If you are facing criminal charges, you have the right to legal counsel. A Clermont criminal defense lawyer with Bogin, Munns & Munns can help you fight back against those charges and attempt to either reduce or eliminate the potential consequences you face.
While no attorney can guarantee an acquittal, our team will work tirelessly to give you the best defense possible. We can work to get your charges reduced or dismissed so you don’t have to face the personal, financial, and legal consequences of a conviction. We can also answer your questions throughout the legal process.
Felonies vs. Misdemeanors
Every criminal offense that carries the potential for incarceration is considered either a felony or a misdemeanor under state law. The distinction between these two types of offenses is important because one carries much steeper penalties than the other.
Of the two, felonies carry the steepest consequences. A conviction for a felony carries a maximum sentence of at least one year in state prison. In some cases, these offenses could lead to a lifetime of imprisonment. These sentences are overseen by the Florida State Department of Corrections.
Misdemeanors are different in that the maximum sentence is much lower. At most, a misdemeanor will result in no more than a year of incarceration. Unlike felonies, this time is served in a county jail as opposed to a state prison. The fines for a misdemeanor are also much lower. A person convicted of a misdemeanor in Clermont will typically serve their sentence in the Lake County Detention Center.
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Statutory Penalties for a Criminal Conviction
There are different consequences that come with a criminal conviction. Each offense varies by its degree of severity, and there is a wide range of potential penalties that can apply.
The primary concern of most people facing criminal charges is the prospect of incarceration. If you are convicted of a crime, you could face time behind bars in either the county jail or a state facility, depending on the severity of the crime. Some offenses carry mandatory minimums, making it impossible to avoid incarceration upon conviction.
Fines are also a big part of criminal convictions. Fines are monetary debts paid to the state by the defendant, and there are other consequences that could come with the failure to make these payments. These fines could be in the tens of thousands of dollars in some cases.
Restitution is also a possibility. Restitution is a court-ordered payment from a defendant directly to the alleged victim of a crime. These payments are only made when the alleged victim suffers some sort of economic damage during the offense. This could include property damage from a car accident or medical bills following an injury.
There are also consequences for a conviction that do not directly stem from the statute itself. These are commonly referred to as collateral consequences.
Collateral consequences are especially damaging following a felony conviction. A convicted felon will lose many of their constitutional rights, including the right to vote or own a firearm.
Collateral consequences can also simply make life harder for a person convicted of a crime. Employers have the right to fire employees based on their criminal history, and landlords can reject rental applications for the same reason. Criminal convictions could also complicate immigration proceedings or child custody disputes. The best way to avoid these collateral consequences is to defeat the criminal charges you are facing.
Aside from fines and sentences, convictions can have devastating effects on your personal life. Family members, community members, and colleagues may distance themselves from you, for example. You may find it difficult to get a job or enroll in school, as well.
If you are facing charges, take your defense seriously so you can protect your relationships and career.
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Types of Criminal Cases Our Firm Handles
The team at Bogin, Munns & Munns understands criminal defense law. Our lawyers in Clermont are prepared to advocate for you during any time of criminal charge and are dedicated to ensuring your rights are protected throughout the process. Some of the criminal offenses we commonly handle include:
Some of the most harshly punished criminal offenses involve acts of violence. Violent crimes could be either a misdemeanor or a felony, depending on the severity of the injury. For example, an assault case might be a misdemeanor, while murder is always treated as a felony.
Drug crimes are some of the most commonly charged offenses under state law. The vast majority of drug crimes are felonies, and most of them carry steep penalties upon conviction. It is unlawful to possess, sell, distribute, or manufacture any controlled substance.
While Florida residents have a right to bear arms, there are strict laws regarding the purchase, sale, use, and possession of firearms. Some individuals—including convicted felons—do not have the right to possess firearms at all. In other cases, a person with the right to own a firearm could face criminal charges for bringing one into a protected space, like a school or government building.
Not all criminal acts involve violence or drugs. Financial crimes can occur under the guise of routine transactions. Typically, these offenses involve allegations of fraud. A financial crime could occur between strangers, but they are often perpetrated by individuals in a position of trust. Financial crimes also involve avoiding both state and federal tax obligations.
Sex crimes carry some of the strictest penalties under the law. In addition to jail time and fines, a conviction could also result in mandatory sex offender registration. Sex crimes vary from acts of voyeurism to sexual assault. Prosecutors are known for aggressively pursuing these cases even when the evidence is underwhelming.
Discuss Your Defense Options with Us
The stress and worry that can come with a criminal charge are often palpable. This is true whether you have dealt with law enforcement before or if you are facing criminal charges for the first time. Our firm will review the facts of your case and help you develop the best approach to fighting back against these charges.
If you are ready to pursue a defense, let the criminal defense lawyers at Bogin, Munns, & Munns help. Before you enter a plea or discuss your case with the prosecutor, call our Clermont office today.