Is Identity Theft a Federal Crime?

license, passport, and social security card close up

If you are charged with a federal offense, you are accused of violating national laws. These are incredibly serious charges and can encompass numerous types of crimes. Let’s discuss whether or not identity theft can be a federal charge.

What is Identity Theft?

Identity theft occurs when someone uses someone else’s personal information or identity to benefit in some way. Typically, individuals commit identity theft for financial reasons.

Types of personal information often used in identity theft cases include:

  • Social security number
  • Full legal name
  • Address
  • Birthday
  • I.D. card
  • Credit card
  • Bank information

Will Identity Theft Result in State or Federal Charges?

Identity theft could result in either or both state or federal charges. In Michigan, identity theft is a felony offense. If convicted, the defendant faces up to five years in prison and thousands of dollars in fines.

The defendant may also face federal charges in conjunction with the state felony charge. This is true if the identity theft involved people in multiple states, a federal agency, or violated federal laws.

Potential penalties for federal identity theft penalties include:

  • Up to 15 years in prison
  • Thousands of dollar in fines
  • Asset forfeiture

A defendant facing both felony and federal charges can also face penalties for each separate charge. For example, if they receive a sentence of five years for the felony offense and five years for the federal crime, they could serve a total of 10 years.

Michigan Identity Theft Defense Attorneys

Whether you are facing state or federal charges for identity theft, you need a strong and knowledgeable defense team by your side. Both types of charges involve serious penalties and if convicted, you face long-lasting consequences. At Levine & Levine Attorneys at Law, we want to help you avoid an identity theft conviction by providing you with top-tier criminal defense. To get started with our team, click here or call (269) 218-8880.