permission is considered credit card fraud in Colorado. This crime can be charged as a felony or misdemeanor, depending on the value of the fraud. For example, charging less than $50 to someone’s card is charged as a class 1 petty offense. However, the crime becomes a felony if the value of the illegally obtained goods is more than $2,000.
Illegal Possession of a Credit Card
In the state of Colorado, it is illegal to have a financial device in your possession that you know is lost or stolen. Since a credit card is classified as a financial device, this means it is illegal to have a lost or stolen credit card in your possession. It’s important to note that you do not need to actually use the lost or stolen credit card in order to be charged with this crime. If it is in your possession, you are violating this law.
Having one unauthorized credit card is a class 1 misdemeanor, however the charges are increased if you have more than one unauthorized credit card in your possession.
Credit card fraud often involves identity theft. For example, let’s say you use someone else’s information to open a credit card account. This is identity theft, so even if you never charge anything to the account, simply getting a credit card with someone else’s information is illegal.
In fact, law enforcement has the right to charge you with this crime even if the credit card application is not approved. The act of applying or completing an application for a credit card with someone else’s information is identity theft, regardless of whether the credit card company issues a card.
If you have been charged with credit card fraud, seek legal representation from the criminal defense attorneys at Reisch Law Firm. Let our team aggressively fight for the best possible outcome in your case. Schedule a free consultation today by calling 303-291-0555 or filling out this online form.