What Are the Penalties for Shoplifting in New Jersey?

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Many people make the mistake of shoplifting. They often do not realize just how serious of a crime shoplifting can be. That said, if you’ve been charged with shoplifting, you must continue reading and speak with a Bergen County criminal defense lawyer to learn more about these charges and how we can help you fight them. Here are some of the questions you may have:

How is shoplifting defined in the state of New Jersey?

Shoplifting is a type of theft that is defined loosely as intentionally depriving a property owner of their property without their consent. That being said, a person can be charged with shoplifting for a wide variety of actions, including altering a price tag, physically taking or concealing merchandise, transferring merchandise to another container, or under-ringing merchandise. If you are accused of doing any of the aforementioned, you will most likely face shoplifting charges.

What happens if I am caught shoplifting in New Jersey?

Depending on the dollar value of the property allegedly stolen, you may face either a disorderly persons offense or an indictable criminal offense. The greater the dollar value of the property stolen, the harsher the penalties you may face. The penalties for shoplifting in New Jersey are as follows:

  • For property worth less than $200: This is a disorderly persons offense, which can entail a $1,000 fine and up to six months of incarceration. You will also develop a criminal record.
  • For property worth between $200-$500: This is a fourth-degree felony, which can entail a $10,000 fine and up to 18 months of incarceration.
  • For property worth between $500-$75,000: This is a third-degree felony, which can entail a $15,000 fine and anywhere between three and five years of incarceration.
  • For property worth more than $75,000: This is a second-degree crime, which can entail a potential $150,000 fine and anywhere between five and 10 years of incarceration.

The bottom line is that a shoplifting charge can significantly impact a person’s life for years down the road, and if you are currently facing one, you need an experienced Bergen County criminal defense lawyer on your side.


The Law Office of Boyd & Squitieri prides itself on providing our clients with the competent, honest, and effective legal advice they deserve. Whether you are facing sex crime charges, require assistance filing for bankruptcy, or are looking to go through the foreclosure mediation process, you can depend on us to fight for your rights through every step of the process going forward. Contact the Law Office Boyd & Squitieri today to learn more about how our legal team can help you.