Levels Of Misdemeanors
A misdemeanor is a criminal act that is considered to be less serious than a full-fledged felony. However, misdemeanors are more serious than infractions or regulatory offences.
The punishments across the states vary, but a misdemeanor does not usually require more than a 12 month jail term in the local county jail. In addition to jail time, misdemeanors can result in probation, community service, fines payable to the courts, counseling and many more.
Misdemeanors are classified differently in different states. The severity of the punishment imposed depends upon which class a misdemeanor falls in. The general pattern among most states is a provision for two classes of misdemeanors, either 1 and 2, or A and B. Class A offences are considered more serious than Class B ones, inviting higher fines and longer terms.
Thus the two main levels of misdemeanors according to federal law are:
- Class A Misdemeanors: On committing a Class A misdemeanor the individual will face a jail term of up to one year. This term will be served in a county jail. The individual will also have to pay fines amounting to a sum less than $4000. Some examples of Class A misdemeanors are a second DUI Charge, an assault charge, the theft of a vehicle as well as the possession of an illegal weapon. Class A misdemeanors are not expunged easily.
- Class B Misdemeanors: The punishment is not as severe as a Class A misdemeanor. It includes a confinement term of a year or less, as well as fines that do not exceed $ 2000. A first-time DUI offended, a criminal trespasser, a petty thief who steals amounts between $50 and $500 as well as a law breaker who evades arrest are all charged with a Class B misdemeanor
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