What are the penalties for mortgage fraud in New Jersey?


If you want to buy a home but do not have enough money to pay the full cost out of pocket, you can apply for a mortgage. During the mortgage process, both the borrower and the lender must provide accurate information to each other. When an industry professional or individual borrower intentionally lies or omits critical information to secure housing or make a profit it is considered mortgage fraud. Mortgage fraud is a serious white-collar crime that carries significant penalties. If convicted, you will likely be subject to an array of harsh penalties including hefty fines, probation, restitution, and jail time. If you have recently been charged with mortgage fraud, you need a skilled Middlesex County, New Jersey Criminal Defense Lawyer on your side. Keep reading to learn about the potential penalties for mortgage fraud in New Jersey and discover how our firm can help you today. 

What is mortgage fraud?

According to the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI), mortgage fraud is defined as any “material misstatement, misrepresentation, or omission relating to the property or potential mortgage relied on by an underwriter or lender to fund, purchase, or insure a loan.” Oftentimes, people neglect to understand that this criminal offense can be committed by both individual borrowers and lenders. Essentially, this type of fraud occurs when someone intentionally lies or omits critical information during the mortgage application process. This offense usually involves fraud for profit or fraud for housing. Industry professionals usually commit fraud for profit. Fraud for profit cheats mortgage seekers out of money and equity from lenders. Unlike fraud for profit, fraud for housing unlawfully secures housing. This type of fraud is commonly committed by borrowers who misrepresent their income or intentionally omit critical information on a loan application to manipulate the appraised value of a property. If you commit this type of fraud depending on the specific circumstances of the offense, you could face state and federal-level penalties.

What are the potential penalties in New Jersey?

In a fraud scheme, if you unlawfully take more than $1,000 from a party, it will be classified as a misdemeanor offense. Misdemeanor fraud is punishable by up to a year in prison and a hefty fine. If you take more than $1,000 in a fraud scheme, it will be classified as a felony offense which is punishable by up to a decade of imprisonment and a fine of over $100,000. However, federal mortgage convictions are punished by up to 30 years in jail and/or a $1 million fine. Additionally, the courts will likely require you to pay restitution to injured parties. Federal mortgage fraud occurs when fraud schemes cross state lines.

If you have been charged with mortgage fraud in New Jersey, please contact one of our determined and adept team members. Our firm is prepared to aggressively fight on your behalf to achieve favorable results and prevent harsh penalties.



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