One common reason that people seek out the help of a criminal defense attorney is to get their charges reduced. One way to do this is to work with your criminal defense attorney to negotiate a plea bargain. Keep reading to learn about the benefits of plea bargains – not just for your immediate future but for your life overall.
What is a Plea Bargain?
FindLaw defines a plea bargain as occurring when the defendant agrees to plead guilty – usually to a lesser charge than one for which the defendant could stand trial – in exchange for a more lenient sentence, or so that certain related charges are dismissed.
- Getting the matter over with quickly.
Being charged with a crime is a stressful ordeal. Efficient resolution through a plea bargain is a desirable solution because a plea bargain usually requires less time in court than a trial. For example, if you are charged with a crime while traveling, a plea bargain might help you return home sooner. In addition, employed defendants can benefit from resolving their case in one court appearance through a plea bargain instead of missing work repeatedly.
- Having fewer or less serious offenses on your public record.
According to Nolo, pleading guilty or no contest in exchange for a reduction in the number of charges or the seriousness of the offenses looks a lot better on a defendant’s record than the convictions that might result following a trial. This is especially beneficial in the event that you are convicted again in the future.
For example, if an initial DUI/DWI offense had been bargained down to a lesser charge like reckless driving, a defendant might avoid jail time for the second DUI/DWI arrest. Even if you are never re-arrested, getting a charge reduced from a felony to a misdemeanor can be a critical benefit. Nolo points out that a plea bargain could help you retain your professional license, increase your future job opportunities, and allow you to possess firearms or vote.
- Having a less socially stigmatizing offense on your public record.
An aggressive criminal defense attorney can help you reduce charges that are perceived as socially offensive to less offensive charges in exchange for a guilty plea, according to Nolo. For example, a prosecutor may reduce a molestation or rape case to an assault. Conviction of the lesser charge could result in benefits such as avoiding having to register as a sex offender for life. In addition, a lesser offense may reduce the likelihood of being stigmatized by family members and friends. Even more seriously, defendants convicted of stigmatizing offenses are sometimes at a greater risk of being seriously injured (or killed) in prison.
How Can You Get the Benefits of a Plea Bargain?
If you find yourself facing criminal charges that will negatively impact your future, it’s time to get the help of New York’s dedicated criminal defense attorney. Darren DeUrso promises to fight for your rights, and work tirelessly towards your best possible outcomes. Don’t settle for less!
Call 914.772.8614 or fill out a convenient online form.
Darren DeUrso, Attorney at Law
188 East Post Road, Suite 300
White Plains, NY 10601