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What Is the Difference Between Federal Court and State Court?

When someone is being prosecuted for a crime they can be charged in either Federal Court or State Court. State Court is when you're charged by the state authorities typically in the state where the crime was committed; for instance, State of Florida vs. Joe Defendant. State of California vs. Jane Doe. That's when you're being charged in a state court.

However, in a federal court it's the United States of America vs. Joe Defendant or the United States vs. Jane Doe. Every state has its own court system and both the laws and the court room procedure can change or vary from state to state.

When it comes to the United States court, however, typically the laws are the same in all of the 50 states and United States territories; also the courtroom procedure is very similar, there may be differences in local rules but for the most part it's the same type of practice.

An experienced criminal defense attorney is at home in any courtroom, anywhere in the country, State or Federal no matter what the charge; that's the important distinction, not whether you're charged in State or Federal Court but whether or not you're in the hands of an experienced attorney to guide you through the process.

Remember, the stakes can be very high no matter where you're charged with a crime and the outcome can affect you for the rest of your life.