The crime of identity theft is committed when an individual unlawfully uses another individual’s private information in order to commit fraud. The kinds of personal information used in this crime are other people’s names, Social Security number, bank account number, credit card number, birth date, taxpayer identification number and/or driver’s license number.

Because of the severity of this crime, there are both state and federal laws applicable to penalize this crime. The following are some of the ways that this crime is committed:

• Use of another individual’s personal identification to violate a Federal law;
• Use of another individual’s personal identification to commit or attempt to commit a felony;
• Knowingly and illegally possessing false identification;
• Knowing possession of a stolen form of identification;

The central law on this crime is the Identity Theft and Assumption Deterrence Act of 1998. As such, federal law is applicable and the penalties imposable include payment of monetary fines and incarceration in a state penal facility of up to twenty five (25) years.

The following are the five categories of identity theft:

• Business/commercial identity theft or the use of another’s business name to obtain credit;
• Criminal identity theft or posing as another person when apprehended for a crime;
• Financial identity theft or use of another’s identity to obtain credit, goods and services;
• Identity cloning or use of another’s information to assume his or her identity in daily life;
• Medical identity theft or use of another’s identity to obtain medical care or drugs;

The crime of identity theft is a serious matter in California. Should you be or know anyone facing any of these charges, do reach out to the lawyers at the Law Offices of Ramiro J. Lluis for a free consultation today.