Criminal fraud is the criminal act of deceiving a person through false representation of a fact. The deceived individual relies on the fact to their detriment. The fraud does not always involve an individual as the victim. It can involve deceiving a financial institution. This type of criminal fraud is called bank fraud.

What Is Bank Fraud?

Bank fraud, which is which is a form of financial fraud and typically a white-collar crime, involves knowingly committing or attempting to commit a scheme to defraud a financial institution. The scheme may include obtaining property under the financial institution’s control or money.

How Is Bank Fraud Committed?

Bank fraud can occur in several different ways, such as:

  • Fraudulent means
  • False pretenses 
  • False promises
  • Fraudulent representations
  • False statements

What Is Considered a False Statement?

False statements are untrue statements made with the intent to deceive a financial institution. The untrue statements put the person making them in a more favorable light. Making such statements can be advantageous when a person is attempting to get a loan from a bank and they would never qualify for the loan if they were honest about their ability and intent to pay back the loan.

How Can I Be Proven Guilty of Making a False Statement?

Each state has different elements to prove making false statements in bank fraud. In general, the elements that a prosecutor must prove in order to find a person guilty are:

  1. The making of false statements or reports
  2. The intent to use the false statement to influence a financial institution
  3. The appearance of the false statement in any application, commitment, loan, or financial document

Are There Different Types of Bank Fraud?

Yes. Bank fraud is a general term, and it encompasses:

  • Bankruptcy fraud
  • Check fraud
  • Mortgage fraud
  • Loan fraud
  • Credit card fraud
  • Wire fraud
  • Counterfeit documents fraud
  • Securities fraud
  • Money laundering or embezzlement
  • False loan application
  • Forged currency fraud

Do I Need a Bank Fraud Lawyer?

Yes, you need a criminal lawyer if you have been accused of, charged with, or investigated for bank fraud. A bank fraud charge is complex, and the elements vary from jurisdiction to jurisdiction. To learn more about your legal rights and defense options, contact a lawyer.