If you have been accused of forgery in the state of New York, it is important to take such an allegation very seriously. This is because the consequences of a forgery charge could have the potential to affect your career and credibility for many years to come. Make sure that you understand the possible penalties that you are at risk of, as well as the defenses that you have the opportunity to claim.
In the state of New York, there are three different degrees of forgery charges. Third-degree forgery is the least serious of the three, and this can lead to up to one-year imprisonment as well as a $1,000 maximum fine. Second-degree forgery is charged as a felony and has a higher potential to affect your future opportunities. If charged, you could face up to seven years in prison. First-degree forgery is the most serious charge and can result in a maximum of 15 years' imprisonment.
How can I defend myself against a forgery accusation?
In order to be charged with forgery, it must be obvious that the defendant had the intent of committing the crime. Therefore, if you can show that you did not have intent and that the act was an unintentional consequence of a legitimate and legal goal, you may have the charges dismissed.
Similarly, you may be able to show that you accidentally partook in an act of forgery because you were completely unaware that another person was committing fraud.
If you need to defend yourself from a forgery charge in New York, it is important that you do not delay taking action.