4th Oct 2016
A South Florida criminal defense attorney can be an important ally for someone facing forgery or uttering offenses. A South Florida criminal defense attorney discusses what constitutes a charge of this nature and evaluates ways to defend someone accused of a crime of this nature.
In Florida, it is considered forgery when someone makes, alters or falsifies a legal document, public record, check, promissory note, form of currency, ticket regarding transit, insurance policy or other documents that have some type of value. In order for the prosecution to prove its case, it must show that the defendant had the intent to injure or otherwise defraud a person. Forgery is also considered having ten or more forged checks with the intent to use these checks.
Another potential crime that a Florida civilian may face is that of uttering. Uttering means that someone offers the forged document as true. Again, the prosecution is tasked with proving that the defendant had the intent to defraud. Additionally, the prosecution must show that the person knew the document was forged.
A criminal defense attorney will review the charges against the defendant and work on ways that he or she can present a defense to them. Being convicted of a crime of this nature often carries significant criminal penalties. Forgery and uttering are considered felonies in the third degree. These crimes are punishable by a maximum of five years in prison and a fine of $5,000. Individuals who have a prior criminal history are usually punished more harshly than first time offenders. A criminal defense attorney can help mitigate the possible punishment that a client faces by advocating for a plea agreement that provides for a lighter sentence or a reduced charge. Probation may be an option in some cases.