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Financial Abuse

Updated: February 24, 2021

If someone opened up accounts in my name without my permission, is this identity theft?

If anyone, including a spouse, family member, or intimate partner, uses your personal information to open up an account in your name without your permission, this could be considered identify theft. Some examples of personal information that someone might use are your Social Security number, credit card and banking account numbers, usernames, passwords, and patient records. Fraudulent uses of this information may include opening new credit accounts, taking out loans, stealing money from financial accounts or using available credit.1

Each state law defines identity theft differently. The National Conference of State Legislatures lists the statutory citation for identity theft laws in each state. However, to read the actual language of the law, you’d have to Google the statutory citation for your state. If you have been a victim of identity theft, the Identity Theft Resource Center may have helpful information. Note: WomensLaw.org is not affiliated with either website and cannot vouch for their services; we provide this for your information only.

You can also report identity theft to the police or through the Federal Trade Commission website on identity theft or by calling 1-877-ID-THEFT (438-4338). To read more about steps you can take if you think you have been the victim of identity theft, visit the federal government’s website.

1New York State Office for the Prevention of Domestic Violence