There are many federal crimes that people should not partake in, but one that needs to be discussed is a forgery. Forgery is an interesting kind of white-collar crime. It happens when a person copies or reproduces a document, signature or other item and claims it is the original, authentic item.
Not all instances of putting someone else’s signature on a document constitutes a forgery. There are specific rules in place to make sure that only those who intend to harm others through forgery and truly break the law face penalties.
What does a forgery case have to have?
The prosecution has to show that:
- There was an intention to defraud others
- There are fake or fraudulent documents that were claimed to be authentic or that were made without the consent of an authorized party
The most important factor here is that the intention had to be to defraud others. For example, if a teen takes their parent’s credit card, with permission, to a local store and signs their name for a purchase, then that wouldn’t be the same as someone else stealing the card and forging a signature to make a purchase.
If you’re accused of forging a person’s signature on a will, to make a purchase with a credit card, to access a bank account or in any other circumstance, you could be in deep trouble with the law very quickly. Your attorney can work with you to build a defense that explains your actions and takes steps to minimize the impact of the claims against you on your life.