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Misdemeanor vs. Felony in WI

There are a number of classifications between various categories and crimes that may determine whether an individual should be convicted of a misdemeanor or a felony. When it comes to the differences between state convictions, there are few, however, Wisconsin takes incarceration time and housing location into account when sentencing someone. To become more aware of the consequences between the two and what to expect in either situation, we’ve broken things down into Felonies and Misdemeanors in Wisconsin.


According to Wisconsin law, a felony is the result of a crime that has a maximum penalty of at least one year in prison. This term will be held in the Wisconsin State Prison System rather than a county jail on account of the severity of the crime. While a felony is a broad term, there are nine divisions within this classification that contribute to the sentencing and location determined. These divisions are broken down into letter classes “A” through “I” in which “A” would be the most severe with life in prison, followed by 60 years all the way down to a fine with a mere 3 and a half years. If a felon is a repeat offender, contact a Hart Law attorney for help deeming what the penalty will likely result in.


Of the two convictions, a misdemeanor is a less punishable offense. To be sentenced under a misdemeanor crime will leave you with time served in a county jail rather than a prison. To be classified as a misdemeanor, an individual will fall into one of three categories: Class A, B, or C. The difference between the three classes lies in the severity of the crime committed. Class A will result in the largest fine along with potential imprisonment up to nine months. Class B is a little more lenient with a smaller fine and potential jail time of up to ninety days. Finally, Class C comes with the most minimal punishment. This class will leave the convicted individual with a much smaller fine or up to thirty days in jail, or both.

Depending on the nature of the conviction, it’s important to note that there may be additional consequences that aren’t as apparent. There is also one big difference between convicting a felony vs. a misdemeanor—the right to vote, hold office, and carry second amendment rights. If you find yourself in a position where you need legal advice on how to move forward with a conviction, contact Hart Law.

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