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Can I go to jail if I use my in-laws credit cards without permission?

Houston, TX |

I used my in-laws credits cards to purchase things for my family as we were going through a rough time. They did not authorized me to use them and the amount escalated to $39,000. I have been making payments on each and every one of the cards. Now they know about what I did and my father-in-law is threatening me to call the police so they can take me to jail. I had access to their accounts because I was in charge of paying their bill. From his credit cards I use one and from my moyher-in-law's I used 3. My wife and I had a meeting with them and assure them that we will continue making the payments and possibly transfer little by little some on the amount we owe to an account under our name. If I was to be taking in, for how long would I be in jail and do I need to repay it back?

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Attorney answers 4

Best Answer

This is felony credit card abuse. You can absolutely go to jail for it. You would stay in jail until someone posted your bond. If you were not bonded out, you would stay in jail until you entered a plea bargain agreement for probation (if you pled to prison time obviously you would not be released) or until you had a trial (if you were acquitted or placed on probation I'd convicted). Repaying the money would be a condition of probation, in addition to fines and court costs, monthly probation fees, and any other costs of probation. If a case is filed against you, you will need an experienced attorney working for you immediately.

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Sure, you can go to jail. In fact, if your in-laws want to get out of the debt (and they certainly should) they will most likely have to provide a full explanation of what happened (and who did it) to the credit card issuer. The issuer, for that amount of money, will likely pursue it further, I'd suggest a discussion with a good criminal lawyer today. I changed your topic to criminal law as it is not a bankruptcy question.


Yes, you could go to jail. Moreover, your debt is probably not dischargeable in bankruptcy. Your excuse ("we were going through a rough time") is not much different than the one people use who rob convenience stores. See a criminal defense attorney, and stop blabbing about this online because you may waive your 5th amendment privilege. (In fact, you probably already have.)



Answers on Avvo are for general information purposes only and should not be relied upon as legal advice. No attorney / client relationship is created by providing this answer. For specific advice about your situation, you should consult a competent attorney of your choosing.