Kentucky Credit and Debit Card Fraud

Credit and debit card fraud are both forms of identity theft in which an unauthorized party makes misrepresentations in order to illegally use a credit or debit card to make purchases or to steal funds.

What's a Credit Card?

In Kentucky, a credit card is defined as any instrument issued by a business or financial institution that allows the cardholder to obtain money, goods, services, or anything else of value on credit. Examples include: credit cards, credit plates, and credit numbers.

What's a Debit Card?

A debit card is any instrument issued (with or without a fee) by a business or financial institution that allows the cardholder to obtain money, goods, services, or anything else of value by paying from funds previously deposited by the cardholder.

Credit and Debit Card Fraud in Kentucky

Credit and debit card fraud in Kentucky is criminalized by the Credit and Debit Card Crime Act (KRS sections 434.550 – 434.730). This act can be broken down into three types of crimes: crimes by the cardholder, merchant crimes, and third-party crimes. See the three charts below for a brief overview of the types of credit and debit card fraud that it prohibits for each group of people.

Crimes by the Cardholder:

Fraudulent Card Applications

Intentionally making false statements about your identity or financial condition in order to procure a card from an issuer.

Fraudulently Reporting a Card Lost or Stolen

Fraudulently using a card that you previously reported as lost or stolen. Or reporting your card lost or stolen and fraudulently stating that transactions you made weren't authorized when in fact they were.

Merchant Crimes:

Misrepresenting that Goods or Services were Provided

When a business (or their employee) intentionally represents that money, goods, services or anything else of value was provided to a cardholder when it wasn't.

Third-party Crimes:

Stealing or Receiving Stolen Cards

Taking a card from another without the consent of the cardholder or the issuer, or receiving a stolen card with the intent to sell or improperly transfer it to someone else.

Fraudulently Buying or Selling a Card

Buying a card from someone other than the issuer, or selling a card if you aren't the issuer.

Using a Card as Security for Debt

Obtaining control over a card as security for debt with the intent to defraud.

Making Fake Cards

Falsely making or embossing a knockoff card with the intent to defraud, or knowingly possessing a fake credit card.

Unauthorized Signature

Signing for a card without the cardholder's authorization and with the intent to defraud.

Phishing

Intentionally soliciting, requesting, or taking action to induce someone to provide their card information electronically by misidentifying yourself.

Additional Resources

State laws change frequently. For case specific information regarding Kentucky's credit and debit card fraud contact either a local consumer protection attorney or a criminal defense lawyer.

Next Steps: Search for a Local Attorney

Contact a qualified attorney.