Many states have laws that establish different levels or classifications for misdemeanors, such as Class 1, Class 2, etc. The most severe classes are those that are punishable by jail time, while the other classifications are misdemeanors for which the maximum sentence does not include incarceration.
Misdemeanor sentences of incarceration are usually served in the local city or county jail, while felony sentences are served in prison. Most misdemeanor sentences, however, usually involve paying a fine and doing community service or serving probation.
Except in a very few states, people convicted of misdemeanors do not lose any civil rights, as convicted felons do, but can be prohibited from getting certain jobs.