Misdemeanor Sentencing Guidelines in Illinois

Published: Aug 11, 2017, by admin in Criminal Defense, Legal Blog

Misdemeanors are crimes for which the maximum punishment is no more than one year in jail. Additionally, misdemeanor sentencing guidelines in Illinois often require a crime to be punished by a large fine and probation as well. While misdemeanors are not as serious as felonies, it’s important that you do not take a misdemeanor charge lightly. Misdemeanors can result in a criminal record that can affect your life for years to come. It’s important that you seek a skilled Chicago misdemeanor attorney if you are facing misdemeanor charges.

In order to discuss your criminal charges with an experienced Chicago criminal defense attorney, contact us at O’Meara Law LLC as soon as possible. Call us today at 312-909-0706.

The Different Misdemeanors in Illinois

Illinois has three different degrees of misdemeanor charges and each have their own maximum punishments that you can face if found guilty. Any jail time or fines that you receive will be determined by the court at the end of your criminal proceeding. The three different classes of misdemeanors and their penalties are:

  • Class A Misdemeanor – This is the most serious type of misdemeanor, and if you are found guilty of one of these crimes you can spend up to one year in jail and have a fine of up to $2,500. Examples of Class A misdemeanors would include certain prostitution crimes, DUI, and illegal possession of firearms.
  • Class B Misdemeanor – These misdemeanors are considered less serious, and you can face up to six months in jail and a fine of $1,500 if found guilty. Class B misdemeanors include harassment and possession of two and a half to ten grams of marijuana.
  • Class C Misdemeanor – Being the least serious of misdemeanors, these can result in up to 30 days in jail and a fine of up to $1,500. Class C misdemeanors include possession of less than two and a half grams of marijuana and simple assault.

Additionally, you may also be sentenced for up to two years of probation if you are found guilty of a misdemeanor, and probation for a Class A misdemeanor requires formal supervision.

Your sentence after being convicted of a misdemeanor does not necessarily have to be the maximum allowed under law, and a judge will consider a variety of factors before handing down a particular sentence in your case. Your defense lawyer will work with the prosecution and judge in order to make sure that you receive the most reasonable sentence in the event that you are found guilty of a misdemeanor.

Illinois Statute of Limitations Can Affect Your Misdemeanor Sentencing

The statute of limitations law prohibits charges from commencing against you if a certain amount of time has already passed from the time of the crime. This statute of limitations period is 18 months for misdemeanors in Illinois. While this 18 month period will apply for most misdemeanors, there may be exceptions in your case. The statute of limitations does not run during certain times such as:

  • When a witness is on military duty
  • During times when the defendant is not a resident within the state
  • When another criminal proceeding is pending against the defendant
  • In charges of misdemeanor criminal sexual abuse of a minor, the statute of limitations is 10 years beginning when the victim turns 18

O’Meara Law LLC Can Help If You Are Charged With A Misdemeanor

The misdemeanor arrest and legal process can be complicated for anyone. With serious punishment possible upon conviction, it is important that you have a skilled defense attorney working for you. Our office has years of experience helping defend clients, and we can help defend you from jail time, a large fine, and a permanent criminal record.

In order to speak with a defense attorney about your case, contact us at O’Meara Law LLC today. Call us at 312-909-0706.