Misdemeanors in Texas are crimes punishable by up to one year in local or county jail. Misdemeanors are categorized as Class A, B, or C. (Tex. Penal Code Ann. § 12.03.)
More serious crimes (felonies) are punishable by death or terms in state jail or prison.
For more information on felonies in Texas, see Texas Felony Crimes by Class and Sentences.
Class A Misdemeanor
In Texas, class A misdemeanors are punishable by up to one year in jail, a fine of up to $4,000, or both jail time and a fine. Pimping is an example of a class A misdemeanor.
(Tex. Penal Code Ann. § 12.21.)
For more information on pimping and related crimes, see Prostitution, Pimping, and Pandering Laws in Texas.
Class B Misdemeanor
Under Texas's laws, a class B misdemeanor is punishable by:
- up to 180 days in jail
- a fine of up to $2,000, or
(Tex. Penal Code Ann. § 12.22.)
For example, possession of up to two ounces of marijuana is a class B misdemeanor.
For more information on penalties for crimes involving marijuana, see Texas Marijuana Laws.
Class C Misdemeanor
Class C misdemeanors in Texas are punishable by a fine of up to $500. There is no jail time for a class C misdemeanor.
Any misdemeanor that is not designated as Class A, B, or C, and has no specified punishment is a class C misdemeanor.
(Tex. Penal Code Ann. §§ 12.03, 12.23.)
Theft of property worth less than $50 is a class C misdemeanor. For more information on theft penalties, see Texas Petty Theft and Other Theft Laws.
Statute of Limitations
When a crime is committed, the statute of limitations begins to “run” and the state has a set period of time within which to begin criminal prosecution. A misdemeanor in Texas has a statute of limitations of two years.
For more information, see Texas Criminal Statute of Limitations.
Obtaining Legal Assistance
Any criminal conviction, even a misdemeanor conviction, can have serious consequences, including time in jail and a fine. If you are charged with any crime in Texas, you should contact a local criminal defense attorney. An attorney will be able to tell you how your case is likely to fare in court based on the law, the facts, and the assigned judge and prosecutor. With an attorney’s help, you can obtain the best possible outcome under the circumstances.