Using Son Of Sam Laws To Collect Cash From Criminals


When people commit crimes, there are laws in place to prevent them from profiting from the acts. Typically this means taking any money or property the person acquired as a result of the criminal act. In some states, however, this also includes any money the person may make from avenues that aren't directly connected to the crime. Here's more information about this issue and how you can capture profits from a criminal who hurt you.

The Money You Can Confiscate

About 45 states have Son of Sam laws that allow victims and/or government agencies to essentially confiscate money criminals make from their crimes. Although the laws vary depending on where you live, the types of eligible income include the following:

  • Cash from publishers or producers for book, movie, or television deals
  • Money or property given to the criminal for committing the crime
  • Income earned from selling memorabilia connected to the crime
  • Money the criminals earns selling products referencing the crime
  • Ad income from a blog the criminal maintains that discusses the crime

Essentially, any income criminals earn off the notoriety of their crimes is fair game for victims or the government agency to take. In some states, victims can even go after funds earned by family members of criminals if they try to make money off the crimes.

How to Get the Cash

Many states require companies or individuals to send any money they intend to pay the criminals they contract with to the state treasurer's office or other government agency. Sometimes the responsible agency will notify victims the money is available, and they then need to file claims against the relevant victims' fund to get it.

However, many times getting money from a perpetrator trying to profit from his or her crime typically requires you to keep up with what's happening with the person and either notify appropriate government agency about what's going on or file a civil suit against the criminal to collect the funds. For instance, if you learn a publisher has solicited a book about the crime from the perpetrator in California, you can use the Son of Sam II law to sue the person for damages for up to 10 years after the defendant was convicted.

Collecting profits from a perpetrator of a crime against you can be challenging. Contact a personal injury attorney like Putnam Lieb for more information about and help with this type of lawsuit.


22 August 2016

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