What Are the Consequences for a Felony Theft Conviction in New Jersey?

Free Case Evaluation
hands in handcuffs

Theft is a major crime taken seriously across the entirety of the United States. It is defined as the unlawful stealing of someone else’s property without permission. In New Jersey, theft can be charged as a misdemeanor, referred to as a disorderly persons offense, or a felony. Either way, there is a plethora of consequences associated with theft. If you require legal assistance for a felony theft charge, reach out to a Mercer County theft lawyer who can help.

What Types of Theft Are There?

New Jersey recognizes multiple kinds of theft. They include:

  • Theft by unlawful taking
    • E.g. stealing a parked car
  • Theft by deception
    • E.g. collecting donations under false pretenses and keeping the money
  • Theft by extortion
    • E.g. threatening to expose secrets or photos unless the person gives you what you want

Is My Theft Charge a Misdemeanor or a Felony?

There are a variety of factors that a prosecutor will look at to determine whether to charge you with a misdemeanor or a felony theft. When it comes to theft by unlawful taking, the punishment will be determined based on the value of the items stolen.

  • If the value is less than $200 it is considered a misdemeanor or disorderly persons offense.
  • If the value is $200 to $500 it is considered a fourth-degree felony.
  • If the value is $500 to $75,000 it is considered a third-degree felony.
  • If the value is greater than $75,000 it is considered a second-degree felony.

Other factors can alter the extent of your charges. Even if the value of goods stolen is less than $500, you could be charged with a third-degree felony if:

  • The item stolen is a firearm
  • The item stolen is 1 kilogram or less of a controlled substance
  • The item stolen is a New Jersey blank prescription pad
  • The theft is related to a breach of obligation between a trustee and a beneficiary

Your theft may be charged as a first-degree felony if the theft occurred with another violent crime such as assault, robbery, or carjacking.

What Are the Penalties for a Felony Theft Charge?

Penalties for felony theft by unlawful taking will vary depending on the specifics of your case. Generally, the following can be considered standard penalties for each offense.

Fourth-degree felony

  • Fines up to $10,000
  • Jail time up to 18 months

Third-degree felony

  • Fines up to $10,000
  • Jail time ranging from 3 to 5 years

Second-degree felony

  • Fines up to $15,000
  • Jail time ranging from 5 to 10 years

First-degree felony

  • Fines up to $200,000
  • Jail time ranging from 10 to 20 years

Working with an experienced lawyer can allow you to understand your situation and your rights. If your attorney can negotiate your charges down to a misdemeanor, your penalties will not be as severe. Contact a skilled attorney for more information.

Read Our
Latest Blogs

See all our blogs
car driving on highway

Is Driving Without Insurance a Crime in New Jersey?

Read on to discover the penalties associated with driving without auto insurance in New Jersey. Cont...

Read More
armed robbery in car

What Are the Best Defenses Against Armed Robbery Charges in New Jersey?

Are you wondering what defenses you can use during your armed robbery case? Keep reading to find out...

Read More
See all our blogs