Salt Lake Criminal Defense Attorney Utah
Criminal Defense Attorney Stephen Howard
Call Criminal Defense Attorney in Utah
Call Utah Criminal Lawyer
Experienced Criminal Defense Attorneys / Former Prosecutors
Call 801-449-1409 now for help protecting your rights.
Utah Criminal Defense Lawyer Salt Lake City

Criminal Defense Solutions Start HereSM

Finding a Felony Defense LawyerChoosing a Misdemeanor Defense LawyerDrug and Alcohol Crimes Defense LawyerWhite Collar Defense Attorney for Utah ChargesAttorney for Expungements Reductions and PardonsDefendant Constitutional Rights Criminal LawyerBail and Bond Alternatives in UtahReasons for Hope Facing Criminal Charges

Salt Lake Criminal Defense Lawyer - Utah Forgery Defense Attorney

If you are facing forgery charges in the Salt Lake City area, you need an experienced Salt Lake criminal defense attorney on your side.  Based in Salt Lake City, Stephen Howard has successfully defended thousands of serious felony cases during his career.  A Utah forgery conviction could mean prison time, thousands of dollars, and a felony conviction.  Stephen Howard has the knowledge, skill, and determination to help you get the results you need.  When you are facing forgery or other serious criminal charges, you need more than a sales pitch.  You need straight talk from an experienced Utah criminal defense lawyer with a track record of real results.

Elements of Criminal Forgery in Utah


Under Utah criminal law, the crime of "forgery" is broadly defined to include issuing, transferring, uttering, publishing, and just about anything else you could do with a forged document.  Traditionally, "forgery" involved the creation of fake documents such as identification documents, checks, etc, or the signing of someone else's name.  But under Utah criminal law, a prosecutor is not required to prove that you were in any way involved in creating the forged document or that you signed anything at all.

The most common document involved in Salt Lake forgery cases is a check.  To obtain a guilty verdict in a forgery case, the critical element is often the intent to defraud.  If a prosecutor can convince a jury that the defendant had the intent to defraud someone, the prosecutor does not have to prove that the defendant created the check or even signed the check.  The prosecutor simply has to prove that the defendant tried to cash a fake check.

Unlike theft charges, the level of a forgery charge has nothing to do with the value anything.  Whereas theft of items valued at less than $500 is a class B misdemeanor, a forged check written out in any amount (even five cents) is automatically a third degree felony charge.  Forgery charges for passing bad checks are often accompanied by an additional charge of theft by deception.  While the forgery charge is an automatic felony, the level of a theft by deception charge still depends on the amount of the check.  

Defending Forgery Cases in Salt Lake City, Utah


There are a number of angles from which to approach a forgery defense case.  These are just a few examples of factual issues that need to be addressed:  the document and the sources of the document should be examined to see there are clear indications of forgery; the client should be interviewed to determine whether there is a valid explanation for how the document came to be in his or her possession; police reports should be reviewed to determine whether there is evidence of an intent to defraud; witness statements need to be reviewed to determine if the witnesses can positively identify the client as the person actually involved in the forgery.

If the evidence against the clients appears to be solid, a negotiated resolution may be in the client's best interests.  Although forgery is legally considered a "property" crime, many Salt Lake area prosecutors treat it as a drug crime.  The reason for this is that many people who get caught passing bad checks are doing it to support a drug habit.

If you have found yourself involved in passing forged checks or other criminal charges as a result of a drug habit or addiction, you need an attorney who understands addiction as well as the legal system.  Stephen Howard has extensive experience working with addiction-related issues within the criminal justice system, and he understands how a person's addiction can actually be used to benefit them in negotiating a resolution to a criminal case.

If you are charged with forgery or any other crime in the Salt Lake area, contact us to learn what an experienced criminal defense attorney can do for your case.


Best Rating
Make a Payment to Your Account
Get Help Now
Name: Email: Phone: Describe your legal needs here:
I accept the disclaimer below.
Disclaimer: No attorney-client relationship is established by the use of this form. Confidential or time-sensitive information should not be submitted through this form. By clicking 'submit' I am only requesting that I be contacted for the purpose of obtaining legal services.

This form protected by reCAPTCHA.

  • Selected Victories
  • Criminal Defense Trial AttorneyNot Guilty - Client was charged with aggravated assault for allegedly pointing handgun at and threatening another driver during a road rage incident. Defense investigation and analysis, combined with effective cross-examination at trial indicated the alleged victim was the initial aggressor and suported client's self-defense claim. Jury acquitted client at trial.
  • Minor Possession Alcohol - MIP AttorneyDismissed - Minor in possession charge (MIP) was dismissed by prosecutor when defense analysis demonstrated that the police had failed to obtain necessary evidence against client. Police had raided a large party involving underage drinking. Several individuals were charged, but police did not obtain evidence showing that client had personally consumed or possessed alcohol. Case was dismissed.
  • 402 Reduction Lawyer Utah 2-Step Reduction - Client needed a two-step reduction to bring a prior conviction to the misdemeanor level. Collection of substantial evidence of reform and rehabilitation convinced a normally reluctant prosecutor to stipulate to the defense 402 reduction motion.
  • Utah Burglary Defense Attorney Not Guilty - Client was charged with second-degree felony residential burglary and facing potential prison time. Investigation by the defense revealed multiple witnesses, missed by police and prosecutors, who supported client's claim of innocence. At trial, the jury returned a "not guilty" verdict on all charges.
  • Recent Posts
  • What to Do When Arrested for DUI What should I do if I am arrested for DUI? - Many DUI cases begin as minor traffic stops. But the consequences of a DUI conviction are much more serious than an ordinary traffic citation. If you are pulled over for a suspected DUI, you have specific important constitutional and statutory rights that can protect your. . . .
  • Utah Statewide Warrant Search How do I find out if I have an outstanding warrant? - If you believe you may have an outstanding arrest warrant in Utah, a criminal defense attorney can access the Utah statewide warrant system and help you find the best. . . .
Best Utah Criminal Defense Strategy

Successfully defending against criminal prosecution requires more than just an 'aggressive' defense. The best defense attorneys understand that a sophisticated defense requires a thorough understanding of a variety of nuanced legal issues, real experience in the courtroom, good negotiation skills, and much more. Fighting hard is good. Fighting smart is better....

Strategy »
Salt Lake Criminal Defense Attorney Profile Utah

Finding the right criminal defense lawyer for you Utah criminal case will be one of the most important decision you make. Before hiring any lawyer, there are a number of important factors to consider. The person you select as your criminal defense attorney will be responsible to defend your case and protect your rights....

Experience »
Conviction Consequences - Utah Criminal Defense

Even a "minor" misdemeanor carries the potential for jail time and significant fines. The direct penalties and collateral consequences of a felony conviction are even more severe. Understanding these consequences is critical as you make decisions relating to your case. Even in a misdemeanor case, you should not....

Consequences »
Utah Criminal Defense Attorney - Reasons to Hope

Being charged with a crime is not the same as being convicted. But just being charged can affect more than you may have imagined - jail, job, family, bills, rent or mortgage. It can feel like everything has gone wrong, and may you wonder if anything can go right. But facing criminal prosecution does not mean giving up hope....

Reasons to Hope »
Home | Attorney Profile | Case Results | Criminal Code | FAQ | Legal Resources | Defense Strategy | Contact Us

Serving Salt Lake, Davis, Weber, Utah, Cache, Tooele, Summit, Box Elder, and Wasatch Counties, and all of Utah.

Attorney Stephen Howard practices as part of the Canyons Law Group, LLC and Stephen W. Howard, PC.

Offices in Salt Lake and Davis Counties
560 South 300 East, Suite 200, Salt Lake City, UT 84111
952 S. Main St., Suite A, Layton, UT 84041

Call now to arrange for a confidential initial consultation with an experienced and effective Utah criminal defense lawyer.

In Salt Lake City, call 801-449-1409.
In Davis County, call 801-923-4345.

Stephen W. Howard, PC

The materials in this website are intended for informational purposes only, and are not legal advice. Viewing or responding to materials in this site does not create an attorney-client relationship. Read Full Disclaimer.