Offenses Against Property

ORS 164.085
Theft by deception


A person, who obtains property of another thereby, commits theft by deception when, with intent to defraud, the person:


Creates or confirms another’s false impression of law, value, intention or other state of mind that the actor does not believe to be true;


Fails to correct a false impression that the person previously created or confirmed;


Prevents another from acquiring information pertinent to the disposition of the property involved;


Sells or otherwise transfers or encumbers property, failing to disclose a lien, adverse claim or other legal impediment to the enjoyment of the property, whether such impediment is or is not valid, or is or is not a matter of official record; or


Promises performance that the person does not intend to perform or knows will not be performed.


“Deception” does not include falsity as to matters having no pecuniary significance, or representations unlikely to deceive ordinary persons in the group addressed. For purposes of this subsection, the theft of a companion animal, as defined in ORS 164.055 (Theft in the first degree), or a captive wild animal is a matter having pecuniary significance.


In a prosecution for theft by deception, the defendant’s intention or belief that a promise would not be performed may not be established by or inferred from the fact alone that such promise was not performed.


In a prosecution for theft by deception committed by means of a bad check, it is prima facie evidence of knowledge that the check or order would not be honored if:


The drawer has no account with the drawee at the time the check or order is drawn or uttered; or


Payment is refused by the drawee for lack of funds, upon presentation within 30 days after the date of utterance, and the drawer fails to make good within 10 days after receiving notice of refusal. [1971 c.743 §128; 1991 c.837 §10; 2007 c.71 §49]

Notes of Decisions

Under former similar statute (ORS 165.205)

The accused must have intended to defraud the injured party, made a false pretense, the latter must have relied on the false representation believing it to be true and must thereby have been induced to part with something of value. State v. Clermont, 9 Or App 141, 495 P2d 305 (1972), Sup Ct review denied

In general

“Intent to defraud” means that person acts with conscious objective to take property from another person by deception. State v. Reynolds, 246 Or App 152, 265 P3d 22 (2011)

Theft by deception is subject to statute extending statute of limitation for offenses involves material element of fraud. Monfore v. Persson, 296 Or App 625, 439 P3d 519 (2019)


In general

54 OLR 125 (1975)


Last accessed
Mar. 11, 2023