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New Jersey Criminal Statutes 2C:21-17 to 2C:21-17.6. Identity Theft

Wall New Jersey Criminal Defense Attorneys serving Monmouth County, Ocean County, Middlesex County and all surrounding NJ areas.

2C:21-17. Impersonation; theft of identity

a. A person is guilty of an offense if the person:

(1) Impersonates another or assumes a false identity and does an act in such assumed character or false identity for the purpose of obtaining a benefit for himself or another or to injure or defraud another;

(2) Pretends to be a representative of some person or organization and does an act in such pretended capacity for the purpose of obtaining a benefit for himself or another or to injure or defraud another;

(3) Impersonates another, assumes a false identity or makes a false or misleading statement regarding the identity of any person, in an oral or written application for services, for the purpose of obtaining services;

(4) Obtains any personal identifying information pertaining to another person and uses that information, or assists another person in using the information, in order to assume the identity of or represent himself as another person, without that person’s authorization and with the purpose to fraudulently obtain or attempt to obtain a benefit or services, or avoid the payment of debt or other legal obligation or avoid prosecution for a crime by using the name of the other person; or

(5) Impersonates another, assumes a false identity or makes a false or misleading statement, in the course of making an oral or written application for services, with the purpose of avoiding payment for prior services. Purpose to avoid payment for prior services may be presumed upon proof that the person has not made full payment for prior services and has impersonated another, assumed a false identity or made a false or misleading statement regarding the identity of any person in the course of making oral or written application for services.

c. A person who violates subsection a. of this section is guilty of a crime as follows:

(1) If the actor obtains a benefit or deprives another of a benefit in an amount less than $ 500 and the offense involves the identity of one victim, the actor shall be guilty of a crime of the fourth degree except that a second or subsequent conviction for such an offense constitutes a crime of the third degree; or

(2) If the actor obtains a benefit or deprives another of a benefit in an amount of at least $ 500 but less than $ 75,000, or the offense involves the identity of at least two but less than five victims, the actor shall be guilty of a crime of the third degree; or

(3) If the actor obtains a benefit or deprives another of a benefit in the amount of $ 75,000 or more, or the offense involves the identity of five or more victims, the actor shall be guilty of a crime of the second degree.

Overview of Penalties for Identity Theft in New Jersey

Statute Title Statute, penalties and restitution Impersonation; theft of identity; crime Restitution Use of personal identifying information of another, certain; second degree crime Trafficking in personal identifying information pertaining to another person, certain; crime degrees; terms defined If the actor obtains a benefit or deprives another of a benefit in an amount less than $500 and the offense involves the identity of one victim, the actor shall be guilty of a crime of the fourth degree except that a second or subsequent conviction for such an offense constitutes a crime of the third degree;If the actor obtains a benefit or deprives another of a benefit in an amount of at least $500 but less than $75,000, or the offense involves the identity of at least two but less than five victims, the actor shall be guilty of a crime of the third degree;If the actor obtains a benefit or deprives another of a benefit in the amount of $75,000 or more, or the offense involves the identity of five or more victims, the actor shall be guilty of a crime of the second degree.Restitution to a victim of an offense under N.J.S.2C:21-1, N.J.S.2C:21-17, N.J.S.2C:21-17.3 when the offense concerns personal identifying information may include costs incurred by the victim: (a) in clearing the credit history or credit rating of the victim; or (b) in connection with any civil or administrative proceeding to satisfy any debt, lien, or other obligation of the victim arising as a result of the actions of the defendant.

  • Crime of the fourth degree – one item pertaining to another person
  • Crime of the third degree – 20 items pertaining to five or more separate persons
  • Crime of the second degree – 50 items pertaining to five or more separate persons

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