Florida Felony Classifications

A felony is a crime that is punishable by more than one year imprisonment. Generally, should a crime call for less than one year imprisonment, it will be classified as a misdemeanor.

Some crimes in Florida are classified as “noncriminal violations”. Noncriminal violations are punishable by a fine, forfeiture or civil remedy – not jail time.


Punishment for a felony can range between one year of jail/ prison to the death penalty, depending on the felony and degree of the felony.
There are five degrees for felony offenses: Felony in the third degree, felony in the second degree, felony in the first degree, life felony and capital felony.

Felonies are classified based on the maximum punishment allowed by law.

Felony in the Third Degree

Felonies in the third degree = no more than five years imprisonment, and a fine of up to five thousand dollars. Note that you can also be ordered to pay restitution (payment) to the victim.

Examples of third degree felonies; Aggravated Assault, Possession of a Controlled Substance, Carrying a Concealed Weapon

Felony in the Second Degree

Felonies in the second degree = no more than fifteen years imprisonment, and a fine of up to ten thousand dollars. Restitution to the victim may also be ordered.

Examples of Second Degree Felonies; Aggravated Battery, Robbery

Felony in the First Degree

Felonies in the first degree = no more than thirty years imprisonment, and fines of up to ten thousand dollars. Restitution to the victim may also be ordered.

Examples of First Degree Felonies; Drug Trafficking, 1st Degree Felony Robbery

Life Felony

Life felony = forty years to life imprisonment, with fines of up to fifteen thousand dollars. Again, restitution may be ordered for the victim.

Capital Felony

Capital felony = death or life imprisonment without the possibility of parole. Restitution for the victim may also be ordered.

Example of Capital Felony; Murder


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