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Welfare Fraud

Key Penal Law Provisions:
  • Welfare fraud in the fifth degree, PL 158.05, a class A misdemeanor
  • Welfare fraud in the fourth degree, PL 158.10, a class E felony
  • Welfare fraud in the third degree, P.L 158.15, a class D felony
  • Welfare fraud in the second degree (158.20, a class C felony
  • Welfare fraud in the first degree, 158.25, a class B felony

There are five degrees of welfare fraud crime in New York, and they are distinguished based upon the amount of public assistance benefits stolen from the government. Fifth-degree welfare fraud – a class A misdemeanor – applies to those that defraud local, state or federal assistance programs of any amount of money, whereas first-degree welfare fraud involves a million dollars or more over a period of time. The fraud can be accomplished by knowingly proffering false information in program paperwork or applications or by pretending to be somebody else (or somebody fictitious). Typically, defendants charged with this crime are forced to plead guilty to a lesser-included offense and pay restitution equal to the amount of money they took. However, some egregious offenders are also forced to serve probation or prison sentences for their actions.

Client Reviews
Mr. Galluzzo and his team at The Law Office of Matthew Galluzzo are absolutely one of the best at what they do. The work tirelessly at getting the best possible result for the case at hand and they truly care about their clients. Galluzzo and his team were able to overturn and vacate my guilty plea, then taking a big risk where I could have faced a large amount of time in prison Galluzzo took my case to trial. He walked in there with the confidence and swagger as if he already knew everything would work out for me, he laid out every single fact and hole in the prosecutions case to the jury and came away with a full acquittal on every charge after just one hour of deliberations. In an instant, I had my life back! I would most certainly recommend Matthew and his team to anyone in need of legal help. Thanks again Matt! Client
I want to thank you again for all the energy that you expended on behalf of our children during the weekend – your presence by their sides reassured them throughout this traumatic experience and reduced their suffering. Client
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