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A match made in the penal code

In a recent issue of The Gavel magazine, founding attorney James Daily had a featured article on a useful section of the penal code when helping victims of theft.

There is more to theft than simply making sure that the crime is dealt with. There is also significant damage to the plaintiff who had their money (or property) stolen in the first place.

Here's more on how James Daily's article, "496 Charlie" discusses the use of Penal Code section 496(c) to fight for clients who have been victims of a theft.

When 496(c) applies

When someone is dealing with a theft, it can turn everything upside down. There is more to the problem then the assets that were stolen, there is the time lost when those assets were needed. That is why there is a civil remedy for theft in Penal Code section 496(c).

In his article, James Daily discusses the remedy that 496(c) provides. Section 496(c) allows for a plaintiff to bring a suit for damages when injured by someone's violation of 496(a). Someone is a victim of a 496(a) violation when their: (1) property is stolen, (2) a defendant received, concealed, or withheld the property (3) and that defendant knew the property was stolen.

A step toward righting the wrong

While there does need to be a violation of 496(a) to bring a claim under 496(c), there does not need to be a criminal conviction or prosecution.

Under 496(c) a victim can bring a claim for three times the amount of actual damages. Additionally, the victim can also recover the cost of bringing the claim and reasonable attorney's fees.

There is no amount that can get the victim back to where they were before the crime, but bringing a claim under 496(c) is a way to right the wrong.

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