What does 'level' mean in criminal charge?

Asked over 3 years ago - Fort Walton Beach, FL

A person I know was charged with Battery and his booking info reads:

784.03.1a1 CASE0001 BATTERY F M $0.00

Additional information

I know the degree is "Felony" btw, I just don't understand what "level" is

Attorney answers (2)

  1. David James Oberliesen

    Contributor Level 6

    Answered . In Florida, criminal offenses are first broken down into felony or misdemeanor and subsequently divided into degrees. The main difference is maximum punishment.

    Maximum punishments for crimes are as follows:
    2nd degree misdemeanor - 60 days in jail
    First degree misdemeanor - 1 year in jail
    3rd degree felony- 5 years in prison
    2nd degree felony - 15 years in prison
    1st degree felony - 30 years in prison
    Life felony - life in prison
    Capital felony - death penatly

    In addition to the degree of felony, each felony offense also has a level for sentencing purposes, ranging from 1-10. Felony charges of the same degree may have different levels. For example, grand theft ($300-$5,000) and DUI w/ Serious Bodily Injury are both 3rd degree felonies, but grand theft is a level 2 and DUI w/ Serious Bodily Injury is a level 7. As a general rule of thumb, the charge with the higher level will face a potentially higher minimum sentence, but they have they same maximum.

    Also, please note that other factors such as a person's previous criminal history, recent release from prison, and use or possession of a firearm during the commission of a felony can change the degree or levels of a felony and both their minimum and maximum sentences. The sentencing laws and guidelines can be very confusing and must be analyzed in detail on a case-by-case basis.

    As to the information your provided, it appears that someone has been charged with simple battery, a first degree misdemeanor. This is indicated by the DEGREE - F (first) and LEVEL M (misdemeanor). As charged, that person could be punished by up to a year in county jail or probation. This person should consult with an experienced criminal defense attorney to evaluate the issues in his or her case.

  2. Rohn Conan Barrow

    Contributor Level 14

    Answered . No, I would say level is misdemeanor or felony. Degree would be things like 1st, 2nd, 3rd.

Can't find what you're looking for? Ask a Lawyer

Get free answers from experienced attorneys.


Ask now

29,156 answers this week

3,148 attorneys answering

Ask a Lawyer

Get answers from top-rated lawyers.

  • It's FREE
  • It's easy
  • It's anonymous

29,156 answers this week

3,148 attorneys answering