Banks must provide records of a customer’s account when presented with a subpoena. Officials may review them for illicit activity, according to Section 655.059 of The Florida Legislature.
Under the Right to Financial Privacy Act of 1978, government agencies need to notify individuals before obtaining records. A written notice must provide an investigation’s procedures and purpose. It also explains how an individual may dispute the request for records.
In some cases, an individual may not receive notification
The U.S. Department of Justice describes how an exception to providing notification may apply. In some cases, children or other blameless individuals may experience harm from an investigation. If an individual could become violent because of an inquiry, an official may retrieve records through an emergency access exception.
The U.S. DOJ exception may also apply to an individual who can afford to leave the Sunshine State to avoid prosecution. A prosecutor may file criminal charges after finding evidence from bank records, and a defendant then has the legal right to contest them.
An investigation results in criminal charges and an international arrest
As reported by the Orlando Sentinel, federal officials retrieved banking and IRS records of a Florida business owner over allegations of a fraudulent loan application. After receiving more than $7.2 million in emergency relief funds, the 45-year-old found himself detained by officials in Croatia on an international arrest warrant.
U.S. officials charged the Florida resident with several counts of illegal monetary transactions, aggravated identity theft and wire fraud. Loan proceeds intended for his business payroll allegedly went toward a mansion and three luxury cars instead.
An inspection of financial information may uncover evidence for officials to file charges. If an individual demonstrates a risk of leaving the state, a prosecutor may access records without providing notice of the right to dispute an inquiry.