As a capitalist country, the United States often seems to value success over honesty. Many people will attempt to get ahead in business by engaging in what they may consider to be rule-bending practices that are federal or felony offenses.
Professionals in a wide range of industries, from the medical field to financial services, could find themselves facing serious accusations of fraud that seem to come out of nowhere. It is only through the discovery process and reviewing the state documentation for the case that you will learn how long the investigation has taken.
Many fraud cases require months if not years of evidence gathering before anyone faces charges. Even if you feel like you have been blindsided by the charges, you need to prepare yourself to take action.
Financial fraud comes in many forms
If you think that you have found a way to game the system and make money, there is always the potential that the activity you engage in could be criminal. For example, you may not think of it as insider trading if you only discuss business and financial decisions with a handful of people you explicitly trust. However, using information you have access to through your professional contacts for personal gain could result in allegations of fraud.
Plenty of people who are just trying to provide a service to others in the financial industry could also find themselves charged with fraud. Mortgage brokers and other financial professionals involved in the sale or refinancing of real estate could do things to benefit their customers that violate the law.
Encouraging people to misrepresent their assets or income, or intentionally misrepresenting the value of a property to push it through for a higher mortgage amount could easily result in criminal charges. While you may not directly profit from it, you receive indirect benefit by the increased amount of mortgages you write or the increased value of the mortgages that go through.
Medical fraud is also a very real risk
Whether you work as a billing specialist, a practice manager or a physician, the potential exists for you to eventually face fraud allegations related to how you bill your patients. Some people, for example, will unbundle services and charge for them individually to maximize how much an insurance company pays. However, that practice is a form of fraud.
So, too, is upgrading the procedure when billing. Billing for a more expensive or invasive procedure than the one the patient received is a common form of medical fraud. Many people don’t stop to think about the fact that there are victims to these schemes, as they view the money is coming from either the government or a faceless corporation.
Regardless of what profession you work in, if you find yourself facing allegations of fraud, you need to be proactive in how you respond to the pending charge.