Consumer fraud is one of the most common types of “white collar” crimes. According to the Federal Trade Commission (FTC), in 2007 alone, over $1.2 billion was lost through consumer fraud. It is important to realize that just because consumer fraud is not physically violent like burglary or assault, doesn’t mean it’s a “victimless crime” — and in the eyes of the New Jersey court system, individuals convicted of committing consumer fraud could be facing very severe financial penalties.
If you have been charged with committing consumer fraud in the state of New Jersey, you need to retain an aggressive and experienced consumer fraud attorney to defend you right away. Prosecutors are expertly trained to overwhelm and intimidate — it is simply not in your best interests to attempt to defend your own case. But you can rest easy that with Maselli Warren on your side, you’re in good hands. Our consumer fraud attorneys have over 25 years of experience. Now, let us put that experience to work for you. Call our law offices at (800) 891-2657 today to arrange for a legal consultation.
What is Consumer Fraud?
Fraud, in general, refers to any deliberate and knowing criminal action intended to result in personal financial gain (e.g. embezzlement). Consumer fraud applies to individuals rather than businesses. According to the New Jersey Consumer Fraud Act, consumer fraud is defined as “any unconscionable commercial practice, deception, fraud, false pretense, false promise or misrepresentation” related to the sale, rental, or distribution of:
- real estate
New Jersey consumer fraud laws are some of the toughest in the country. Being charged with consumer fraud in New Jersey, therefore, presents even more of a challenge than it might in other geographic locations.
The good news is, you don’t have to go it alone. Maselli Warren has been defending clients across New Jersey for over two decades. Our attorneys are courtroom veterans who have real-world experience in handling even the most challenging and complex of consumer fraud cases. Over the years, Maselli Warren has represented clients facing allegations of consumer fraud related to:
- car dealership transactions
- home improvements disputes
- construction claims
- disputes regarding the sale of goods
Penalties for Consumer Fraud in New Jersey
In New Jersey, there are two basic types of penalties for a conviction of consumer fraud: treble damages, and attorney fees.
Treble damages are essentially synonymous with “triple damages,” which work just as the name suggests. With treble damages, the guilty party must pay triple the amount of the financial damages they caused in the first place. For example, if the guilty party embezzled $20,000, they would have to pay $60,000. It should be noted that the penalty of treble damages is mandatory.
On top of treble damages, there are attorney fees. It’s normal to have to pay for the services rendered by your own attorney — but in the case of consumer fraud, the guilty party becomes required to pay for the other party’s attorney fees as well.
A conviction of consumer fraud can be devastatingly expensive, and individuals found guilty can be set back years or even decades by massive debt. It is critical that you retain a knowledgeable consumer fraud attorney immediately. At Maselli Warren, P.C., we have successfully litigated consumer fraud cases across New Jersey, achieving excellent results for our clients. Having an experienced litigator in the area of consumer fraud is absolutely critical to your courtroom success. Contact Maselli Warren online, or call us right away at (800) 891-2657.