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What does a Forgery Attorney do?

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  • Written By: N. Madison
  • Edited By: Jenn Walker
  • Last Modified Date: 11 November 2016
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A forgery attorney typically handles cases regarding forged signatures on a range of documents. This type of attorney also handles cases in which documents are created for the intent of committing fraud or deceiving another person, organization, or business. In addition, this type of lawyer may also handle cases in which his client did not create or sign the forged documents but was found in possession of them instead. When a person has been charged with forgery, his lawyer's job is usually to defend him in court and prevent him from facing penalties, such as jail time and fines. When this is not possible, a forgery attorney may instead attempt to secure the lightest penalties possible for his client.

Interestingly, there are many types of cases a forgery attorney may handle. Many people are most familiar with cases in which an individual forges another's signature. This may occur with signing contracts, credit card slips, or even checks. Another type of forgery involves the creation of documents with the intent to deceive another, even if the signatures on the documents are legitimate. A forgery lawyer may also handle cases in which paper money is forged or even those involving the forgery of designer merchandise and artwork.

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In many places, forgery is considered a felony. A felony is a serious type of crime for which a person is often punished with time in prison and a permanent criminal record. The primary responsibility of a forgery attorney may be to convince a judge or a jury that his client is innocent. He may attempt to do this by providing proof that his client was not involved in the forgery at all. In some cases, however, this type of lawyer may attempt to show that his client did see, handle, or use the forged item but was unaware that he was committing forgery.

Sometimes a forgery attorney will also attempt to convince the court that his client believed he had a legal right to sign another person’s name. In many jurisdiction, this belief may be enough to free the defendant of a forgery charge. For example, if party A gives party B permission to sign documents for him and later changes his mind, party B may not be held accountable for forgery if party A never informed him of the revoked permission.

A forgery attorney may sometimes use intoxication as a defense for his client as well. For example, if a client participated in a forgery while he was drunk, this may be an adequate defense in some places. Depending on the jurisdiction, this may not mean the party is completely innocent, but the defense may be used to show that he did not realize he was committing a crime at the time or was not in control of himself.

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Vincenzo
Post 2

@Soulfox -- It is true that forgery has become a problem with digital signatures, but that problem should be resolved when lawmakers and such get their heads around the technology and make it fairly forgery proof.

Of course, that doesn't mean that forgery attorneys will fall out of vogue. There will always be something for them to do as people will (apparently) always forge documents whether they are paper, digital or something else.

Soulfox
Post 1

Since electronic signatures have been increasingly accepted, there are a lot of career opportunities for forgery attorneys. I have seen more than one "electronically signed" document that was a complete and total forgery. Heck, there's not even a signature to examine to prove the name was forged.

In that environment, I would guess that forgeries are more common and those cases are more complex. A sharp lawyer could clean up by working on forgery cases.

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