Felonies are the most serious type of criminal offense. Felonies typically involve serious physical harm (or threat of harm) to victims, but felony offenses also include white collar crimes and fraud schemes. Offenses that otherwise are misdemeanors can be elevated to felonies for second-time offenders. Punishment for felonies ranges from imprisonment in prison for one year to life in prison without parole, and felonies like murder may even be punished by imposition of the death penalty. As with misdemeanors, states may also subdivide felonies by class or by degree. Felonies such as murder, rape, arson and kidnapping are substantially more serious and all carry jail times of at least one year and in most cases, substantially greater terms of incarceration. At the most severe level of felony classification, Class A, the maximum penalty can be life in prison without parole or the death penalty.
Felony crimes are usually classified in contrast with misdemeanor crimes. Misdemeanors are less serious crimes that usually result in a small fine and/or jail time of less than one year in a jail facility rather than a prison facility. Thus the question of what is a felony usually revolves around the length of imprisonment that may result from the commission of a crime. Understanding how felony laws work can sometimes be difficult. If you are facing felony charges or have been subject to a felony arrest, you have the right to a competent criminal lawyer. A qualified criminal attorney at Law Offices of Neil Weissman will be able to explain the felony laws in your area, which might be different from region to region. Also, our attorney can help explain your options to you, such as a reduced or dropped sentence, as well as details regarding felony.