Can You Go to Jail for False Accusations in Illinois?

Sometimes, you might genuinely believe something that wasn’t actually true, or you might have told a white lie, and it’s not a major problem. Mistakes happen, and, in most cases, you can simply move on. Unfortunately, a false accusation is more serious. 

If you made a statement that you later found wasn’t true, you might be worried about your future. Can you go to jail for false accusations in Illinois? 

Unfortunately, it’s a concern many Illinois residents have, but it’s not a question you have to face alone. If you’re worried that you might be tried for a false claim, reach out to the lawyers at Chicago Trusted Attorneys™ for help and information on your case. 

False Accusations Are Illegal 

Making an accusation of a crime is a serious choice to make. That person’s future might be in danger, especially if they’re convicted. Because of this, false accusations are taken especially seriously. Unfortunately, that means you might be on trial next for a false accusation. 

Illinois’ false claims act states that if you make a false accusation about someone that you know is false, you could be in legal trouble. These false claims fall into the same area as perjury. 

Perjury is a Class 3 felony, which means that you could be looking at severe penalties. Your fines may be maxed out at $25,000, and you could face two to five years in prison. That’s a significant amount of time, so it’s best to do what you can to defend yourself if you’ve made untrue statements. 

Defenses for a False Accusation 

Typically, you’ll be able to fight accusations of perjury on the grounds that you didn’t know you were lying. For example, you may believe that you witnessed a person stealing a car. You reported them to the police, but it was later proven that you weren’t telling the truth. However, if you genuinely didn’t know that they weren’t the right person or that they weren’t stealing the car, you may use that as a defense. 

Otherwise, mistakes do happen. Returning to the example above, you might have thought you recognized the person you believed was stealing a car. However, you later found that you were mistaken. If you didn’t know your statements were false at the time and didn’t realize you had made a mistake, you may have a better chance to avoid a sentence in Illinois. 

Contact an Illinois Lawyer about Your False Accusations Case

If you’ve made a false accusation, the police might be concerned about the state of the other person’s future. An arrest and trial can be upsetting and expensive, which leaves them in a difficult position. Worse, the authorities may believe you knew you weren’t telling the truth. 

So, can you go to jail for false accusations in Illinois? Unfortunately, if you don’t defend yourself, jail or even prison time is a possibility. However, that’s why it’s so important to start fighting back now. Your attorney from Chicago Trusted Attorneys™ can help you make the right decisions to recover from your situation. 

Ready to defend yourself from a false accusation conviction? Reach out for help by calling 312-931-5411 or by completing the online form below.