Criminal offenses are characterized depending on their severity and the penalties that may have been imposed upon them. A felony and a misdemeanor are both criminal offenses, however, they are differentiated by the severity of the crime.
The basic differences between a felony and a misdemeanor:
- A felony is a heinous crime.
A misdemeanor is a less serious offense.
- Felonies may require jail time as punishment, ranging from one year up to the maximum on the particular charge, in state prison.
Misdemeanors may be punishable by up to one year in county jail.
- Since a felony is a serious offense, it can leave a very long lasting impact on your criminal history. The consequences may include losing your right to vote if you’ve been convicted or losing your right to a firearm.
A misdemeanor is a minor offense, that remains on your criminal history and could affect you later in life. However, the impact is not as horrific as that of a felony.