Paralegal Essentials: Criminal Law (Felony vs. Misdemeanor)

In contrast to a civil law which involves a wrong against an individual or group of individuals, criminal law involves an offense against the entire society.   Crimes are essentially categorized into 2 broad classifications:

  • Felonies
  • Misdemeanors

The following are some of the key ways to identify which classification a crime will fall into:

  • Felonies
  1. Generally more serious crimes such as murder, rape, robbery, manslaughter, mayhem, arson
  2. The penalty for a felony may include imprisonment for a year or longer or even the death penalty in certain states
  • Misdemeanors
  1. Generally less serious crimes such as disturbing the peace, public intoxication, petty theft
  2. The penalty is usually punishment less than one year
Published in: on November 26, 2010 at 12:16 pm  Leave a Comment  
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