Bankruptcy fraud can be a federal offense, leading to years in prison (among other penalties) in the event of conviction.
Because bankruptcy fraud can come in different forms – and because people may not even realize some that certain actions may be considered fraud in bankruptcy cases, below, we will point out some important facts to understand about bankruptcy fraud.
Bankruptcy Fraud: Here’s What You Should Know
There are a few common forms of bankruptcy fraud – Namely, these include lying on bankruptcy court documents, attempting to hide assets from the bankruptcy court and/or using multiple identifies to file multiple bankruptcy cases (sometimes in courts in different states). Bankruptcy fraud can also constitute racking up debt in the weeks before bankruptcy (with the fraud arising from the fact that people have no intentions of repaying this debt).
In many cases, bankruptcy fraud is committed in conjunction with other crimes, such as tax evasion or tax fraud, mortgage fraud and/or mail fraud.
- Bankruptcy trustees, judges and/or creditors can allege bankruptcy fraud – As a bankruptcy case gets underway, those who may allege fraud can be trustees or judges overseeing a case, which can occur when these officials notice discrepancies in court documents, for instance. Alternatively, creditors too may allege fraud in bankruptcy when, for instance, they believe that a debtor racked up charges without any intention of repaying them.
- There are a number of serious consequences of bankruptcy fraud – First and foremost, if there is sufficient reason to believe that fraud has been committed in a bankruptcy case, the court can dismiss the case and deny a discharge of any debts. If this happens, the debtor will never be able to get these debts discharged in a future bankruptcy case (and (s)he will be on the hook to repay them all in full).
Additionally, however, a bankruptcy fraud criminal charge can result in as much as five (5) years in prison, up to $250,000 in fines and other serious penalties. What’s more is that these potential penalties can be imposed for each charge (e.g. each instance of lying on court forms, each hidden asset, etc.).
Want to Avoid Bankruptcy Fraud?
The best thing you can do to avoid facing bankruptcy fraud allegations is to contact an experienced Denver bankruptcy attorney at Garcia & Gonzales, PC. Our attorneys will expertly guide you through the bankruptcy process, helping you retain as much of your assets as possible in legally valid ways.
Through effective bankruptcy planning and representation, we will help you get through bankruptcy as favorably and efficiently as possible so you can start the next chapter in your life.
Contact a Denver Bankruptcy Attorney at Garcia & Gonzales, P.C.
To learn more about your best debt relief options, as well as how we can help you, contact us today by calling (303) 839-8888 or by emailing us using the drop-down contact form at the top of this page.
When you contact us, you will communicate directly with one of our attorneys, not a paralegal or legal assistant. We welcome Spanish-speaking individuals to contact us also – hablamos Español.