If you have been arrested for shoplifting, it can be a major crime depending on whether it is a misdemeanor or a felony you are being charged with. More often than not, this will depend on how much the stolen item is worth. The most common types of retail fraud consist of (1) stealing, (2) shoplifting, (3) price fixing, and (4) changing price tags.
Here are the item property values and the charges effective in the state of Michigan under the Michigan Retail Fraud Law:
|Value of Item or Money Stolen||Retail Fraud Charges to Apply|
|- Less than $200.00||- You will be charged with a misdemeanor.- This is called “third degree” retail fraud.- Penalty: maximum of 93 days jail time, AND/OR maximum fine of $500.00 or three times the value of stolen property (whichever is more)|
|- Over $200.00, but less than $1,000.00||- You will be charged with a misdemeanor.- This is called “second degree” retail fraud.- Penalty: maximum of 1 year jail time, AND/OR maximum fine of $2,000.00 or three times the value of stolen property (whichever is greater)|
|- Over $1,000.00, but less than $20,000.00||- You will be charged with a felony.- This is called “first degree” retail fraud.- Penalty: maximum of 5 years jail time, AND/OR maximum fine of not more than $10,000.00 or three times the value of stolen property (whichever is more)|
|- Over $20,000.00||- You will be charged with a felony.- Penalty: maximum of 5 years jail time, AND/OR maximum fine of not more than $15,000.00 or three times the value of stolen property (whichever is more)|
Under the Michigan Retail Fraud law, however, for an offense to be deemed as 1st degree retail fraud, at least one of the following conditions must be satisfied:
- An item is removed and replaced, transferred, or altered by the offender, with the intent not to pay for the item or pay for it at a price lower than that at which it is offered for sale, or he has otherwise misrepresented the price value at which the item is being offered for sale. Note that this must have happened while the store is open to the public, and the resulting difference in price is greater than or equal to $1,000.00.
- The offender steals from a store any item being offered for sale worth $1,000.00 or more, while the store is open to the public.
- The offender obtains, or tries to obtain any item or money from a store (with the intent to defraud) as an exchange or as a refund for an item that was not paid for AND belongs to the store, if the value of the item or money obtained or tried to be obtained is greater than or equal to $1,000.00
For second degree retail fraud, the same conditions apply only that instead of $1,000.00, the value would be at least $200.00, but less than $1,000.00. The same thing goes for third degree retail fraud, only that the value is any amount less than $200.00.
Under the Michigan Retail Fraud law, retail fraud requires evidence that the offender took the item or money intentionally, that is, with the intent to steal, and not accidentally.
It is important to note, however, that the store owner or a store employee cannot accuse the suspect out loud in front of other people. During questioning, he must not be rude and foul language must not be used. This is because if the suspect was proven innocent, he can charge the owner with causing emotional distress and defamation. Also, the store owner may choose to seek civil remedies from the parents or guardians of the offender if the offender is a minor, in lieu of criminal examination.
Need a Michigan Retail Fraud and Shoplifting Lawyer? For more information about the Michigan Retail Fraud laws and call us at (248) 398-7100 for a free consultation or contact us with a private message.
Examples of Retail Stores Our Firm Typically Deals With:
Kohls, GM Renaissance Center, Laurel Park Place, Southland Center, Oakland Mall, twelve oaks mall, Partiage Creek, Great Lakes Crossing, Somerset Collection, Lakeside Mall, abercrombie, Abercrombie & Fitch, aerie, Aéropostale, ALDO,American Eagle Outfitters, Bath & Body Works, bebe, Body Shop, The, Brookstone, Buckle, Caché, Champs Sports, Charlotte Russe, Christopher & Banks, Claire’s, Disney Store, Express, f.y.e., Finish Line, Foot Locker, Forever 21, GNC, GUESS, Gymboree, H&M, Helzberg Diamonds, Hollister Co., Hot Topic, Ice Age, Icing, J.B. Robinson Jewelers, JCPenney, Johnston & Murphy, Journeys, Justice, Kay Jewelers, Lady Foot Locker, Leather City, LensCrafters, Lids, Limited, The, Lord & Taylor, Macy’s, Men’s Wearhouse,Merle Norman,Motherhood Maternity, Naturalizer Shoes, New York & Company, PacSun, Payless ShoeSource, Perfumania, Prestige Jewelers, Ritz Camera, rue21,Sears, SoHo, Spencer’s, stride rite, Sunglass Hut, Tapper’s Gold Exchange, Teavana, Things Remembered, Torrid, Toys”R”Us,Trade Secret, Underground Station, Vanity, Victoria’s Secret, Vitamin World, Wet Seal, Windsor, Yankee Candle, Zales Jewelers, Zumiez, Allen Edmonds, Ann Taylor, Anthropologie, Apple, Arden B., AX Armani Exchange, babyGap, Bachrach, Banana Republic, Bare Escentuals, BCBG Max Azria, bebe, Betsey Johnson, Brighton Collectibles, Brooks Brothers, Brookstone, Build-A-Bear Workshop, Burberry, Cache, Coach, Cole Haan, Crate & Barrel, Crocs, EB Games, Eddie Bauer, Meijer, Whole Foods, Trader Joes’, Express/Expressmen, Foot Locker, For Love 21, Fossil, Franklin Covey, Free People, Gap,GapKids, Gucci, Guess, J. Crew/crewcuts , Janie and Jack, Johnston & Murphy, Juicy Couture, kate spade new york, L’Occitane, Lacoste, Lego, Levi’s Store, Lilly Pulitzer, LOFT, Louis Vuitton, Lucky Brand Jeans, lululemonathletica, Lush, M.A.C., Madewell, Marmi, MaxAzria, MaxMara, Michael Kors, Montblanc, Needle & Thread, Neiman Marcus, Nine West, Nordstrom, OMEGA, Origins, Pacific Sunwear, Pandora, Papyrus, Paradise Pen Company, Pottery Barn, Pottery Barn Kids, Ralph Lauren, Restoration Hardware, Saks Fifth Avenue, SEE Eyewear, Sephora, Soma Intimates, Somerset Collection, St. Croix, Steve Madden, Stride Rite, Stuart Weitzman, Swarovski, Talbots | Talbots Petites,Wal-Mart, CostCo, GolfSmith, REi, PetCo, PetsMart, Kmart, Mc Sporting Goods, Sam’s Club, The Art of Shaving, The Body Shop, The Detroit Shoppe, The Limited, The North Face, The Walking Company, Tiffany & Co., Tommy Bahama, Tory Burch, Tourneau, True Religion Brand Jeans, Tumi, Vera Bradley, Victoria’s Secret, White House/Black Market, Williams-Sonoma, Wolford, OfficeMax, Office Depot, Barnes & Noble, Old Navy, TJmaxs, Marshalls, Tanager Outlet Mall, Home Goods, staples, Bed bath and beyond, Walmart, DSW, Ulta, Family Christian Stores, GameStop, ABC warehouse, RadioShack, Pier One, Dick’s Sporting Goods, Jo Ann Fabrics, Michaels, Target, Dots, universal mall, northland mall, Biglots, CVS, RiteAid, Walgreens, Fairlane Mall, Fountain Walk mall, Southland Center, Value City furniture, Art van Furniture, Hobby Lobby, Best Buy, Burlington Coat Factory, IKEA, Summit Palace Mall, Home Depot, Lowes,