If you're looking for a Montana online shoplifting class, it's important to know your Montana theft laws. This can help you understand more about your offense.

Please note that the Montana theft and shoplifting laws displayed on this page are to help you to understand your state Montana theft, shoplifting and stealing laws. While we have made every attempt to show the latest version of Montana theft laws, we do not guarantee its accuracy. This page is not a replacement for legal advice from an attorney. It is in your best interest that you consult with an appropriate lawyer for more information about Montana theft laws.

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Montana Theft Laws

45-6-301. Theft.

(1) A person commits the offense of theft when the person purposely or knowingly obtains or exerts unauthorized control over property of the owner and:

(a) has the purpose of depriving the owner of the property;

(b) purposely or knowingly uses, conceals, or abandons the property in a manner that deprives the owner of the property; or

(c) uses, conceals, or abandons the property knowing that the use, concealment, or abandonment probably will deprive the owner of the property.

(2) A person commits the offense of theft when the person purposely or knowingly obtains by threat or deception control over property of the owner and:

(a) has the purpose of depriving the owner of the property;

(b) purposely or knowingly uses, conceals, or abandons the property in a manner that deprives the owner of the property; or

(c) uses, conceals, or abandons the property knowing that the use, concealment, or abandonment probably will deprive the owner of the property.

(3) A person commits the offense of theft when the person purposely or knowingly obtains control over stolen property knowing the property to have been stolen by another and:

(a) has the purpose of depriving the owner of the property;

(b) purposely or knowingly uses, conceals, or abandons the property in a manner that deprives the owner of the property; or

(c) uses, conceals, or abandons the property knowing that the use, concealment, or abandonment probably will deprive the owner of the property.

(4) A person commits the offense of theft when the person purposely or knowingly obtains or exerts unauthorized control over any part of any public assistance provided under Title 52 or 53 by a state or county agency, regardless of the original source of assistance, by means of:

(a) a knowingly false statement, representation, or impersonation; or

(b) a fraudulent scheme or device.

(5) A person commits the offense of theft when the person purposely or knowingly obtains or exerts or helps another obtain or exert unauthorized control over any part of any benefits provided under Title 39, chapter 71, by means of:

(a) a knowingly false statement, representation, or impersonation; or

(b) deception or other fraudulent action.

(6) (a) A person commits the offense of theft when the person purposely or knowingly commits insurance fraud as provided in 33-1-1202 or 33-1-1302;

(b) purposely or knowingly diverts or misappropriates insurance premiums as provided in 33-17-1102; or

(c) purposely or knowingly receives small business health insurance premium incentive payments or premium assistance payments or tax credits under Title 33, chapter 22, part 20, to which the person is not entitled.

(7) A person commits the offense of theft of property by embezzlement when, with the purpose to deprive the owner of the property, the person:

(a) purposely or knowingly obtains or exerts unauthorized control over property of the person's employer or over property entrusted to the person; or

(b) purposely or knowingly obtains by deception control over property of the person's employer or over property entrusted to the person.

(8) (a) Except as provided in subsection (8)(b), a person convicted of the offense of theft of property not exceeding $1,500 in value shall be fined an amount not to exceed $1,500 or be imprisoned in the county jail for a term not to exceed 6 months, or both. A person convicted of a second offense shall be fined $1,500 or be imprisoned in the county jail for a term not to exceed 6 months, or both. A person convicted of a third or subsequent offense shall be fined $1,500 and be imprisoned in the county jail for a term of not less than 30 days or more than 6 months.

(b) (i) Except as provided in subsection (8)(c), a person convicted of the offense of theft of property exceeding $1,500 in value or theft of any amount of anhydrous ammonia for the purpose of manufacturing dangerous drugs shall be fined an amount not to exceed $50,000 or be imprisoned in a state prison for a term not to exceed 10 years, or both.

(ii) A person convicted of the theft of any commonly domesticated hoofed animal shall be fined an amount of not less than $5,000 or more than $50,000 or be imprisoned in a state prison for a term not to exceed 10 years, or both. If a prison term is deferred, the court shall order the offender to perform 416 hours of community service during a 1-year period, in the offender's county of residence. In addition to the fine and imprisonment, the offender's property is subject to criminal forfeiture pursuant to 45-6-328 and 45-6-329.

(c) A person convicted of the offense of theft of property exceeding $10,000 in value by embezzlement shall be imprisoned in a state prison for a term of not less than 1 year or more than 10 years and may be fined an amount not to exceed $50,000. The court may, in its discretion, place the person on probation with the requirement that restitution be made under terms set by the court. If the terms are not met, the required prison term may be ordered.

(9) Amounts involved in thefts committed pursuant to a common scheme or the same transaction, whether from the same person or several persons, may be aggregated in determining the value of the property.

45-6-302. Theft of lost or mislaid property.

(1) A person who obtains control over lost or mislaid property commits the offense of theft when the person:

(a) knows or learns the identity of the owner or knows, is aware of, or learns of a reasonable method of identifying the owner;

(b) fails to take reasonable measures to restore the property to the owner; and

(c) has the purpose of depriving the owner permanently of the use or benefit of the property.

(2) A person convicted of theft of lost or mislaid property shall be fined not to exceed $500 or be imprisoned in the county jail for a period not to exceed 6 months.

45-6-303. Offender's interest in the property.

(1) It is no defense to a charge of theft of property that the offender has an interest therein when the owner also has an interest to which the offender is not entitled.

(2) It is no defense that theft was from the offender's spouse, except that misappropriation of household and personal effects or other property normally accessible to both spouses is theft only if it occurs after the parties have ceased living together.

45-6-305. Theft of labor or services or use of property.

(1) A person commits the offense of theft when the person obtains the temporary use of property, labor, or services of another that are available only for hire, by means of threat or deception or knowing that the use is without the consent of the person providing the property, labor, or services.

(2) A person convicted of theft of labor or services or use of property shall be fined not to exceed $500 or be imprisoned in the county jail for a term not to exceed 6 months, or both.

45-6-332. Theft of identity.

(1) A person commits the offense of theft of identity if the person purposely or knowingly obtains personal identifying information of another person and uses that information for any unlawful purpose, including to obtain or attempt to obtain credit, goods, services, financial information, or medical information in the name of the other person without the consent of the other person.

(2) (a) A person convicted of the offense of theft of identity if no economic benefit was gained or was attempted to be gained or if an economic benefit of less than $1,500 was gained or attempted to be gained shall be fined an amount not to exceed $1,500, imprisoned in the county jail for a term not to exceed 6 months, or both.

(b) A person convicted of the offense of theft of identity if an economic benefit of $1,500 or more was gained or attempted to be gained shall be fined an amount not to exceed $10,000, imprisoned in a state prison for a term not to exceed 10 years, or both.

(3) As used in this section, "personal identifying information" includes but is not limited to the name, date of birth, address, telephone number, driver's license number, social security number or other federal government identification number, tribal identification card number, place of employment, employee identification number, mother's maiden name, financial institution account number, credit card number, or similar identifying information relating to a person.

(4) If restitution is ordered, the court may include, as part of its determination of an amount owed, payment for any costs incurred by the victim, including attorney fees and any costs incurred in clearing the credit history or credit rating of the victim or in connection with any civil or administrative proceeding to satisfy any debt, lien, or other obligation of the victim arising as a result of the actions of the defendant.

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