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Joseph, Criminal Defense Lawyer
Category: Criminal Law
Satisfied Customers: 7280
Experience:  I have 15 years experience in criminal litigation including several years as a felony prosecutor
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I went through a horrible divorce. My ex got everything, all

Resolved Question:

I went through a horrible divorce. My ex got everything, all assets and I got nothing. He does not pay child support. We have 50/50 joint legal custody of our 2 kids ages 9 and 11. In order to provide for them I applied and qualified for AZ state medical ACCCHS and food stamps through DES. I then got a low paying job but did not disclose the job to DES. I continued to receive benefits for 6 months while employed. I recently accepted another job and have disclosed this new job to DES and have stopped receiving services. I realize by not disclosing my job to DES that is fraud and there are consequences. I am scared that I might be charged with a felony and lose my kids and my job. What legal actions should I take? I have not notified DES of my fraud, but I feel my ex husband will because I am taking him to court for child support. Should I notify DES myself, will that help my case any? Is there any chance I could go to jail? I am very afraid at this point.
Submitted: 5 years ago.
Category: Criminal Law
Expert:  Joseph replied 5 years ago.

Hello and thanks for choosing Just Answer®. I am a licensed attorney, and I will be glad to try and assist you.


To provide you with accurate information, could you please clarify these points so I can best address your inquiry:


  1. How much did you receive in benefits during the period in which you were employed?
  2. Could you pay back those benefits?



Once I hear back from you, I will be glad to let you know my answer. There may be some delay as I am assisting other customers or am away from my computer. Please rest assured, however, that I will get back to you as soon as possible.


Thank you.

Customer: replied 5 years ago.
I received about $3000 worth of food stamps and an $800 cash grant. I also received accchs medical coverage for myself and my two children. I could borrow money to pay it back.
Expert:  Joseph replied 5 years ago.

There is certainly a real possibility that they would never know about the illegally obtained benefits. However, with your former spouse threatening to report you, there is clearly a reason to be concerned.


I would urge you to speak with a criminal defense attorney in your area. Every office has a different approach as to how to handle illegally obtained benefits. An attorney could contact them and inquire as to whether they would be willing to receive reimbursement in exchange for an agreement to not prosecute.


Even if there were to be a prosecution, you may be able to obtain a reasonable result. As a former prosecutor, I am very familiar with this type of case. As my Info Request alluded to, the prosecutor's primary objective is to get reimbursement for the department. If you can afford to get the restitution paid in full, it is very likely you could obtain a probationary sentence.


Please let me know if anything requires clarification.


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