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What is embezzlement?

Many people may have a job or professional relationship with a company in New York that provides them some level of access to assets. These assets may or may not be liquid but could all have a financial value. Whether a vice president of finance or an independent accountant, people in these situations are likely aware of the need for properly documenting their work and actions taken. One reason for this is to protect themselves against potential accusations of embezzlement.

As explained by The Balance, embezzlement is sometimes thought of or referred to as employee theft. However, it is not only an employee who may be accused of stealing from an employer but a contractor, vendor or other professional. Embezzlement is a type of theft that is classified as a white collar crime and there are certain elements that a prosecution may need to prove in order to support allegations that someone is guilty of embezzlement.

One factor is not simply the presence of a fiduciary relationship but that a defendant was able to obtain certain assets directly because of or via that relationship. Ownership of assets should actually have been taken by the defendant or actually transferred to another party by the defendant. Additionally, a charge of embezzlement may also require some proof that the alleged theft was intentional.

This information is not intended to provide legal advice but is instead meant to give residents in New York an overview of some of the qualities or factors that may be involved in an accusation of embezzlement.

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