You are facing a criminal charge and a potentially lengthy trial. There’s a good chance you will get jail time, costly fines, a lengthy probation, and a black mark on your record. Is there any way to make all of this go away? There may be with a plea bargain.
Plea bargaining is the act of negotiating with the prosecution before you go into court. Your attorney or the attorney for the prosecution may offer the plea, and if both sides agree, they will present it to the judge, who can decide if it is acceptable. Most plea bargains involve the defendant admitting guilt in exchange for a lesser charge or less punishment.
The Pros of Plea Bargaining
Although you should always discuss your particular situation with your lawyer before agreeing to a plea bargain, these plea deals are can be advantageous for the following reasons:
- Lesser charges. Prosecutors often offer lesser charges than what the defendant is facing if they can be guaranteed a guilty plea. Taking a plea bargain deal means the defendant won’t have to go to court and risk receiving a harsher penalty from the judge.
- Money saved. Some trials can go on for months. Along with court costs, defendants also have to pay lawyers’ fees during these lengthy trials. When both sides agree to a plea bargain, the matter is settled quickly, which saves the defendant time and money.
- A better-looking record. Accepting a plea bargain typically results in lesser charges, which looks better on a record than the charges you may receive if you go to trial. This may help you with gaining employment in the future, and if you happen to get in trouble with the law again.
Look to Us for Advice
The Easley Law Firm wants to discuss your situation with you and help you decide if a plea bargain is right for you. We have helped many defendants in the Fairfax area with their cases, and may be able to do the same for you.