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What is the punishment for identity theft in Missouri?

On Behalf of | Feb 12, 2022 | Criminal Defense |

If you use another person’s personally identifying information without his or her permission and for the purpose of committing fraud or another crime, the state may charge you with identity theft. “Personally identifying information” refers to a person’s name, credit card information, Social Security number and other personal or financial information.

All 50 states and a handful of U.S. territories have specific statutes dealing with identity theft. The National Conference of State Legislatures provides a thorough overview of the penalties for identity theft in Missouri, along with information on its restitution laws.

The consequences for identity theft in Missouri

The consequences of identity theft in Missouri vary considerably and are dependent upon why you committed the crime and how much, if any, in goods or services you misappropriated. However, Missouri does have standard sentencing guidelines for the crime, which are as follows:

  • Attempted identity theft or identity theft that does not result in the misappropriation of funds, goods, services, credit or other property is a class B misdemeanor, which carries a jail sentence of up to six months and a fine of up to $1,000.
  • Identity theft that does result in the misappropriation of funds, goods, services, credit or other property of a value that does not exceed $500 is a class A misdemeanor, which carries a jail sentence of up to one year and a fine of up to $2,000.
  • Identity theft that results in the misappropriation of funds, goods, services, credit or other property that has a value of between $500 and $5,000 is a class C felony, which carries a minimum prison sentence of three years and a fine of up to $10,000 or twice the amount of the offender’s financial gain.
  • Identity theft that results in the misappropriation of funds, credit, goods, services or other property with a value of between $5,000 and $50,000 is a class B felony, which carries a minimum prison sentence of five years.
  • Identity theft that results in the theft of funds, goods, services, credit or other property with a value of more than $50,000 is a class A felony, which carries a minimum prison sentence of 10 years.

If you have a prior conviction on your record for the same or a similar offense, the state may charge you with a class D felony regardless of the value of goods or services you stole.

Restitution for identity theft

In addition to possible jail time and fines, the courts may order you to pay restitution to the victim and/or his or her family. Restitution may include repayment for any costs the victim incurred as a result of your actions, including attorney fees, the cost of clearing one’s credit history and the cost of satisfying any liens, debts or other obligations that arose from your actions.

Identity theft is a serious crime that carries heavy penalties. If you face identity theft charges, you should not try to fight them alone.

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