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Fraudulent Use of Credit Cards



Understanding Fraudulent Use of Credit Cards

Credit Card Fraud

Credit card fraud in Florida is not just a minor offense; it’s a significant legal issue that can lead to severe consequences. At Leppard Law: Fraud Defense Attorneys, we understand the complexities of these cases and the stress they bring to our clients. This section aims to shed light on what constitutes the fraudulent use of credit cards under Florida law, including the misuse of stolen, forged, or unauthorized credit cards to procure goods or services without consent.

What exactly is considered Fraudulent Use of Credit Cards in Florida? Under Florida Statute 817.61, it involves using a credit card with the intent to defraud a merchant, where the card was unlawally obtained, known to be forged, or used under the pretense that the cardholder authorized its use, to acquire money, goods, services, or anything else of value.

The crime of credit card fraud is uniquely prosecuted in Florida. Known as Aggregate Prosecution, multiple fraudulent uses of a credit card within a six-month period are treated as a single offense rather than multiple distinct crimes. This approach underscores the seriousness with which the state views credit card fraud, emphasizing the need for a robust defense strategy.

At Leppard Law, our experienced Orlando Fraud Defense Attorneys are well-versed in the nuances of credit card fraud cases. We leverage our extensive knowledge and resources to develop effective defense strategies tailored to each client’s unique situation. Understanding the legal definition and elements of credit card fraud is the first step in navigating these complex cases.

Whether facing misdemeanor or felony charges, our team is committed to fighting for the best possible outcome for our clients. We believe in clear, open communication and will guide you through every step of the legal process, ensuring you’re well-informed and prepared. If you or a loved one is dealing with allegations of credit card fraud, contact Leppard Law today to schedule a consultation and learn more about how we can help protect your rights and future.

Penalties for Credit Card Fraud in Florida

When it comes to credit card fraud, Florida law does not take these offenses lightly. The penalties for credit card fraud in the Sunshine State can be severe, with consequences escalating based on the value of the goods obtained and the frequency of the fraudulent activity within a six-month period. Understanding these penalties is crucial for anyone facing such charges.

Credit Card Fraud Penalties

Misdemeanor vs. Felony Fraudulent Use

The distinction between misdemeanor and felony charges for credit card fraud in Florida hinges on two key factors: the total value of goods or services fraudulently obtained and the number of times the credit card was used unlawfully within a six-month span.

  • Misdemeanor Fraudulent Use of a Credit Card: This charge applies if, within any six-month period, the credit card is unlawfully used less than two times, and items valued at less than $100 were obtained. Conviction can lead to up to one year in jail, one year of probation, and a $1,000 fine.
  • Felony Fraudulent Use of a Credit Card: This more serious charge is applied if, within a six-month period, a credit card is unlawally used more than two times, or items valued at more than $100 were obtained. This third-degree felony can result in up to five years in prison, five years of probation, and a $5,000 fine.

What determines the severity of credit card fraud penalties in Florida? The severity is based on the frequency of the fraudulent activity and the total value of the goods or services obtained within a six-month period.

Given these potential consequences, it’s clear that facing charges of credit card fraud in Florida is a serious matter. Whether you’re looking at misdemeanor or felony charges, the impact on your life can be significant. Not only do these charges carry the possibility of jail time and hefty fines, but they can also leave a lasting mark on your criminal record, affecting future employment opportunities, your ability to secure housing, and more.

At Leppard Law: Fraud Defense Attorneys, we understand the gravity of these charges and the stress they can cause. Our team of experienced Orlando Fraud Defense Attorneys is here to provide the aggressive representation you need to fight these charges. We are committed to exploring every avenue of defense on your behalf, aiming to secure the best possible outcome for your case. If you or someone you know is facing charges of credit card fraud, contact us today to learn how we can help.

Examples of Fraudulent Credit Card Use

Imagine this: you’re sifting through your credit card statement and you notice charges that you don’t recognize. From small online purchases to large transactions at electronics stores – these are classic signs of credit card fraud. At Leppard Law, we’ve seen it all, from the simplest unauthorized use to complex schemes involving stolen identities and counterfeit cards. Let’s dive into some common scenarios that illustrate the various faces of credit card fraud.

Hypothetical Case Studies

Consider the following fictional examples to better understand how credit card fraud can manifest:

  • Scenario One: John Doe discovers charges for luxury goods on his credit card statement. Upon investigation, it’s revealed that his card information was skimmed at a gas station, then used to make unauthorized purchases online.
  • Scenario Two: Jane Smith receives a call from her credit card company querying a recent application for a new card. Jane had not applied for a new card, indicating someone had attempted to commit application fraud using her personal information.
  • Scenario Three: Alex Johnson’s wallet is stolen, and before he can report all his cards as missing, the thief goes on a shopping spree, racking up thousands in fraudulent charges.

These scenarios underscore the importance of vigilance and prompt action if you suspect your credit card information has been compromised. The law provides protections, but the first line of defense is always the cardholder.

What is the best action to take if you notice unauthorized charges on your account? Immediately contact your credit card issuer to report the fraud and follow up with a report to the police.

At Leppard Law, we understand the stress and confusion that comes with being a victim of credit card fraud. Our experienced Florida Credit Card Fraud Defense Lawyers are here to help you navigate the legal complexities and work towards rectifying the situation. Whether you’re disputing unauthorized charges or facing accusations of fraud, our team is committed to protecting your rights and interests.

Remember, early detection and reporting are key to minimizing the impact of credit card fraud. Regularly monitor your statements, keep your card information secure, and don’t hesitate to reach out to professionals for help. If you find yourself entangled in a credit card fraud case, whether as a victim or wrongly accused, contact Leppard Law at 407-476-4111 for expert legal assistance.


When facing charges of credit card fraud, understanding your defense options is crucial. At Leppard Law, we tailor our defense strategies to the specifics of your case, ensuring the best possible outcome.

Charges of credit card fraud can feel overwhelming, casting a shadow over your future. However, with the right defense strategy, it’s possible to challenge these allegations effectively. At Leppard Law: Fraud Defense Attorneys, we’ve successfully defended numerous clients against such charges, leveraging our deep understanding of Florida law and a personalized approach to each case.

Defending Against Credit Card Fraud Charges

Under Florida Statute 817.61, credit card fraud encompasses a range of activities, from using a stolen card to forging a cardholder’s signature. The key to a strong defense often lies in challenging the prosecution’s evidence regarding intent to defraud and invoking protections against double jeopardy.

Several defense strategies can be pivotal in credit card fraud cases:

  • Lack of Intent to Defraud: Demonstrating that the accused had no intention to deceive or harm the merchant or cardholder can be a powerful defense. This might involve showing that any misuse was due to a misunderstanding or that the accused believed they had authorization to use the card.
  • Challenging the Evidence: The prosecution must prove beyond a reasonable doubt that the defendant committed the acts knowingly and with fraudulent intent. By challenging the reliability and admissibility of their evidence, we can weaken the prosecution’s case.
  • Double Jeopardy Protections: Invoking double jeopardy protections can be effective if the defendant is charged with multiple offenses for the same act, such as theft and credit card fraud, which are considered degrees of the same offense under Florida law.

Each case is unique, and our strategy will depend on the specific circumstances of your charges. Our approach might involve negotiating with prosecutors for reduced charges or arguing your case in court to secure an acquittal.

Defending Against Credit Card Fraud Charges

At Leppard Law, our team is not just adept at navigating the complexities of credit card fraud defense; we’re also committed to providing a personal touch. We understand that facing criminal charges can be one of the most stressful experiences of your life. That’s why we prioritize clear communication, offering straightforward advice and keeping you informed at every step.

Don’t let credit card fraud charges define your future. With Leppard Law: Fraud Defense Attorneys on your side, you have a team ready to defend your rights and fight for the best possible outcome. Experience the difference of personalized legal representation.

Are you ready to discuss your defense? Call us today at 407-476-4111 for a free consultation. Discover how we can help you navigate your credit card fraud charges with confidence and expertise.

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Infographic depicting the words Fraudulent Use of Credit Cards

What constitutes fraudulent use of credit cards in Florida?

Fraudulent use of credit cards in Florida involves using a credit card with the intent to defraud a merchant. This can include using a card that was unlawfully obtained, known to be forged, or presented under the pretense that the actual cardholder authorized its use to obtain money, goods, services, or anything else of value.

How is fraudulent use of credit cards prosecuted in Florida?

Fraudulent use of credit cards is uniquely prosecuted in Florida. Multiple fraudulent uses of a credit card within a six-month period are treated as a single crime rather than multiple discrete crimes. This approach, known as aggregate prosecution, can significantly impact the severity of charges and penalties.

What are the penalties for fraudulent use of credit cards in Florida?

The penalties for fraudulent use of credit cards in Florida vary based on the value of goods obtained or the number of times the card was used within a six-month span. It can range from a first-degree misdemeanor, punishable by up to one year in jail, to a third-degree felony, punishable by up to five years in prison.

Are there defenses to charges of fraudulent use of credit cards?

Yes, there are specific defenses to charges of fraudulent use of credit cards, including challenging the evidence of intent to defraud and invoking double jeopardy protections. Successfully arguing these defenses can lead to charges being reduced or dismissed.

Exploring related areas of legal practice is essential for a comprehensive defense strategy. Here are additional case types we specialize in:

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Top-Rated Fraudulent Use of Credit Cards Attorneys Serving Florida

Choosing the appropriate legal representation is crucial when pursuing a claim. A seasoned, committed attorney ensures you’re equipped to make informed choices at each phase of the process.

  • John Vallillo: John Vallillo is renowned for his tenacity and attention to detail, offering personalized and effective legal representation for fraud charges.
  • Joe Easton: Joe Easton specializes in challenging evidence and negotiating favorable outcomes, with a deep commitment to justice for fraud defense.
  • Joel Leppard: Joel Leppard brings strategic thinking and skilled negotiation to fraud cases, achieving numerous dismissals and reduced charges for his clients.

Discover What Our Clients Are Saying

Our dedication to excellence in Fraud is evident in every case we undertake. The positive feedback from our clients is a testament to the hard work and dedication we consistently deliver.

Infographic depicting the words Fraudulent Use of Credit Cards

Take Control of Your Future with Leppard Law

Being charged with fraudulent use of credit cards can feel like navigating through a storm without a compass. At Leppard Law: Fraud Defense Attorneys, we understand the anxiety and uncertainty that comes with facing criminal charges. That’s why we’re committed to standing by your side, offering guidance, support, and the aggressive defense you need to protect your rights and your future.

With over 60 years of combined experience and a track record of success in defending Floridians against criminal charges, our team is not just skilled in the courtroom; we’re passionate about justice and dedicated to the individuals we serve. We’re not just your attorneys; we consider you part of our family.

Your case deserves personal attention and a tailor-made defense strategy. That’s exactly what we provide. From the moment you reach out to us, you’ll feel the difference. We take the time to know you and your case, ensuring that every step we take is in your best interest.

Our accolades speak to our commitment to excellence:

Don’t let a charge define your future. At Leppard Law, we’re ready to fight for you, ensuring that you have the expert defense you need to face your charges with confidence. Whether you’re dealing with a misdemeanor or a felony, our approach is the same: relentless, personalized, and always in your corner.

Experience the difference a dedicated, compassionate, and skilled legal team can make in your case. Contact us today at 407-476-4111 to schedule your free consultation. Let’s navigate this storm together and work towards the best possible outcome for your future.

Legally Reviewed by Joe Easton

Expert Attorney

Legally reviewed by Joe Easton and the content team, this article reflects the firm’s 60 years of combined expertise in handling fraudulent use of credit cards. Joe Easton, with his extensive experience and strategic prowess in financial fraud and criminal defense, offers more than just legal representation; he brings a commitment to turning legal challenges into victories. His approach, combining tenacity in the courtroom with personalized client care, ensures your case is not just defended but championed with dedication and expertise.

Learn More About Joe Easton