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Making a False Document

Section 253 of the NSW Crimes Act makes it an offence to make a false document. The offence of making a false document relates to a person either creating a new forged document or forging details on an existing document with the intention to use it to obtain a financial advantage. It is one of three new forgery offences that came into force on 22 February 2010. This new section is an effective reiteration of the repealed make false instrument offence (section 300(1)).

Maximum penalty

The maximum penalty for making a false document is 10 years imprisonment.

What the prosecution must prove

In order for a person to be found guilty of this offence, it must be proved that:

  • The accused made a false document; and
  • The accused had the intention to use the false document to induce a person to accept it as genuine;

(a) to obtain property belonging to another; or
(b) to obtain any financial advantage or cause any financial disadvantage; or
(c) to influence the exercise of a public duty.

Relevant definitions for make false document

“Obtain” a financial advantage includes:

  • obtain a financial advantage for oneself or for another person, and
  • induce a third person to do something that results in oneself or another person obtaining a financial advantage, and
  • keep a financial advantage that one has,

whether the financial advantage is permanent or temporary.

“Cause” a financial disadvantage means:

  • cause a financial disadvantage to another person, or
  • induce a third person to do something that results in another person suffering a financial disadvantage, whether the financial disadvantage is permanent or temporary.

If you require legal advice or representation in any legal matter, please contact Armstrong Legal. 

Michelle Makela

This article was written by Michelle Makela

Michelle has over 15 years experience in the legal industry, working across commercial litigation, criminal law, family law and estate planning.  Michelle has been involved in all practice areas of the firm and in her personal practice has had experience in litigation at all levels (State and Federal Industrial Tribunals, the Supreme Court, Court of Appeal, the Federal Court, Federal...

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