New York Penal Law § 187.15: Residential mortgage fraud in the third degree

Residential mortgage fraud is a white collar crime that involves securing a mortgage for residential property by making false statements on the mortgage loan application. Like grand larceny residential mortgage fraud is a type of theft. For purposes of the residential mortgage fraud statute, "residential real property," refers to real estate that has been improved by a 1 to 4 family dwelling. If you take out a mortgage on unimproved land on which you intend to build a residence, that property would not be considered residential real property. There are 5 offenses related to residential mortgage fraud: residential mortgage fraud in the first, second, third, fourth and fifth degrees. The specific residential mortgage fraud crime that you will face depends on the amount of money received as a result of the fraud. Under New York Penal Law § 187.15, you could be charged with residential mortgage fraud in the third degree if you commit residential mortgage fraud and the amount involved is more than $3000 and not more than $50,000.

Example

Beth did not have the required income to qualify for the $45,000 mortgage she needed to buy a small home that she wanted to use as rental property. So she lied about her income and produced false supporting documentation. She was approved for the mortgage and was able to buy the property. She quickly rented the property to friends. After about a year, Beth defaulted on the loan. The bank discovered Beth's fraud and contacted the authorities. Beth could be prosecuted for residential mortgage fraud in the third degree because of the false statements she made regarding her income and because she was not living in the property.

Related Offenses
  1. Residential mortgage fraud in the fifth degree: New York Penal Law § 187.05
  2. Residential mortgage fraud in the fourth degree: New York Penal Law § 187.10
  3. Residential mortgage fraud in the second degree: New York Penal Law § 187.20
  4. Residential mortgage fraud in the first degree: New York Penal Law § 187.25
Defenses

In order to prosecute you for residential mortgage fraud in the third degree the prosecutor must prove that the false statement you made was related to a material fact, that you made the false statement "knowingly" and that you had the intent to defraud. If the prosecutor is unable to prove any of these elements, then he or she will have a tough time securing a conviction. Furthermore, the prosecutor must prove that the amount of money involved was over $3000. Additionally, if you are an applicant for a residential mortgage loan or you intend to live in the residence that the mortgage is to secure, you cannot be prosecuted for residential mortgage fraud.

Sentence

Residential mortgage fraud in the third degree is a class D felony. If you are convicted of this offense you could be sent to prison for up to 7 years. You could also receive a probation sentence of up to 5 years and be required to pay a substantial fine.

New York Penal Law § 185.15: Residential mortgage fraud in the third degree

A person is guilty of residential mortgage fraud in the third degree when he or she commits residential mortgage fraud and thereby receives proceeds or any other funds in the aggregate in excess of three thousand dollars.

Contact the Law Offices of Stephen Bilkis & Associates

If you have been charged with residential mortgage fraud, it is important to immediately speak with an experienced New York residential mortgage fraud attorney. The staff at the Law Offices of Stephen Bilkis & Associates has years of experience successfully defending clients in New York criminal courts who have been charged with fraud, grand larceny, white collar crimes, and other serious crimes. Contact us at 1-800-NY-NY-LAW (1-800-696-9529) to schedule a free, no obligation consultation regarding your case. We serve those accused of larceny in the following locations: the Bronx, Brooklyn, Long Island, Manhattan, Nassau County, Queens, Staten Island, Suffolk County and Westchester County.

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