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Actions to Take When Charged with Fraud

Fraud is a serious crime, even though it is not physical. Fraud is wrongful deception intended to result in financial or personal gain. This should not be confused with embezzlement, which is when someone entrusts you with their finances or assets. Fraud involves taking action upon lies and misrepresentation. There are a few important actions to take if charged with fraud, as well as possible defenses your attorney may use to defend your case.

Immediate Actions to Take When Charged or Under Investigation

If charged with fraud or under investigation, there are a few actions you can take immediately to protect yourself. These actions are important if you are under investigation for any criminal charge:

  • Exercise your right to remain silent to avoid incriminating yourself
  • Acquire an experienced criminal defense attorney
  • Do not allow law enforcement to search your property without a valid search warrant.

Possible Defenses in Fraud Cases

Non-fraudulent Statements

A lie does not automatically result in fraud. A misleading statement needs to be connected to fact and action. A non-fraudulent statement could be a misunderstanding, a promise to do something in the future, or misleading opinion.

Absence of intent to commit a crime

To be convicted of fraud, there needs to be proof that there was the intent to deceive. Accidentally using another person’s debit or credit card is not fraud if it was truly an accident. If there was intent to use someone’s card, then that is fraud.


Entrapment occurs when the government or law enforcement compels an individual to commit the crime they would not have otherwise committed without their intervention. Simply providing the opportunity to commit the crime is not entrapment. A criminal defense attorney will be able to decide whether this is a good defense for your case.

Insufficient evidence

Although insufficient evidence is a possible defense, it may not work in some cases as it may be difficult to claim. If the judge and jury can find you guilty beyond a reasonable doubt, this will not work.


Cases of fraud often turn on complex evidence requiring both sophisticated analysis and a clear presentation in court, which is why a criminal defense attorney is advised. At Hart Law Office, our attorneys have both the knowledge to identify the important information and the trial experience to deliver it in a clear, convincing manner. Contact us if you have been charged with fraud.

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