The U.S. criminal systems across the country separate criminal activities into a few various categories based upon how serious the crimes committed are.
This classification including (infractions, misdemeanor, felony) will determine how the court system treats each case, so it is important to understand the differences.
What’s the difference between an Infraction, Felony and Misdemeanor?
As a rule of thumb, these violations or crimes are separated by the potential jail time (if any) a person could face.
When an individual breaks the law, they might face a wide variety of charges depending upon the nature of the offence and any other factors that may have a bearing on the charges, such as previous offenses.
Nevertheless, a very crucial factor that distinguishes the type criminal charges is whether they are classified as infractions, misdemeanors or felony crimes.
Infractions (sometimes called violations) are typically smaller petty offenses that are normally punishable by tickets or fines, but not jail time. The most common form of infractions are Traffic violations such as a speeding ticket.
Misdemeanors are generally considered to be less severe than felony crimes. The practical distinction between something that might be a Class A misdemeanor (the most severe level of misdemeanor crime) and a state jail felony (the least severe level of felony crime) under Texas law can be relatively small.
With that said, there are major differences between felony and misdemeanor charges that can significantly impact a person’s life.
Differences between Misdemeanors and Felonies
The following is a brief explanation of some of the key differences between misdemeanors and felonies:
Misdemeanors generally lead to a maximum sentence of a year or less in jail, whereas felonies can lead to life imprisonment or perhaps the death penalty in the State of Texas.
Felonies are considered a much more serious or violent crime such as (murder, rape, kidnapping, arson, embezzlement, theft of property, etc.) and offences range from Capital Felony to First Degree to Second-Degree to Third-Degree Felonies.
Felons typically lose vital civil liberties such as the right to bear arms or be eligible to register to vote compared to those who have had a misdemeanor conviction typically do not.
These are just some of the most critical differences between these classes of crime in Texas.
Regardless of whether you have been charged with a felony or a misdemeanor, Attorney Amanda Branan is fully prepared to help you fight for your rights under the law. Click HERE to email the Law Office of Amanda Branan, PLLC or call (972) 661-8330 today to receive a free initial consultation about your case.