If a family member stole my identity and took out a huge personal loan, what shouldI do?

A family member recently had troubles in his business. He stole my identity and probably used illegal means to get a huge personal loan in my name. He then fled the country. If I (green card holder) have assets overseas, would they come after my assets? What is the statue of limitations (CA) for this offense, and what are my chances of taking action against him assuming that he never returns? Would I be held responsible and liable for the debt if he does not return? What evidence should be gathered to prosecute him?

Asked on October 3, 2010 under Bankruptcy Law, California

Answers:

M.T.G., Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 10 years ago | Contributor

You need to get legal help as soon as you can.  You need to report the identity theft and prove that you had no idea or connection to the taking out of the loan in your name.  You need to not only make sure that criminal charges are brought but that you take the necessary steps to bring a civil suit against him as well. Whether or not you can collect from him is not as important as going through the steps to show that you are innocent of any clams that may be made (like collusion) and to get a judgement against him that you can file here.  Do this quickly.  The statute of limitation may be "tolled" or extended in this matter as it will probably not have started to run until you discovered the offense.  You gave no time frames here.  Good luck. 


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