2591 Dallas Parkway, Suite 207A, Frisco, TX 75034

Free Consultations




Three Ways Federal Crimes Differ from State Crimes

 Posted on September 14, 2023 in Criminal Defense

Plano Criminal LawyerThe United States legal system is composed of two distinct jurisdictions: federal and state. While both handle criminal cases, there are significant differences between federal and state crimes. Understanding these differences is important for anyone ever arrested and charged with a crime at the state or federal level. Suppose you are facing criminal charges, regardless of whether they are state or federal charges. In that case, you need to strongly consider contacting a lawyer, as not doing so will likely escalate your legal troubles. 

Three Ways State and Federal Charges Are Different 

  1. Jurisdiction and authority – Federal crimes are offenses that violate federal laws enacted by Congress, such as drug trafficking across state lines or federal tax evasion. On the other hand, state crimes involve violations of laws enacted by individual states, ranging from murder, theft, and much more. Federal crimes fall under the jurisdiction of federal courts, while state crimes are typically prosecuted in state courts. The jurisdictional differences stem from the division of powers between the federal government and individual states under the U.S. Constitution

  2. Investigative Agencies and Resources – Another notable difference between federal crimes and state crimes is the involvement of investigative agencies and resources. Federal crimes are often investigated by federal law enforcement agencies, such as the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI), Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA), or Internal Revenue Service (IRS). These agencies have extensive resources, including specialized agents, forensic labs, and nationwide jurisdiction. State crimes, on the other hand, are investigated by the state and local law enforcement agencies, such as state police departments or sheriff’s offices. While state agencies also have investigative capabilities, their resources, and jurisdictional reach may be more limited compared to federal agencies.

  3. Sentencing and penalties – This area of federal and state law differs considerably. Federal crimes often carry harsher penalties due to federal sentencing guidelines. Additionally, federal crimes may result in longer prison sentences and heavier fines than similar offenses at the state level. Meanwhile, state crimes allow judges more discretion in sentencing, taking into account various factors such as the severity of the offense, mitigating circumstances, and more.

Contact a Collin County Criminal Defense Lawyer

Ultimately, the distinctions between federal and state crimes are important for anyone involved in a criminal case. Consulting with an experienced attorney is the most important thing you can do during this crucial time. Contact the skilled Fairview criminal defense attorneys with Law Offices of Biederman & Burleson P.L.L.C.. Call 469-333-3333 for a free consultation. 

Share this post:
top 100 avvo best business top 40 fox usa cnn wfaa elite lawyer
Back to Top