Miami PPP & EIDL Fraud Lawyers
Defense Attorneys for EIDL & PPP Fraud Accusations
The effects of a natural disaster can be devastating to a small business. The government has programs to help, notably Economic Injury Disaster Loans (EIDL).
Violating regulations associated with these loans can bring down serious consequences, from heavy fines to long prison sentences.
Get the legal help you need by calling (305) 330-3905 or reaching out to us online. We offer free consultations and payment plans.
How EIDL Works
To become eligible for an EIDL, a business must have suffered “substantial economic injury.” The federal government defines that to mean the business can no longer meet its obligations to sustain ordinary operating expenses because of the conditions incurred from the natural disaster. It is further required that the business has been unable to get the necessary credit from a private lending institution. The maximum loan amount is $2 million.
The arrival of the COVID-19 pandemic led to the passage of the Paycheck Protection Act (PPP). The way the PPP delivered relief to small businesses was by expanding the use of EIDL loans. Even though PPP officially terminated in the spring of 2021, federal investigators can still bring charges of fraud.
There are restrictions on what EIDL monies can be used for. It’s expected that the money will go to sustaining normal operations, making debt payments, and keeping up payroll.
Even with the restrictions, these loans come with attractive interest rates — no higher than 4% — and repayment terms that are based on the borrower’s ability to do so.
When the government believes that a borrower has obtained the funds under false pretenses, EIDL fraud charges can be brought.
What Are the Penalties for EIDL Fraud?
Defrauding the Small Business Administration (SBA) can be considered bank fraud, wire fraud, mail fraud, or identity theft, depending on the means the government believes was used to commit the alleged fraud. All these crimes come with the potential for penalties of 30 years in prison and a fine of up to $1 million.
The Law Offices of Paul D. Petruzzi P.A. understands the best strategies to fight charges made by federal prosecutors, and we know how to protect our clients’ best interests, their freedom, and their reputation.
Call (305) 330-3905 or contact us online to set up a free consultation.
Defenses Against EIDL Fraud
Like all criminal cases, the defendant is presumed innocent. That means a federal prosecutor must prove beyond a reasonable doubt that the defendant is guilty. That’s a high bar of certainty, and the prosecutor must further get unanimity from a 12-person jury.
Furthermore, the defendants in EIDL fraud cases have another advantage — it must be proven that they knowingly sought to defraud the SBA. Mistakes are a valid defense. In an area where financial calculations are often complex, this is no small advantage for the defendant, and a lawyer can leverage this to maximum effect with the jury.
The Fourth Amendment is another avenue of defense. Federal investigators will likely need subpoenas and search warrants to get the information they need to mount a viable prosecution. Subpoenas and search warrants require probable cause. A Miami PPP and EIDL fraud attorney can explore whether probable cause existed, and if it did not, challenge the validity of any evidence gathered.
"If you are in need of a criminal lawyer in the Miami area, he and his team should be the first people to consult."Petra G.
"Mr. Petruzzi helped a family member and couldn't give him a better recommendation for the hard work and dedication he put into his case."Sam L.
"Attentive, professional, compassionate and the best legal defense anyone could ask for."Lisette E.