Fraud carries with it the moral implication of wrongdoing as well as legal ramifications. A person may commit fraud for a variety of reasons, most of which relate to an attempt to gain income through nefarious means. In Arizona fraud carries stiff penalty, and navigating and negotiating these penalties are best handled with the assistance of an experienced fraud lawyer.
Consumer fraud is probably the most common type of fraud in Arizona, because of its ease of perpetration and its non-violent nature. Committing consumer fraud may seem like a harmless crime that hurts no one. However, its illegality means that hundreds of people are convicted of fraud each year.
To protect its residents, Arizona has codified fraud and its related definitions into the Arizona Consumer Fraud Act. This act states that
“The act, use or employment by any person of any deception, deceptive act or practice, fraud, false pretense, false promise, misrepresentation, or concealment, suppression or omission of any material fact with intent that others rely upon such concealment, suppression or omission, in connection with the sale or advertisement of any merchandise whether or not any person has in fact been misled, deceived, or damaged thereby, is declared to be an unlawful practice.”
This means that if a person feels he has been financially or materially taken advantage of, he has legal recourse. In order to prove liability for fraud in Arizona, the following criteria must be met.
A person must prove that something was represented falsely. This misrepresentation must be known by the perpetrator. This protects the perpetrator of alleged fraud from some of the consequences of an honest mistake. However, cases of unintentional misinformation are sometimes subject to their own legal nuances, such as negligence, especially in cases where human lives are at stake.
The victim must prove the speaker’s intent that the false claim should be acted upon, and his own ignorance to the truth of the matter, and reliance upon the speaker’s (false) claims, and right to rely on these claims. Finally, the victim must prove that he was, in fact, harmed by such false claims. If you’ve been accused of fraud your Arizona lawyer may choose any one of these criteria to prevent a conviction. The burden of proof lies upon the victim to prove victimhood. Your lawyer’s defense may attempt to demonstrate that any one of these criteria have not been met.