A person who is facing a felony charge can spend considerable time in prison. This type of charge comes with a minimum of at least one year of incarceration. This doesn't mean that a conviction will automatically send you to prison because some people will receive probation as a sentence instead of being put behind bars.
All felony charges are eligible for jury trials. Some defendants opt to do this because they are continuing to assert their innocence. Preparing for a trial takes time and effort, so be sure to review your options when you are considering this.
Another way that felonies are handled is through a plea deal. This is used often because some defendants admit that they did something wrong and know that they have to deal with the consequences. When they work out a plea deal, they have some say in what punishment they will have.
Not all felony charges are eligible for plea deals. Cases that involve mandatory minimum sentences have to take that into account. It might be possible to get a deal for the matter; however, it couldn't be less than that minimum.
There are some other options that the court can use when handing down a punishment. Some felony convictions result in sentences involving drug court, probation, community service and other similar non-incarceration options.
Talking to your defense attorney about what's possible in your case is one of the first things you need to do. You need time to vet out the options so that you are able to make decisions that are best for you.