Felony and Misdemeanor Charges in Florida

Crimes are classified as either Misdemeanors or Felonies, with Felonies being more serious than Misdemeanors. The main difference between the two in terms of punishment is that with a Misdemeanor, you can’t be incarcerated for more than a year. The prosecutor can’t send you to prison for a Misdemeanor, but you can be incarcerated in the county jail.

Misdemeanors

Misdemeanors are classified into two types: 1st Degree and 2nd Degree. A 2nd Degree misdemeanor means the punishment cannot exceed 60 days in Jail and a $500 fine. A 1st Degree Misdemeanor means the punishment cannot exceed 1 year in jail and a $1,000 dollar fine.

Felonies

Felonies are classified into 3 types: First Degree, 2nd Degree, and 3rd Degree. A Third Degree felony means the punishment cannot not exceed 5 years in the Department of Corrections and a $1,000 fine. A Second Degree felony means that the punishment cannot exceed 15 years in the Department of Corrections and a $5,000 fine. A First Degree felony means that the punishment cannot exceed 30 years in the Department of Corrections except when the statute applies a life sentence and a $10,000 dollar fine. A Life Felony means a punishment of life in prison and a $15,000 dollar fine, and a Capital Felony means death or life in prison without the possibility of parole.

Please note that certain changes to the aforementioned punishments apply under certain applicable statutes.