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Houston Fraud Lawyers

Serving as a leader at your company grants you access to a great deal of information. However, individuals who misuse or misrepresent that information risk committing fraud. Fraud comes in many different forms regulated by different government agencies, but any form of fraud is a serious charge that can carry hefty penalties.

If an agency or individual is able to prove that you have committed an act of fraud, you could be forced to pay huge sums of money or even spend time in prison. It is important to defend against these allegations as soon as they arise. Whether you are accused of defrauding the government, an individual, or a group of individuals, Williams Hart can help build your case and increase your chances of success in and out of court.

Types of Fraud

Fraud is a general term for the misuse or misrepresentation of company information, but any concrete accusations of fraud will be of a more specific type. These represent different kinds of conduct regulated by different government agencies, but they can all land you in a mountain of legal problems. Here are the most common types of corporate fraud:

  • Securities fraud is the act of misrepresenting financial information to shareholders or potential shareholders. For instance, an executive might lie about profits and losses over the last quarter in order to convince shareholders to stay or to convince new investors to buy shares. The Texas State Securities Board (SSB) regulates this type of fraud at the state level; the Securities & Exchange Commission (SEC) regulates at the federal level. Securities fraud charges can come with millions of dollars in criminal penalties and up to 20 years in prison. Furthermore, people who have already been convicted of securities fraud in a criminal case can be sued in a civil case for money that shareholders lost.
  • Tax fraud is the act of misrepresenting financial information when filing your taxes in order to pay a lower tax rate. This type of fraud can range from inflating expenses to hiding profits. The Internal Revenue Service (IRS) regulates this type of fraud at the federal level and the Texas State Auditor’s Office regulates at the state level. The IRS may seek to audit your company if they suspect you of tax fraud.
    Whether you are accused of securities fraud or tax fraud, it is critical that you start building your case as soon as possible in order to avoid the hefty penalties that can come with a conviction.

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Fighting accusations of fraud is a time-sensitive process. The government offices regulating fraud often act at a somewhat deliberate pace, and you may be under investigation for some time before you are ever charged with any crime. Once officials threaten you with investigation, you can seize this window and perhaps even settle the matter before they file charges. The corporate lawyers at Williams Hart have experience defending clients in Houston against fraud accusations, and we want to help you hit the ground running. We will work tirelessly in or out of court to build your case and increase your chances of success. If you have been accused of fraud, call the Houston fraud lawyers of Williams Hart at (713) 230-2200 today.

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