Misdemeanors in Florida
In Florida, a misdemeanor is a crime punishable by not more than one year in jail, and (in most cases) a maximum fine of $1,000.00. Considered less serious than felonies, misdemeanors are handled at the county court level. They are punishable by a fine, probation, and/or imprisonment in the county jail, as opposed to a state prison sentence on a felony charge. Under the Florida Rules of Criminal Procedure, depositions are generally not permitted in misdemeanor cases, absent a showing of good cause. Further, the Florida Punishment Code and the sentencing guidelines don’t apply to misdemeanors.
Misdemeanor offenses include worthless checks, prostitution, petit theft, driving under the Influence, possession of marijuana, possession of paraphernalia, resisting arrest without violence, battery, domestic violence, and assault.
Some Common Florida Misdemeanors
Driving on a Suspended License
Driving Under the Influence
Possession of Marijuana
Assault & Battery
Resisting Arrest Without Violence
Petit Theft/Retail Theft
"In Florida, a misdemeanor is a crime punishable by not more than one year in jail, and a maximum fine of $1,000.00."
Unlike felony convictions, a misdemeanor conviction won’t result in the loss of a person’s civil rights—their right to vote and their right to own and possess firearms, among others. This isn’t to say that a misdemeanor conviction carries no consequences at all. Or to say that the consequences are negligible. A misdemeanor conviction can and will appear on your record, and may very well impact your employment opportunities, cause problems with securing housing, gaining attendance at a university, and even cause a hike in certain insurance rates. Further, if you are not a United States Citizen, in some cases you can be deported because of a misdemeanor conviction. If you are facing a misdemeanor, it is certainly a good idea to seek the advice of an experienced criminal attorney. If you or a loved one have been charged with a misdemeanor offense in Florida, contact the Law Office of William B. Wynne for a free consultation.