A NY Defense Lawyer Explains Consequences of Jewelry Insurance Fraud
Homeowners and renters’ insurance policies generally provide some coverage for jewelry along with other valuables. However, individuals with expensive watches, rings, or other jewelry items may choose to purchase additional coverage because standard policies usually only pay a limited amount for jewelry items. When you have jewelry worth thousands, having coverage in case of robbery or loss is important to protect your investment.
In some cases, however, insurance providers believe that claims made on jewelry insurance policies are fraudulent. If you are accused of making a claim for losses that shouldn’t be covered or of staging a robbery, you could face serious criminal penalties. The National Insurance Crime Bureau partners with local law enforcement to identify suspicious claims and find fraud. If police are investigating you or if you have been arrested for a fraud crime, contacting a lawyer is the best option you have for trying to stay out of jail.
Bukh Law Firm, PLLC has represented many clients accused of involvement in all different kinds of insurance fraud scams. Our New York criminal defense lawyers will fight for your rights, help you try to secure a not guilty verdict or bring our experience to the table to assist in negotiating the most favorable plea deal possible. Call today to schedule a consultation and learn more about what you can do when an accusation of jewelry insurance fraud is threatening your future.
What is Jewelry Insurance Fraud?
Jewelry insurance fraud usually takes the form of staging a fake theft of watches, rings, necklaces, and other items that are covered by an insurance policy. Those involved in the fraud scheme may claim someone broke into a home or a vehicle and took jewelry, or that the jewelry was taken in a mugging and armed robbery.
The jewelry covered by the insurer may, in some cases, not have actually existed. Philly.com reported on one case in Pennsylvania where a woman provided receipts for jewelry from a jewelry store that and not yet opened for business. She also claimed that a ring had been purchased by her boyfriend during the time the man was incarcerated.
In other situations, the jewelry may exist but the claimed robbery may not actually occur. The jewelry may be kept hidden until the insurance claim is paid, or the jewelry may be pawned or sold and then the covered owner will claim the losses from the insurer. Arkady Bukh has a long track record of representing clients accused of serious federal and state crimes in NYC TOP RATED ON:
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Top Rated Criminal Lawyer
Arkady Bukh has a long track record of representing clients accused of serious federal and state crimes in NYC
TOP RATED ON: SUPER LAWYERS, AVVO, NATIONAL TRIAL LAWYERS
Penalties for Jewelry Insurance Fraud
Jewelry insurance fraud can carry serious penalties. New York law makes it a felony offense under Penal Code Article 176 to engage in insurance fraud when more than $1,000 is at stake. Making false claims for under $1,000 is a misdemeanor. There are five different degrees of insurance fraud under NY law, with charges and penalties becoming progressively more serious when higher dollar amounts are at stake.
A jewelry insurance fraud claim is often going to require police reports to show that a theft or robbery occurred. NY Penal Law Article 240 makes filing a false police report a crime. Depending upon whether you have a past record, you could be charged with first, second, or third degree offenses for falsely reporting an incident if you claim a robbery or theft happened that never actually occurred.
Under the laws of NY, it does not matter if the insurance fraud is successful and the insurance company actually pays out or not. If you simply attempt to improperly obtain funds by making a false claim under your jewelry insurance, you can be convicted of jewelry insurance fraud. Anyone involved in the scheme, from a person who hides the jewelry to someone who pretends to be a theft and steals the jewelry, can be charged with all criminal acts involved in the scam.
Contact a NY Jewelry Insurance Fraud Attorney
At Bukh Law Firm, PLLC, our New York insurance fraud lawyers can help you fight charges of filing a false report, as well as fraud and theft charges. We know that there are many situations in which prosecutors can’t prove their case successfully and those accused of fraud are able to avoid conviction. We will work hard to help you undermine a case against you, keep evidence out of court if it was obtained improperly, or negotiate a plea deal so you can minimize penalties you face. To learn more about how we can help, call our NY defense firm as soon as possible if you’ve been accused of fraud.