Marin County Misdemeanor Attorney

What is a Misdemeanor Charge in California?

A misdemeanor criminal charge is generally considered to be less serious than a felony criminal charge and does not carry the risk of being sentenced to serve a long time in a state prison. It is important to note that California, in contrast to other states, does not specifically classify misdemeanors. Instead, the severity of a misdemeanor charge will be dictated by the punishment allowed for the criminal offense pursuant to state law.

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Common Misdemeanor Crimes

Below is a list of common types of misdemeanor criminal offenses in California:

  • Disorderly conduct
  • Driving Under the Influence (DUI)
  • Domestic battery
  • Drug possession
  • Indecent exposure
  • Petty theft
  • Public intoxication
  • Reckless driving
  • Sexual battery
  • Shoplifting
  • Simple assault
  • Trespassing
  • Vandalism

When searching for legal counsel, make sure to retain the services of an experienced and knowledgeable misdemeanor offense lawyer who is deeply familiar with the California criminal code and relevant state laws. 

What is the Difference Between a Felony and a Misdemeanor?

The biggest difference between a felony and a misdemeanor in California is the severity of the offense and the potential punishment, if convicted. For example, a felony criminal conviction may be punishable by the death penalty, imprisonment in state prison, or imprisonment in a county jail under the provisions. A misdemeanor crime, if convicted, typically carries a maximum sentence of no longer than six months in a county jail and/or a monetary fine up to $1,000.


Prison Sentences and Penalties for Misdemeanors in Marin County

In Marin County, as mentioned, the maximum punishment for a misdemeanor criminal violation is generally not more than six months to a year in a county jail, a fine not to exceed $1,000, or both.

Understanding the Consequences of a Misdemeanor Conviction on Your Record

Getting convicted of a misdemeanor crime is serious and can have long-term ramifications on your life. For example, having a misdemeanor conviction on your criminal record can adversely impact your professional options, educational options, and harm your reputation and personal relationships.

Navigating Marin County Court for a Misdemeanor Charge

If you are charged with a misdemeanor offense in Marin County, it is important to hire a misdemeanor lawyer who knows how to effectively navigate the Marin County Court system. This is why it makes sense to hire The Law Offices of Kevin Heaney. Put Kevin’s years of experience in handling misdemeanor cases throughout Marin County to work for you.


Frequently Asked Questions When Charged with a Misdemeanor

  • What Happens If A Plea Deal Is Not Made At Pre-Trial Hearing?

    At the pre-trial conference, your Marin County misdemeanor lawyer will discuss your case with the judge and district attorney. If a plea offer was made by the district attorney, it will be conveyed to the judge. If a plea deal cannot be reached at the pre-trial conference, the matter will be set for a further settlement conference, motion hearing, or jury trial.

    A trial in a misdemeanor case, according to California law, must be held within thirty days of your arraignment if you are in custody and within forty-five days of your arraignment if you are out of custody, unless you decide to waive your right to a speedy trial.

  • What Happens If I Plead Guilty At Arraignment?

    If you decide to plead guilty, or are convicted at trial, then sentencing will typically commence right away. However, you do have a right to delayed sentencing and the opportunity to present facts through your Marin County misdemeanor lawyer. The judge assigned to your misdemeanor case will ultimately decide the scope of your sentence within the limits of applicable state law.

    Generally, a misdemeanor conviction can result in probation, fines and/or county jail time up to six months.

  • Do I Have To Appear In Court For The Arraignment?

    Under California law, you have a legal right to have an attorney appear in court on your behalf on a misdemeanor case and you may never have to appear in court yourself.

  • Is The Defendant Required To Be Present At Pre-Trial Hearing?

    For misdemeanor charges, a defendant is not legally obligated to be present at a pre-trial hearing. For example, at the first appearance (i.e., the arraignment), your Marin County misdemeanor attorney can enter a plea of not guilty on your behalf.

  • What is the process if you’re cited for a misdemeanor?

    If you are cited for a misdemeanor offense, it is important to understand your legal rights. For example, you have a right to a speedy trial, which basically means a trial can be set within 45 days rather than the normal process which takes a lot longer. You also have the right to an attorney. Nevertheless, many Marin County residents opt to simply pay their tickets.

    If you decide to challenge the ticket for a misdemeanor offense, the court process typically commences with an arraignment, at which time you will be formally advised of the charges and you (or your Marin County misdemeanor attorney) will need to enter a plea of not guilty. The case will then either be set for a trial.

Hire a Marin County Felony Defense Attorney Today

If you are in need of a Marin County felony defense attorney, contact the Law Offices of Kevin Heaney. Our legal team stands ready to help you during this difficult time and are dedicated to your legal needs. We take pride in our exceptional client service, including being responsive and available when you need legal counsel. To learn more, reach out to schedule a no-cost, confidential case evaluation.

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Here’s what clients had to say about Kevin Heaney’s work
Kevin did an amazing job. He turned a nightmare into a really manageable situation. Without going into detail, I was facing some complications due to my record that would have made for a lengthy and grand problem. He was able to get it mitigated and really came away amazing, compared to where we started. Worth every penny and more. I feel that the work he did was more than commensurate for what he charged me. I will use him in the future and I would recommend him to family and friends.
Amazing honest and efficient lawyer! Kevin knows the ins and outs of the criminal system. He is the definitely the guy to have on your side. I won’t go into the details of the case, but my brother got involve in a domestic violent situation and we needed a good Marin lawyer that wouldn’t charge an arm and a leg to take his case. I was referred to Kevin by a friend of mine. I noticed on the initial phone consultation that he really wanted to help. We were able to work out a very reasonable price for the handling of the case, so we hired him. Kevin worked hard since day one, and he got my bro a very good deal with the DA. Our family is thankful to have hired him.
I contacted Kevin when I needed legal representation in a case which I felt required a high level of client service and representation. He was always right there for me when I needed him, whether it was showing up early for hearings, to the individualized attention I received at the courthouse, and having private meetings in his office anytime, as often as needed without any rescheduling. Kevin approached my case with care and made me feel comfortable as he took the time to thoroughly review my case history, explain my options to me, and was readily available and responsive when I had questions or just needed to talk to him. He treated my case with genuine care and attention it deserved and my case results certainly reflected his strong personal and professional attributes. I wouldn’t hesitate to contact Kevin again if the need arises.
I received the best possible outcome by giving my case to Kevin Heaney. He fought for me the entire way until he got my case dismissed! I have never come across a lawyer that cares so much about his clients or what happens to them. His rates are very affordable and he is open to negotiate the numbers. It is clear that he wants to help. Kevin knows his stuff and he is on top of it. He is also very personable, kept me in the loop of things throughout the process and always returned my calls and emails. I am grateful and lucky to have found Kevin. He is a true professional and knows how to get it done.
I wanted to thank you for the excellent job you did on getting Luis Correa’s case dismissed. You were very efficient and with minimal stress to Mr Correa. He had full confidence in you and you made it very easy for him to put this case in your hands. The fact that he only had to meet with you a few times and only able to provide you with minimal information he had on his case was a blessing that you were able to get the case dismissed! You know your stuff! Thank you once again and Mr Correa is very pleased with the outcome and can get on with his life without this case over him.

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