Indictable Criminal Offense or Disorderly Persons Offense?

NJ Criminal Defense FAQ  |  See also:  NJ DWI FAQ

Q) How is an indictable criminal offense different from a disorderly persons offense?

A) The definitions of criminal offenses differ from state to state.  Most states classify criminal offenses as either felonies or misdemeanors.  In New Jersey, they are divided into two categories: indictable criminal offenses (“crimes”) and disorderly persons offenses.  Crimes are further broken down by degree, with corresponding maximum penalties.  Crimes are prosecuted in the Superior Court and disorderly persons offenses are prosecuted in a municipal court.  The penalties for crimes and disorderly persons offenses differ in that disorderly persons offenses are punishable by up to a maximum of six months in jail and crimes are punishable by more than six months in jail.

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