Simulating legal process is a very specific, rarely charged crime in Wisconsin. But when it is charged, it’s serious. Simulating legal process is a felony. One version of the offense is a Class I felony, which carries a maximum penalty of 3.5 years in prison, $10,000.00 in fines, or both. That 3.5 years prison breaks down into 1.5 years initial confinement followed by 2 years extended supervision. An aggravated version of this charge is a Class H felony, which carries 6 years prison, $10,000.00 in fines, or both. That 6 years in prison breaks down into 3 years initial confinement followed by 3 years extended supervision.
When facing allegations of felonious criminal conduct, it’s important to hire experienced, smart criminal defense counsel. It’s even more important when facing a unique criminal charge, such as simulating legal process. At Van Severen Law Office, S.C., our criminal defense attorneys are regularly recognize as some of the best in Wisconsin. 100% of our practice focuses on defending individuals accused of committing crimes. We don’t work on civil cases. We believe that our laserlike focus on understanding and defending individuals accused of committing crimes helps all of our clients.
Finally, we think that transparent pricing and treating your fairly is important. That’s one of the reasons we offer free consultations to potential clients. We’ll sit down, discuss your case, and figure out how we can help. Contact us at (414) 270-0202 to be connected with one of our defense lawyers today.
Section 946,.68 of the Wisconsin Statutes provides the legal definition of simulating legal process. The statute indicates the following:
(1g) In this section, “legal process” includes a subpoena, summons, complaint, warrant, injunction, writ, notice, pleading, order or other document that directs a person to perform or refrain from performing a specified act and compliance with which is enforceable by a court or governmental agency.(1r)(a) Except as provided in pars. (b) and (c), whoever sends or delivers to another any document which simulates legal process is guilty of a Class I felony.(b) If the document under par. (a) is sent or delivered with intent to induce payment of a claim, the person is guilty of a Class H felony.(c) If the document under par. (a) simulates any criminal process, the person is guilty of a Class H felony.(2) Proof that a document specified under sub. (1r) was mailed or was delivered to any person with intent that it be forwarded to the intended recipient is sufficient proof of sending.(3) This section applies even though the simulating document contains a statement to the effect that it is not legal process.(4) Violation of this section may be prosecuted in either the county where the document was sent or the county in which it was delivered.
Criminal jury instructions are important throughout the criminal justice system. But for the purpose of our article, they’re also important. Criminal jury instructions break crimes down into separate parts. Those parts, called elements, are what the government must prove beyond a reasonable doubt to sustain a conviction against you. If they cannot, you cannot be convicted. Sometimes we, as criminal defense attorneys, build our defenses to criminal charges around these elements at trial.
“Simulate means to imitate or have the appearance of being genuine.”
“Legal process” includes a subpoena, summons, complaint, warrant, injunction, writ, notice, pleading, order, or other document that directs the person to perform or refrain from performing a specified act and compliance with which is enforceable by a court or governmental agency.
Sometimes individuals are surprised by how easy it is to stumble into criminal liability. This charge is certainly an example of that. Simply sitting at home, drafting up a document, and mailing that document out is enough to be charged with a felony-level criminal offense. While this doesn’t seem like a whole lot (“I only sent a letter, surely I won’t go to prison.”), we believe that these are the kinds of offenses that are the most important to hire competent counsel for. A felony conviction, or any time in custody, could be enough to throw your life off the rails.
Hiring the right criminal defense attorney can be a frustrating process. All attorneys have law licenses. All can handle criminal cases. But are they all good? Is the individual you’re talking to a complete joker who has no idea how to properly handle a criminal case? At Van Severen Law Office, S.C., all of the attorneys at our firm focus 100% of their time defending individuals accused of criminal and drunk driving cases throughout Wisconsin. A joker isn’t going to get your results, and that’s not who you’re going to meet at our firm.
Simulating legal process is a rare criminal charge in Wisconsin, but prosecutors certainly still pursue it. And it’s serious. All felonies can result in you being sent to prison. That’s certainly not a guaranteed result. Depending on the circumstances, it may not even be probable. But building a proper defense is important. And it’s our opinion that the first step in doing this is to hire the best criminal defense lawyer you can afford.
Contact Van Severen Law Office, S.C. at (414) 270-0202. You’ll reach a real human 24/7/365, so don’t wait to make the call.