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California Credit Card Fraud Lawyers

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What is Credit Card Theft?

Credit card theft happens when an individual steals someone’s credit card or the information on their credit card. The individual then attempts to or successfully uses the credit card without the owner’s permission. In California, credit card theft is referred to as credit card fraud.

What is Credit Card Fraud Law in California?

Credit card fraud is defined as obtaining a person’s card with intent to gain value from the credit card. The card or information on the card must be taken without permission.

What is An Access Card?

An access card is a term used to mean credit card, debit card, or anything used to obtain “value”. Value is described as:

  • Money
  • Services
  • Things of value 

Do I Have to Physically Have the Card in My Possession to Be Charged with Credit Card Fraud?

No. Anyone can be charged with credit card fraud in California if they have the information on the card. It’s also a crime to possess the access card with the intent to use it without actually using it.  A person can be charged with this crime if they transfer or sell the information, but never personally use the card or information on it.

What Type of Theft Does California Consider Credit Card Fraud?

Credit card fraud is considered grand theft. Grand theft involves taking either property or money over a certain amount. On some occasions, credit card fraud may be considered a petty theft misdemeanor

What is the Criminal Punishment for Credit Card Fraud in California?

The state considers this crime a “wobbler.” A wobbler can be a misdemeanor or felony. If charged as a misdemeanor, it’s one year in jail and probation. If it’s a felony, it’s one to three years in prison. 

Should I Hire an Attorney to Help Me with My Credit Card Fraud Charge?

Yes, when facing such a serious crime, a criminal lawyer can help you understand your rights and possible defenses.

Photo of page author Taelonnda Sewell

, LegalMatch Legal Writer

Last Modified: 05-09-2016 11:35 AM PDT

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