Misdemeanor Versus Felony: Do You Know The Difference?

Most people in the state of Virginia understand that the penalties for felony convictions are much more stringent than they are for misdemeanors. But how much? What even classifies as a misdemeanor or felony in Virginia?

Let's take a look.

Types Of Misdemeanors In Virginia

In the Commonwealth of Virginia, there are many different misdemeanors and each fall under one of four different classifications. A handful of misdemeanors include:

Which penalties you face will depend on which class your offense is listed under. You could serve up to 12 months in jail, and/or a fine of up to $2500 if your misdemeanor is considered a class I offense.

Felonies In Virginia

Just like misdemeanors, the commonwealth categorizes felonies as well. There are six different classes of felonies in Virginia. Some felony offenses include:

  • Drug possession and distribution
  • Grand larceny
  • Assault with a deadly weapon

Every felony in Virginia carries some sort of jail or prison time; how much will depend on the circumstance. If you are convicted of a class 1 felony, you could face a life sentence or even the death penalty.

The Importance Of Hiring A Lawyer No Matter How Minor The Charge

Understanding the differences in the types of misdemeanors and felonies is important but recognizing the potential repercussions far beyond what the statute implies is equally crucial.

A conviction -- even an arrest -- will become part of your permanent criminal record which can negatively impact your life in ways you may not realize, such as the ability to gain employment or housing, possess a firearm, receive public benefits and even vote.

Getting an experienced criminal defense attorney who can advocate for you is key.

From Bench Trials To Jury Trials - I Have Done It All

I am criminal defense attorney Will Clemons, and I have both prosecuted and defended numerous criminal cases spanning over a decade. I was an Assistant Commonwealth's Attorney at the Roanoke City Commonwealth's Attorney Office and then an Assistant Public Defender at the Pulaski Public Defender's Office.

I know both sides of the law and can offer the support you need.

Free Consultations. Jail Visits. 540-251-1943.

If you have been arrested or charged with any type of traffic infraction or criminal offense in Christiansburg or Montgomery County, Virginia, contact my office.

You can also reach me online.