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What to Know About Embezzlement Cases in Pennsylvania


Embezzlement is a subcategory of theft that involves a person entrusted to manage the money of another individual or an organization stealing some or all that money for personal profit. The defendant in this case would have had legal access to the money, but not ownership of it.

There are many different scenarios in which this crime occurs. In a white-collar setting, for example, executives or account managers may have access to clients’ money and be trusted not to take that money for their own gain. Another common embezzlement situation involves family members who take money from a loved one in a nursing home after they’ve been placed in control of that person’s finances.

Potential penalties for embezzlement in Pennsylvania

The penalties handed down for embezzlement in Pennsylvania depend largely on the type of property stolen and its value. Here are some of the variations:

  • Specific types of property: The state has some special rules on specific types of property or circumstances. Any embezzlement of property during a natural, manmade or war-caused disaster comes with heavier penalties, as does embezzlement of firearms or anhydrous ammonia. These penalties include fines of up to $25,000 and/or 10 years in prison.
  • Property worth less than $50: Penalties in this case include fines of up to $2,500 and/or up to a year in jail.
  • Property worth between $50 and $200: Penalties include fines of up to $5,000 and/or up to two years in prison.
  • Property worth between $200 and $2000: Penalties include fines of up to $10,000 and/or up to five years in prison.
  • Property worth more than $2000: Penalties may include fines of up to $15,000 and/or up to seven years in prison. This category includes embezzlement of motor vehicles, regardless of their assessed value at the time of the theft.


There are also special provisions in Pennsylvania state law for embezzlement committed by school treasurers and employees of insurance companies.

For further guidance on your rights when accused of embezzlement, contact an experienced Philadelphia criminal defense lawyer at The Law Offices of David Jay Glassman. You can reach us online or call 215-563-7100.