Under California Penal Code 530 identity theft occurs when a person unlawfully and intentionally acquires and retains possession of personal identifying information of another person.
How Does Identity Theft Occur?
Identity theft occurs when a person uses your personal identifying information without permission to commit fraud or other theft related crimes. Identity theft crimes can include obtaining a consumers:
- Credit Card Number
- Credit Card Account Information
- Driver’s License Number
- Social Security Number
- Tax ID Numbers
- Bank Account Information
- Passport Information
- Information contained in birth and death certificates
Types of Identity Theft Penal Code 530.5 PC
Penal Code 530.5 PC covers four types of identity theft which is prohibited in California
- willfully obtaining another person’s personal identifying information and using that information for any unlawful purpose without that person’s consent
- acquiring or retaining possession of another person’s personal identifying information and using that information for any unlawful purpose without that person’s consent with the intent to commit a fraud;
- selling, transferring or providing the personal identifying information of another person and using that information for any unlawful purpose without that person’s consent with the intent to commit a fraud;
- selling, transferring or providing the personal identifying information of another person with the actual knowledge that the information will be used to commit a fraud.
What is Considered as Personal Identifying Information?
Personal identifying information
- names, date of birth, addresses and telephone numbers,
- tax I.D. and social security numbers,
- driver’s license numbers and passport information,
- school I.D. and employee I.D. numbers,
- bank account and/or credit card account information, and
- information contained in birth and death certificates.
Identity Theft Penalties in California
California’s identity theft is considered a wobbler offense. A “wobbler” offense is a crime which the prosecutor may file the charges as either a misdemeanor or a felony depending on
- the facts of your case; and
- defendants criminal history.
Penalties for Misdemeanor Identity Theft in California
Penalties for misdemeanor identity theft in California include:
- up to one year in a county jail; and/or
- a maximum $1,000 fine.
Penalties for Felony Identity Theft in California
Felony identity theft charges in California carry punishment of:
- 16 months, or two or three years in county jail, and
- court order to pay compensatory damages to the victim(s) that suffered damages, other fines, parole, and/or probation
- maximum fine of $10,000.
Identity Theft Related Crimes
There are a handful of crimes that are related to identity theft. Prosecutors often charge these offenses in connection with or in lieu of Penal Code 530.5 PC. Some of the most common include identity theft related crimes are
- California Credit Card Fraud
- California Penal Code 502 Unauthorized Computer Access
- Check Fraud
- Grand Theft
- Unemployment Insurance Fraud
Identity Theft Lawyer in Los Angeles
If you have been charged with an identity theft crime in Los Angeles, or an identity theft crime in Glendale, Beverly Hills, or in Orange County it is important that you seek help from a experienced Los Angeles identity theft lawyer with extensive experience with identity theft, credit card fraud, and fraud related crimes. Call now for a free consultation and case review at (213) 401-2777.