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Criminal Penalties in Indiana

Indiana law provides for two levels of crime each with different penalties, misdemeanors (lower level crimes) and felonies (higher level crimes).

Indiana Criminal Penalties

Misdemeanor Penalties

I’ve been charged with a misdemeanor, will I go to jail for a misdemeanor, will I get probation for a misdemeanor, I’ve been arrested for a misdemeanor what happens next, what kinds of penalties do I face for a misdemeanor, and what is the maximum penalty for a misdemeanor. As a criminal attorney in Indianapolis, my office is asked these are the types of questions on a regular basis.

First of all, let me explain the main distinction between a felony and a misdemeanor. In Indiana executed time for a felony is served at a state prison, whereas time served for misdemeanors in Indiana takes place at the local county jail. Indiana has three levels of misdemeanors. Let’s examine some of the differences.

Class C misdemeanor

The lowest level misdemeanor under Indiana law. Indiana Code 35-50-3-4 defines the possible sentence for Class “C” misdemeanor as 0 to 60 days in jail with a maximum fine of $500.00.

Class B misdemeanor

The mid-level misdemeanor under Indiana law. Indiana Code 35-50-3-3 defines the possible sentence for Class “B” misdemeanor as 0 to 180 days in jail with a maximum fine of $1,000.00.

Class A misdemeanor

The highest level (most serious) misdemeanor under Indiana law. Indiana Code 35-50-3-2 defines the possible sentence for Class “A” misdemeanor as 0 to 365 days in jail with a maximum fine of $5,000.00.

Indiana Felony Penalties

Just like the questions my office receives about misdemeanors, we also get a lot of questions about felony charges. I’ve been charged with a felony, will I go to jail for a felony, will I get probation for a felony, I’ve been arrested for a felony what happens next, what kinds of penalties do I face for a felony, and what is the maximum penalty for a felony are just a few we regularly hear.

Felony charges are more serious than misdemeanors and so are the possible consequences for a felony conviction. In July 2014, Indiana felony changed to a six levels. As the levels increase so do the potential penalties.

Level 6 Felony

The lowest level (least serious) felony under Indiana criminal law. Indiana Code 35-50-2-7(b) defines the possible sentence for Level 6 felony as between six months to two years and one-half (2 1/2 ) years, in the Indiana Department of Corrections, with the advisory sentence being one (1) year. In addition, the person may be fined not more than ten thousand dollars ($10,000).

Level 5 Felony

A Level 5 Felony is the next level felony under Indiana criminal law. Indiana Code 35-50-2-7(b) defines the possible sentence for Level 5 felony as between one (1) and six (6) years, in the Indiana Department of Corrections, with the advisory sentence being three (3) years. In addition, the person may be fined not more than ten thousand dollars ($10,000).

Level 4 Felony

A Level 4 Felony is the next level felony under Indiana criminal law. Indiana Code 35-50-2-5.5 defines the possible sentence for Level 4 felony as between two (2) and twelve (12) years, in the Indiana Department of Corrections, with the advisory sentence being six (6) years. In addition, the person may be fined not more than ten thousand dollars ($10,000).

Level 3 Felony

A Level 3 Felony the next level felony under Indiana criminal law. Indiana Code 35-50-2-5(b) defines the possible sentence for Level 3 felony as between three (3) and sixteen (16) years, in the Indiana Department of Corrections, with the advisory sentence being nine (9) years. In addition, the person may be fined not more than ten thousand dollars ($10,000).

Level 2 Felony

A Level 2 Felony the next level felony under Indiana criminal law. Indiana Code 35-50-2-4.5 defines the possible sentence for Level 2 felony as between ten (10) and thirty (30) years, in the Indiana Department of Corrections, with the advisory sentence being seventeen and one-half (17.5) years. In addition, the person may be fined not more than ten thousand dollars ($10,000).

Level 1 Felony

A Level 1 Felony is the next level felony under Indiana criminal law. Indiana Code 35-50-2-4 defines the possible sentence for Level 1 felony as between twenty (20) and forty (40) years, in the Indiana Department of Corrections, with the advisory sentence being thirty (30) years. In addition, the person may be fined not more than ten thousand dollars ($10,000).

Murder

Murder is the most serious felony under Indiana criminal law. Indiana Code 35-50-2-3 defines the possible sentence for felony murder as between forty-five (45) and sixty-five (65) years, in the Indiana Department of Corrections, with the advisory sentence being fifty-five (55) years. In addition, the person may be fined not more than ten thousand dollars ($10,000).

How much time will I do? Well, that depends. Have you been convicted before? Have you been convicted of the same crime? Is this the first criminal charge you are facing? These are called mitigating and aggravating factors and together with the particulars of your case they will affect what kind of sentence, if convicted, you will face. Call today to speak with one of our attorneys and learn more about your options.


We offer a wide variety of services outside of criminal law. Our services include family law, personal injury law, and criminal law. Click here if you need a divorce lawyer in Carmel, IN.

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Criminal Penalties in Indiana

From Felonies to Misdemeanors we will explain the possible legal consequences associated with each criminal charge.

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