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  1. #1
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    Default Am I at Risk if I Unknowingly Was Included on a Fraudulent W-2 Form for Rental App

    My question involves criminal law for the state of: Washington

    I just found a W-2 form that my girlfriend has made without my knowledge with a fake company using my home address (I own my home). She is using the fake W-2 to try to assist her son in being approved for an apartment application.

    She also filled out a rental application form with the same fake company listed under 'Current Employer', with my home address as the company's address. On the rental application, she has put my name down as 'Supervisor', with my phone number. There is a fake monthly salary listed as well.

    I'm not sure, but I think this would be fraud on her part. I'm wondering if I am at risk criminally or civilly for having my address on the fake W-2 form, and for having my name and address on the rental application.

    Thanks for reading.

  2. #2
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    Default Re: Am I at Risk if I Unknowingly Was Included on a Fraudulent W-2 Form for Rental Ap

    Quote Quoting etrain80
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    I'm not sure, but I think this would be fraud on her part.
    No question about it. She is providing false documentation to deceive the landlord about her son's qualifications for the apartment. That's fraud.

    Quote Quoting etrain80
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    I'm wondering if I am at risk criminally or civilly for having my address on the fake W-2 form, and for having my name and address on the rental application.
    You might. If you had no involvement in this other than she used your address then you aren't guilty of the fraud. The question is whether the police and prosecutor would believe that you did not have some active role in all this.

    Might want to consider whether you want to stay in a relationship with a woman who apparently has no qualms about deceiving others to get what she wants. That could end up biting you some day.

  3. #3
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    Default Re: Am I at Risk if I Unknowingly Was Included on a Fraudulent W-2 Form for Rental Ap

    The fact you are aware of the fraud where you are represented as the employer is not in itself criminal but it surely looks bad for you. How you treat any inquiry the landlord might make is what would implicate you in the crime. If the landlord contacts you are you going to say you aren’t an employer and you did not issue the W2? A non- response where you allow the landlord to believe the info might be true is problematic for you as well.

  4. #4
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    Default Re: Am I at Risk if I Unknowingly Was Included on a Fraudulent W-2 Form for Rental Ap

    Sounds like fraud or attempted fraud, and the fact that she has tangentially involved you definitely puts you at risk. You can mitigate that risk by exposing what she did. Now that you know what she has done, if you fail to expose it and continue your relationship with this criminal, you will make yourself complicit in her conduct.

  5. #5
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    Default Re: Am I at Risk if I Unknowingly Was Included on a Fraudulent W-2 Form for Rental Ap

    Quote Quoting pg1067
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    Sounds like fraud or attempted fraud, and the fact that she has tangentially involved you definitely puts you at risk. You can mitigate that risk by exposing what she did. Now that you know what she has done, if you fail to expose it and continue your relationship with this criminal, you will make yourself complicit in her conduct.

    A failure to expose the fraud does not make op complicit. That suggest anybody that sees a crime and fails to report it is complicit in that crime. Are you actually suggesting that is correct? If so, that would mean every time I see a person speeding and don’t report it I’m somehow complicit in the act..

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    Default Re: Am I at Risk if I Unknowingly Was Included on a Fraudulent W-2 Form for Rental Ap

    Quote Quoting jk
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    A failure to expose the fraud does not make op complicit. That suggest anybody that sees a crime and fails to report it is complicit in that crime. Are you actually suggesting that is correct? If so, that would mean every time I see a person speeding and don’t report it I’m somehow complicit in the act..
    Failing to report a crime you witness is generally not a crime (though there are limited exceptions to that). However, failing to report the crime along with any act of concealment of the crime may be an offense. In this case, for example, if the landlord were to contact the OP and his answers to the landlord's questions effectively help conceal the fraud (which does not mean active participation in the fraud) that may be criminal. In that regard, silence or misdirection when asked certain questions may amount to concealment. If contacted by the landlord he'd be better off telling the landlord the truth rather than responding in a way that helps conceal what the girlfriend has done.

  7. #7
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    Default Re: Am I at Risk if I Unknowingly Was Included on a Fraudulent W-2 Form for Rental Ap

    Quote Quoting jk
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    A failure to expose the fraud does not make op complicit. That suggest anybody that sees a crime and fails to report it is complicit in that crime. Are you actually suggesting that is correct? If so, that would mean every time I see a person speeding and don’t report it I’m somehow complicit in the act..
    Your analogy to one who simply witnesses a crime is absurd. While the word "may" may have been a better choice than "will" in the last sentence of my prior response, I otherwise stand by it. The OP's girlfriend has involved the OP in her crime. Now that the OP knows about it, he/she is at risk if he/she fails to do anything about it.

  8. #8
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    Default Re: Am I at Risk if I Unknowingly Was Included on a Fraudulent W-2 Form for Rental Ap

    Quote Quoting pg1067
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    Your analogy to one who simply witnesses a crime is absurd. While the word "may" may have been a better choice than "will" in the last sentence of my prior response, I otherwise stand by it. The OP's girlfriend has involved the OP in her crime. Now that the OP knows about it, he/she is at risk if he/she fails to do anything about it.
    if he does nothing, he commits no crime. Obviously if he becomes involved such as responding affirmatively to a landlord making an inquiry regarding the fraudulent document, then of course he is complicit and part of the crime itself.

    My analogy was spot on as long as the guy does nothing to involve himself. Witnessing a crime is and failing to report said, in most situations, crime is not a crime as it does not cause one to be involved in the crime. There is no difference between witnessing an act of fraud and observing a speeding car. They are both crimes and unless you become actually involved in the illegal action, failing to report the crime does not make you a criminal.


    Taxing matters: standing silent if one is asked about the “facts” by a party who would be the victim of the fraud is participation. At that point he would be acting to conceal the truth which of course makes him complicit. I am not speaking to such a situation. What I am saying is the guy is not a party to the crime by not actively reporting the actions to either the authorities or the victim.

  9. #9
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    Default Re: Am I at Risk if I Unknowingly Was Included on a Fraudulent W-2 Form for Rental Ap

    Quote Quoting jk
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    What I am saying is the guy is not a party to the crime by not actively reporting the actions to either the authorities or the victim.
    That may be so, but reporting it would go a long way toward the police and prosecutor believing he had no active participation in it. So he has a choice to make. First, he can stay silent and hope that the fraud is not discovered or, if it is, that the prosecutor and police will believe he wasn't involved in it. Second, he can report it to the authorities or at least inform the landlord the documents are false, which should clear him of suspicion of being involved. Finally, he can try covering up for the girlfriend and thus put himself in jeopardy of conviction on that offense even if he doesn't go down for involvement in the crime itself.

  10. #10
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    Default Re: Am I at Risk if I Unknowingly Was Included on a Fraudulent W-2 Form for Rental Ap

    Quote Quoting Taxing Matters
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    That may be so, but reporting it would go a long way toward the police and prosecutor believing he had no active participation in it. So he has a choice to make. First, he can stay silent and hope that the fraud is not discovered or, if it is, that the prosecutor and police will believe he wasn't involved in it. Second, he can report it to the authorities or at least inform the landlord the documents are false, which should clear him of suspicion of being involved. Finally, he can try covering up for the girlfriend and thus put himself in jeopardy of conviction on that offense even if he doesn't go down for involvement in the crime itself.
    well, I can’t suggest the guy rat out his girlfriend for something like this.

    But regardless, unless he somehow participates in the crime he is not guilty of committing a crime as page1067 states he would be. That was my point.

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