Union NJ Mortgage Fraud Defense Lawyer
There have been some well publicized mortgage fraud cases in Union County over recent years. In many instances, this offense was filed into companion with money laundering, identity theft and/or forgery charges. If you have a charge for mortgage fraud pending at the Superior Court in Elizabeth, hiring an accomplished defense lawyer is your best option for helping yourself. An attorney who knows his way around the court system and has handled complex criminal matters like yours is going to provide the upmost protection against a conviction. This is exactly what the attorneys on the defense team at The Law Offices of Jonathan F. Marshall can afford you. We have the capabilities to effectively defend your mortgage fraud charge in Elizabeth, Westfield, Union, Mountainside, Rahway or anywhere else. For assistance from one of our lawyers anytime 24/7, contact our office in Union Township New Jersey at 908-272-1700.
Mortgage Fraud Offense in Union County NJ
A mortgage fraud offense is typically filed under N.J.S.A. 2C:21-3 (“Frauds relating to public records and recordable instruments”) and/or N.J.S.A. 2C:21-4 (“Falsifying or tampering with records”). An individual commits a third degree crime under 2C:21-3 if they have a purpose to deceive or injure someone and:
destroys, removes or conceals any will, deed, mortgage, security instrument or other writing for which the law provides public recording. A person is guilty of a disorderly person offense when, knowing that a written instrument contains a false statement or false information, he offers or presents it to a public office or public servant with knowledge or belief that it will be filed with, registered or recorded in or otherwise become a part of the records of such public office or public servant.
There are three (3) elements that must be established by the Union County Prosecutor’s Office in order to prove this offense. First, it must be proven that the defendant acted with a purpose to deceive or injure someone. A deception occurs if the defendant creates or reinforces a false impression or if he prevents another from acquiring information which affects his judgment of a transaction. A deception also occurs if defendant fails to correct a false impression which he has created or reinforced or if he knows the false impression is influencing someone to whom he stands in a fiduciary or confidential relation. The second element is that the fraud was directed at a will, deed, mortgage, security interest or other writing for which the law provides for public recording. The third and final element that the State must prove is that the defendant either destroyed, removed or concealed the writing or instrument.
An individual may also face a fourth degree crime for mortgage fraud under N.J.S.A. 2C:21-4 for tampering with non-public records. Two elements are required in order to convict someone of this pedigree of offense. First, there must be a purpose to deceive or injure or purpose to conceal wrongdoing. The second things that must be established, beyond reasonable doubt, is that the accused falsified, destroyed, removed, concealed a writing or record or that they uttered a writing or record knowing that it contained false information.
A third degree crime for fraud involving a mortgage results in the possibility of imprisonment for between 3 and 5 years and a fine of up to $15,000. Fourth degree forgery of a mortgage or closing documents carries a prison term of up to 18 months and a maximum fine of $10,000.
Elizabeth NJ Mortgage Fraud Attorney
Mortgage fraud is clearly an offense that can lead to jail time and heavy fines so it is naturally inadvisable to tackle the charge without a knowledgeable attorney. Representation by an experienced lawyer is going to provide you with the best opportunity to avoid a conviction and the rather severe penalties that apply if you are convicted. The Law Offices of Jonathan F. Marshall possesses the qualities to serve you well in this role with eight attorneys that have over a century defending offenses in Union County, including Linden, Roselle, Scotch Plains, Cranford and Summit. Lawyers are available now at 908-272-1700 to discuss your mortgage fraud offense.