The Phoenix criminal defense attorneys at MayesTelles PLLC represent individuals facing all types of offenses, from misdemeanors to multiple felony counts. In this case, it was the latter. Our client (we’ll call her “Ms. F”) was charged with:
- Theft, a class 4 felony
- Fraud Schemes, a class 5 felony
- 14 counts of False Statements to Obtain Benefits, class 6 felony
In other words, our client was facing 16 fraud-related felony offenses and we were able to get this reduced to just one misdemeanor offense, and the conviction for that offense was set aside at sentencing.
False Statements to Obtain Benefits: ARS 23-785
Out of these three offenses, let’s focus on False Statements to Obtain Benefits, an offense that is outlined in 23-785 of the Arizona Revised Statutes.
Any person who knowingly makes a false statement or representation believing it to be false or who knowingly fails to disclose a material fact in order to obtain or increase a benefit or other payment under this chapter either for himself or for another person, or under an employment security law of another state, the federal government or a foreign government, is guilty of a class 6 felony. Each such false statement or representation or failure to disclose a material fact shall constitute a separate offense.
This chapter concerns unemployment benefits. An individual is only eligible for unemployment benefits in Arizona if they meet criteria such as:
- The person has registered for work at an employment office
- The person has made a claim for unemployment benefits in Arizona
- The person is able to work
- The person has shown a sustained effort to find a job at least 4 days per week AND they have contacted employers regarding work at least 3 times per week.
- The person has been unemployed for at least a week, and more. See ARS 23-771 for additional criteria.
Article 6, Chapter 3 of the Arizona Revised Statutes contains additional information about employment benefits, such as factors that warrant disqualification, required documentation, payment of benefits, amount of benefits, and more. This is a class 6 felony under Arizona law, and our client was faced with 14 counts of this class 6 felony, not to mention the two other felony offenses.
We thrive when the odds appear to be stacked against us. If you or someone you love is facing serious charges such as the ones mentioned in this case, we have the experience and strength you need. Contact us today for a free case review to learn your legal rights and options.
*Please note, results depend upon factors unique to each case and that results in one case do not predict similar results in others.