Los Angeles Prescription Fraud Lawyers
Given the ongoing opioid crisis in America, prescription fraud has become a major concern for law enforcement across the country. These types of charges are being pursued more aggressively than ever before, so it’s important that those who stand accused retain the services of an experienced defense attorney in order to obtain the best possible result for their case. Because prescription fraud case convictions have such serious ramifications, it is imperative that those accused contact an attorney as soon as possible.
If you or a loved one has been charged with any kind of prescription fraud, you must take the necessary steps to safeguard your future. The knowledgeable Los Angeles white collar crime defense attorneys at Werksman Jackson & Quinn LLP can help you fight the charges you’re facing, possibly even getting those charges reduced or even dismissed. The right attorney makes all the difference in a criminal defense case.
But you need to act now – contact Werksman Jackson & Quinn LLP today at (213) 688-0460 and tell us about your case.
There are several major types of prescription fraud, depending on who is charged with committing the crime. This comes down to either a patient or doctor accused of fraud.
- Doctor Shopping – This is prescription fraud charged against a patient. In this situation, it is claimed that a patient conceals information or uses deceit to get a prescription for a controlled substance from a doctor.
- Illegal Prescriptions – These are prescriptions for controlled substances, written by medical professionals such as general practitioners or dentists, which are not issued for legitimate medical reasons.
Altering or forging prescriptions is also a form of fraud, but has its own laws covering it in terms of how it is charged and penalized.
Prescription fraud in California is a “wobbler,” which means it can be charged as either a misdemeanor or a felony. This is typically at the prosecution’s discretion and often depends on the specific nature and details of each case. As the opioid crisis has become a greater concern, prescription fraud has been charged more aggressively, particularly against doctors – since many people view doctor over-prescription as a major contributing factor in the crisis.
One approach an experienced prescription fraud defense attorney can take it to fight for the lesser charge – getting the incident charged as a misdemeanor rather than a felony. Penalties for each type include:
- Misdemeanor Prescription Fraud – Punishable by up to 1 year in county jail, a fine of up to $1,000, or both.
- Felony Prescription Fraud – Punishable by up to 16 months, 2 years, or 3 years in county jail, a fine of up to $20,000, or both.
A doctor charged with, or convicted of, prescription fraud can also face professional censure including the loss of medical license. While charges may be enough to begin an investigation by the Medical Board of California, conviction will weigh heavily in such an investigation and make license suspension very likely.
For prescription fraud to occur, it must be proven that a patient used deception or similar methods to obtain a prescription. If it can be shown that there was no deceit or fraud involved, such as if a doctor made a prescription error, then that can defend against a fraud charge. Similarly, a doctor must be shown to have knowingly written a prescription for purposes other than legitimate medical reasons. A strong defense against such a charge includes showing that the prescription was written in good faith and for proper medical reasons.
Prescription fraud can be a serious charge, especially when charged as a felony. Do not leave things up to chance or hope a public defender has the time to really focus on your case. Call us at (213) 688-0460 and let Werksman Jackson & Quinn LLP fight for you.
Recent Case Results
- Complete Dismissal of Molestation Charges
Attorney Mark Werksman’s 29 year old client was falsely accused of molesting two neighborhood children and was subsequently charged with felony child molestation, with a significant prison sentence hanging over his head should he be convicted. Instead, at the preliminary hearing Werksman was able to convince the court to grant his client a complete dismissal of any charges.
- Decision Set Aside
Client, a college student in a faulty Title IX case, was awarded $130,000 in attorney fees.
- Probation with No Jail Time for Drug Money Laundering Charge
Wilmington man accused in New York federal court of laundering drug money through the sale of laptop computers. Mark was able to get the case transferred to federal court in Los Angeles, where he convinced the United States Attorney to reduce the charges. His client was sentenced to probation with no jail time on a misdemeanor conviction.