Minnesota Sentencing Guidelines

United States Sentencing Commission

Minnesota Statutes

Federal Statutes

Minnesota State Courts

United States District Court (Minnesota)

National Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers

Families Against Mandatory Minimums



Do I need an attorney?

Whether you are being investigated for a possible criminal offense or you have already been charged with criminal offenses, you need to speak with an attorney experienced in criminal defense.  Cornwell Criminal Law offers a free 30-minute initial consultation to discuss your situation with you and to help you determine whether you really need to hire someone to represent you.

What are the levels of criminal offenses in Minnesota?

Under Minnesota state laws, there are three levels of criminal offenses.

-The first is a misdemeanor which is punishable by up to 90 days in jail and/or a fine of $1,000.

-The second is a gross misdemeanor which is punishable by up to one year in jail and/or a fine of up to $3,000.

-The third is a felony which is any offense punishable by anywhere from at least one year and one day up to life in prison.

I’m only charged with a misdemeanor.  Why do I need an attorney to represent me?

Misdemeanor convictions result in a criminal record.  This may be relevant to future prospective employers if a background check is run on you.  In addition, many misdemeanors carry with them “collateral consequences” that can have a negative impact on your life.  Some examples include losing the right to possess firearms, being denied entry into a foreign country (e.g. DWI’s and Canada), possible deportation if you are not a citizen of the United States and loss of certain licensures.

The police have asked me to give a statement.  Should I meet with them?

If the police have contacted you and are interested in meeting with you we encourage you to speak to an experienced attorney first before you make that decision.  Keep in mind that anything you do say will be used against you if you are ever charged with a crime.  It is always advisable, therefore, to get strong legal advice first.

Do you accept payment plans?

Generally, the entire fee is due upfront.  For those who qualify, however, we are happy to offer reasonable and flexible payment plans.  We encourage you to call and schedule an appointment to discuss whether a payment plan will work for you.