Anyone accused of corporate fraud should act immediately to protect their rights and reputation. Accusations of fraud are not something that can be taken lightly. That is why many people and companies facing these accusations choose to retain legal counsel to protect their freedom and career. Being convicted of any type of fraud can have serious legal and financial consequences. Many people do not know what steps to take to defend themselves and their businesses against the allegations.

Whether or not the accusations are false, consider speaking with a lawyer to understand your rights and options. You can get a free case evaluation from our experienced civil litigation and business lawyer at The Law Office of Jonathan Fleisher, Esq. Call our legal team today at 732.360.6409.

Types of Corporate Fraud

There are many types of corporate fraud, all of which encompass the loss of assets or funds by a business or acts perpetrated by individuals or businesses to take funds from others. Common types of corporate fraud include:

  • Misappropriation of assets
  • Skimming
  • Customer fraud
  • Vendor fraud
  • Employee fraud
  • Financial fraud
  • Investment scams
  • Cashing/writing bad checks
  • Payroll fraud
  • Invoice fraud
  • Financial statement fraud
  • Tax fraud
  • Return fraud
  • Identity theft
  • Misuse of accounts
  • False accounting
  • Fraudulent expense claims
  • Forgery
  • Bribery
  • Corruption

According to the 2020 Global Study on Occupational Fraud and Abuse, organizations lose an estimated 5% of revenue to fraud each year.

Criminal charges for corporate fraud may be the result of mistakes or misunderstandings. If you are accused of corporate fraud, consider contacting a knowledgeable attorney to discuss your defense options.

10 Steps to Take if You Are Accused of Corporate Fraud

Facing accusations of corporate fraud can be both confusing and scary. Many people panic and end up making mistakes when they become aware of such accusations against them or an ongoing investigation.

That is why it is important to know what steps to take when facing accusations of corporate fraud to protect your rights, reputation, and future.

1. Take the Accusations Seriously

The first thing you should do if you or your company has been accused of corporate fraud is realize the seriousness of the matter. Even if you know that the accusations are false, there is no guarantee that the investigators, judge, or jury will side with you. In New Jersey, you could be facing three to five years in prison and up to $15,000 in fines, depending on the severity of the alleged fraud.

2. Do Not Talk to Investigators Without Considering Legal Counsel First

While it may be tempting to talk to investigators to tell them that you are innocent, doing so could potentially make things even worse. Investigators could use your words against you. For this reason, consider consulting with a lawyer before you talk to anybody about the corporate fraud accusations.

3. Do Not Admit Fault

Some people facing allegations of fraud unintentionally admit fault or say something that is construed as admitting guilt. It is vital to choose your words carefully when trying to tell your side of the story, whether you are talking to police, investigators, or even colleagues. The things you say could come back to haunt you and reduce your chance of a favorable outcome.

4. Know Your Rights

You have a right to speak with an attorney when facing accusations of corporate fraud. Our experienced business attorneys at The Law Office of Jonathan Fleisher, Esq. will work tirelessly to protect your rights and make sure that you understand your options. Anything you say to your attorney will be protected by the attorney-client privilege, which is why you should provide your attorney with as much information as possible so that they can develop a strong defense for you.

5. Gather Evidence

Building a strong case will increase the likelihood of a favorable outcome, which is why it is critical to gather evidence and documentation proving that the accusations against you are false or exaggerated. If you are accused of corporate fraud, a skilled attorney could help you identify the types of evidence and documentation that you need to build a defense. Evidence may include emails, letters, receipts, bank account statements, and many more.

6. Talk to Witnesses

Obtaining witness statements is an important element of building a defense when facing accusations of corporate fraud. Witnesses play a critical role in any fraud cases, which is why you should identify all potential witnesses and obtain their statements to strengthen your defense.

7. Write Down Anything That Could Be Relevant to Your Case

If you are charged with corporate fraud or become aware of an ongoing investigation, it could be helpful to write down anything that might pertain to your case. Legal proceedings can take years, and memories fade over time, which is why your written notes will help you remember all important details throughout the duration of your case.

8. Build Your Defense

If someone accused you of corporate fraud, consider contacting an attorney to start building your defense. An attorney can build a strong defense by conducting an independent investigation, interviewing witnesses, gathering evidence, negotiating with prosecutors, and taking other steps to protect their client.

9. Find Weaknesses in the Opposing Side’s Case

When defending clients in corporate fraud cases, attorneys will comb through the evidence brought against their clients to find weaknesses in the opposing side’s case. Weaknesses can include factual errors, inconsistencies, contradicting data, and others.

10. Demonstrate the Lack of Intent to Commit Fraud

Under NJ Rev Stat § 2C:21-1, one of the elements that the prosecution must prove to convict a person of fraud is proving that the defendant had the intent to commit fraud. If you can demonstrate the lack of intent and can prove that you were behaving in good faith, you could convince the judge and jury that you are innocent.

Learn More About Your Legal Rights When You Are Accused of Corporate Fraud Today

Facing fraud or any finance-related criminal offenses is a serious matter. The consequences of a fraud conviction in New Jersey are severe. Accusations of corporate fraud can ruin your reputation, career, and future, which is why you need to act immediately.

If you or your company is accused of corporate fraud in New Jersey, consider contacting a skilled lawyer to gather evidence and prepare a strong defense on your behalf. Schedule a free consultation with our results-driven and dedicated business attorney at The Law Office of Jonathan Fleisher, Esq. to discuss your legal options. Call 732.360.6409 to speak to our legal team today.