New Jersey Disorderly Persons Offense Lawyer
A misdemeanor in NJ is referred to as a disorderly persons offense and it’s similar to the classification of a misdemeanor in other states. If it’s your first time facing an arrest, or if you happen to be from another state, it’s easy to be initially confused by the legal terminology that New Jersey uses when referring to criminal charges.
Many people are aware of terms like “felony” or “misdemeanor”, mainly because those are the common classifications of crimes in other states and what you hear on the news, films, or TV. However, felonies and misdemeanors in NJ have different names, and while many people use them interchangeably, it’s important to understand what equates to misdemeanors in NJ. On this page, you’ll find valuable information on what misdemeanors are in NJ and how a misdemeanor attorney or disorderly persons offense attorney can help.
Frequently Asked Questions About Misdemeanors in NJ
If you’ve been charged with a disorderly persons offense (misdemeanor), it can be very helpful to learn more about your potential penalties, different types of misdemeanor charges, and how a strong misdemeanor defense plan can help you move on from this legal hurdle.
What is a misdemeanor charge in NJ?
A misdemeanor charge in New Jersey, legally referred to as a disorderly persons offense, is considered a lower-level offense when compared to a felony (indictable offense in NJ). A disorderly persons offense, however, is a more serious crime than a petty disorderly persons offense. Examples of a petty disorderly persons offense are disorderly conduct, public lewdness, or small amounts of marijuana possession. Misdemeanors in NJ can lead to serious consequences and even time in jail, so these crimes are not something to take lightly. If you’ve been charged with a disorderly persons offense (misdemeanor in NJ), it’s important to contact a misdemeanor defense lawyer as soon as possible.
What are examples of misdemeanors?
In New Jersey, examples of misdemeanor level crimes include:
- Drug possession
- Simple assault
- Resisting arrest
These are just a few of some of the most common disorderly persons offenses that take place in New Jersey. Regardless of the specifics of your misdemeanor level charges, it’s important to contact an experienced NJ misdemeanor attorney as soon as possible to discuss your charges.
What are the penalties for misdemeanors in NJ?
The penalties for misdemeanors (disorderly persons offenses) in NJ can result in up to 6 months in jail and $1000 in fines. The penalties for a petty disorderly persons offense can lead to 30 days in jail and $500 in fines. Working with a misdemeanor attorney can help to reduce these penalties and or possibly even have charges dropped.
What does a disorderly conduct charge mean?
Disorderly conduct is a common lower level charge in New Jersey. Because it’s a common charge, many people believe that disorderly conduct is its own criminal classification, much like a misdemeanor or felony, but it actually refers to a specific charge stemming from a specific behavior. Generally speaking, disorderly conduct is improper behavior in public. This could be in the form of public intoxication, fighting in a public setting, using vulgar language, or failing to follow the instructions of a police officer. Getting into a fight in a public setting can lead to a disorderly conduct charge. A disorderly conduct charge is classified as a petty disorderly persons offense. Even though it’s considered a lower level charge, it can still lead to heavy fines and jail time. Some will mistakenly plead guilty to a disorderly conduct charge, believing that it won’t appear on a criminal record. However, if you are arrested and charged with disorderly conduct, it will go on your record and be available to the public. It’s highly recommended to have a NJ misdemeanor lawyer handle your disorderly conduct case. More specifically, do not plead guilty to a disorderly conduct charge without contacting a misdemeanor attorney first.
Is it possible to have a misdemeanor charge expunged in New Jersey?
It is possible to have a misdemeanor charge expunged if you meet the requirements. You’ll have to file a petition to have a misdemeanor expunged, which is a multi-step process that involves collecting important records and filling out forms provided by the county courthouse. Because this process can be time-consuming and complex, you should hire a misdemeanor lawyer that specializes in expungement. A misdemeanor attorney in NJ can help you locate your records and file for expungement efficiently and effectively. Expungement can provide a lot of benefits to those who qualify. If you’ve been struggling to secure a job, sign a lease, or progress in other areas of life due to a misdemeanor conviction on your record, contact an experienced misdemeanor lawyer as soon as possible to learn more about the expungement procedures.
Do I need a New Jersey misdemeanor lawyer?
Yes -- in order to obtain the best possible outcome, it’s always recommended to hire a misdemeanor defense lawyer to assist you through this difficult time. It’s no surprise that the criminal justice system can be complicated, and in some cases, even biased and unfair. A criminal defense attorney that handles misdemeanor charges in NJ can guide you through each step of the process and fight for your best interest. John B. Fabriele, III has been fighting for the rights of those charged with misdemeanor offenses for decades and has the knowledge and experience to get you through this legal challenge. If you’re charged with a disorderly persons offense in NJ, contact misdemeanor defense attorney John B. Fabriele, III to discuss your case today.