Many people make the mistake of taking misdemeanors lightly because they do not bear the same heavy penalties of a felony. This mistake can be a very dangerous one considering the far-reaching impact a misdemeanor charge could have on one’s life and future. If not handled correctly, misdemeanor charges can block you from getting jobs and housing and even affect career growth.
If you or someone you know faces misdemeanor charges the best thing you can do is contact a Los Angeles defense attorney immediately. A skilled attorney has the power to help get the charges against you reduced, severely lessened, or even dropped with the right knowledge, experience, and approach.
When convicted of a misdemeanor crime, an individual attains a criminal record, which they will have to acknowledge every time they apply for schooling, a job, or housing in lieu of a background check. The penalties for misdemeanors vary greatly depending on the charges. One could be sentenced with up to a year of jail time and thousands of dollars in fines if not represented by the right attorney.
When discussing the consequences of a misdemeanor offense in Los Angeles, we have to look at both the statutory penalties as well as consequences that technically fall outside of the legal system, but nonetheless completely affect the person convicted.
California misdemeanors fall into two categories:
While these may be the statutory penalties associated with misdemeanors in Los Angeles, the reality is that any person who has been convicted of a misdemeanor can face several other consequences that can affect their life.
A misdemeanor conviction will result in a mark on a person’s criminal background. This can significantly affect their ability to gain employment, find adequate housing, or attend school. While this may not seem like such a big deal, the reality is that a misdemeanor can set a person back as they are working to move forward with their life. These setbacks can have a cascading effect, and they often lead a person back into a life of crime because of a lack of other opportunities to earn an income.
There are various crimes in California that are considered “wobbler” offenses. When a particular crime is considered a wobbler, this means that prosecutors can choose to charge it as either a misdemeanor or felony offense. When a prosecutor is making a decision about whether or not to charge someone with a misdemeanor or felony for a wobbler, they will look at various facts surrounding the specific crime as well as the person’s criminal background.
Wobbler offenses in Los Angeles are a perfect example of why any person charged with a crime needs assistance from a criminal defense attorney. An attorney will be able to get involved quickly and open communications with the prosecutor in an attempt to secure the least severe possible charges. If the scales are tipped towards a prosecutor filing a wobbler as a felony as opposed to a misdemeanor, this could have detrimental consequences on the person who allegedly committed the crime. An attorney could get involved and argue that the nature of the crime or the person’s criminal background does not warrant a felony charge.
At Okabe & Haushalter we realize just how serious a misdemeanor charge really is and devote our full time and energy to making sure you are not burdened with a lifetime of potential shame and humiliation. Our experienced and informed attorneys will review your situation, give you advice, and devise a strategy so you will walk out of court with the best possible outcome.
Our firm has helped many faces the following charges with positive results: DUI, drug crimes, drug possession, domestic violence, probation violations, and juvenile crimes as well as many other misdemeanor charges. No matter what type of misdemeanor charge an individual is facing, a criminal defense attorney can help by reviewing your case immediately.
Contact a Los Angeles Misdemeanor Defense Attorney today and avoid the damaging effects of a criminal record.