The California Identity Theft Laws is less severe than the law in other states and the federal laws as regards the same issue.
California Identity Theft Laws
The law of several states as regards the crimes associated with identity theft are considered to be felonies, and the lesser crimes are regarded as misdemeanors.
Unlike other states, the laws or California concerning Identify theft is considered to be misdemeanors, with the severity of the crimes depending on the circumstances of Identity theft. However, if the charge is severe, the crime will be considered to be a felony.
Identity Theft refers to the practice of acquiring the personal identifying information of another person in order to use it for unlawful or fraudulent purposes.
The personal identifying information of individuals include:
- The full name of the victim
- Phone number
- Passport number
- Taxpayer identification number
- Social security number
- Voiceprint and a host of other information.
Under the law of the state of California, there are four different types of identity theft
- Acquiring the personal information of other individuals without their consent and making use of it without their consent for a fraudulent or unlawful purpose.
- The sale or transfer of the personal identifying information of other people without their authorization, with the knowledge that the information will be used for fraudulent or unlawful acts.
- The sale or transfer of the personal identifying information of other people without their authorization with the intent of committing fraud.
- Acquiring and using the information of other people to commit fraud without their consent.
Possessing the personal identifying information of another person is not always an indication of identity theft. It is regarded as an identity theft when the perpetrator used the identifying information’ for:
- a fraudulent intent
- unlawful practices
This refers to the false impersonation of other people with the intent of receiving property, money, a line of credit, goods, services, employment among a host of other benefits. This action is usually punished with both jail time and fines to the state.
Impersonation for the Purpose of Marriage
The law of the state of California provides that no individual in the state shall impersonate another individual so as to get married.
Any individual that provides false information concerning their identity, for the purpose of acquiring a marriage license and take part in a marriage ceremony under false identification is guilty of committing a felony.
Manufacturing and Selling of Records
The practice of either purchasing, selling, producing or acquiring in any way the personal identifying information of another person, especially a birth certificate is considered to be a crime under the law of the state of California.
Possessing the identifying information of another person such as the birth certificate, baptismal record and other record information concerning birth, be it of a moving or deceased person, is considered to be a misdemeanor crime.
Thus refers to the practice of assisting other people with acquiring the records of other people such as birth certificates and government-issued IDs of other people without their authorization. This practice is considered to be a crime.
The law of the state of California imposes certain penalties and sentences on identity theft crimes, irrespective of how this information was utilized. The actual sentence however often depends on the circumstances surrounding the crime and the severity of the harm inflicted on the victim.
The state of California makes the following penalties available for this crime.
- A fine up to $1,000
- A jail term of up to a year.
- Both the fine and the jail term
- An increase in the sentence of the perpetrator, based on his or her previous criminal records and other circumstances as dictated by the law.