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Penalties for misdemeanors no laughing matter

Getting arrested on a misdemeanor charge may not seem so bad; however, it can lead to a smear on your record and could prevent you from getting any job that requires a level two background screening. A misdemeanor is a less serious charge than a felony and is more serious than an infraction of the law.

You could have to pay a fine, spend time in jail or both if you aren't well represented. You don't want that to happen, so trusting a legal representative is important. The best advice that you can follow is to be polite to the authorities, say nothing and request an attorney. This person will guide you and will advise you on what needs to be done. He or she will research your case and the chain of evidence to see if it is strong or weak.

Misdemeanors fall into three classes: high or gross misdemeanors, ordinary misdemeanors and petty misdemeanors. Petty misdemeanors usually see you having a jail term of less than six months and a fine of $500 or less. It goes without saying that, as the class of misdemeanors goes up, so does the punishment.

Louisiana defines a gross misdemeanor as any crime that is not a felony or a misdemeanor. In Louisiana, the definition goes crime by crime. Each type of crime is classified and has a penalty attached to it.

If you are charged with a misdemeanor, you may want to look at the laws of the state of Louisiana and talk to someone who has experience in this matter.

Source: FindLaw, "Misdemeanors," accessed Dec. 07, 2015

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