A felony is considered one of the most serious crimes that can be accompanied by multiple years in prison with or without the possibility of parole. Felonies not only come with possible jail time and fines, but it can also come with employment difficulties. Felony convictions can happen to anyone, but the best thing is to know your rights and what to do if you are charged with and/or convicted.
Each state is different when it comes to felonies. What may be a felony in one state may not be in another so the first item of business is to contact a well versed criminal defense attorney to find out and understand your rights. Typically, felonies are more serious crimes such as murder, rape, arson, assault and better, grand theft, etc.
Felonies convictions can come with years in prison and/or large fines. Beyond these punishments, the courts may also require restitution payments to the victim or the victims family. If the crime is serious enough and the state allows, then there could also be the additional potential of the death penalty.
Reduction of Punishment
There are many factors that weigh in on a felony conviction such as if the convicted was a first-time offender, the extent of the crime, or general criminal history. These factors are why it is not only important to have a criminal defense attorney, but also disclose any pertinent information to your attorney that may help your case.
Probation is the suspension of jail time, but this does not mean you are free from punishment. Probation usually includes multiple conditions that much be met in order to meet probation requirements and stay out of jail. These conditions may be regular and involved counseling, maintaining employment, and/or other housing requirements.
if you have been sentenced to prison time for a felony conviction you may be considered for a conditional release before the entire felony sentence has been served. Parole can be similar to probation, but it is very different because a parolee must typically check-in with a parole officer on a regular basis as well as meet many of the requirements set forth for someone on probation.
If you are convicted of a felony you may appeal to a higher court, but this can be a challenge. It will be the obligation of you and your criminal defense attorney to show that a mistake was made in the judicial process during the original trial proceedings. Each case is different and the best option for filing an appeal is to discuss your case with a well versed criminal defense attorney.
Expunging Your Record
Expungement is when a criminal record is destroyed. A felony can stay on your record forever and this can have life-long consequences, which is why some convicted felons choose to have their criminal records expunged. This can be a difficult and lengthy process and can vary from state-to-state.