Is It Better To Take A Plea Deal?

Should I take a plea or go to trial?

An accepted plea offer guarantees an adjudication of guilt.

An experienced attorney can advise you of the legal consequences of accepting the plea offer.

On the other hand, at trial the State must prove its case against you with enough evidence to convince a jury of your guilt beyond a reasonable doubt..

What are the pros and cons of a plea bargain?

However, they must also be aware of the disadvantages.Advantages. Here are a few of the advantages for criminal defendants who accept a plea bargain:Lighter Sentence. … Reduced Charge. … The Case Is Over. … Disadvantages. … Avoiding Problems with Prosecution’s Case. … No “Not Guilty” Result. … Possibility of Coercion.More items…

Can a judge change a plea bargain at sentencing?

If the Judge Accepts the Plea Once the judge accepts the defendant’s guilty or no contest plea and enters a conviction, that judge can’t later overturn the plea agreement. … If the defendant doesn’t satisfy the conditions, the judge can reject the plea and resentence the defendant.

What happens if you reject a plea deal?

But defendants often reject bargains, and take their chances at trial. Yes, there is a risk that the prosecutor may end up recommending a harsher sentence than the one proposed as part of the plea bargain. Or, even if the recommendation remains the same, the judge may not follow it.

Can you plea bargain a felony?

A felony charge can be dropped to a misdemeanor charge through a plea bargain, mistake found by the arresting officer or investigations, or by good behavior if probation was sentenced for the crime. … For example, a Federal crime as serious as terrorism will never be a misdemeanor and therefore cannot be reduced.

Why would a prosecutor offered a plea bargain?

It saves the Justice System valuable time & costs. It assists in reducing the numbers of matters being listed for trial. It entitles the accused to a reduction in sentence on account of pleading guilty. It can provide an incentive to others to also plead at an early stage.

When should you take a plea deal?

They may try to convince you it is in your best interest to accept a deal on their terms or risk being charged with a more serious offense and face harsher penalties. But plea bargains are sometimes offered because evidence against you is flimsy and the prosecutor believes they might lose at trial.

How do you get a good plea deal?

Consider a plea deal offered by the prosecution.Be realistic. If your case is weak, don’t expect a dismissal or a great plea deal. … Be flexible. If the prosecutor offers a plea deal that isn’t as good as you had hoped for. … Don’t give in too quickly. Plea bargaining is a negotiation. … Propose alternatives.

Do prosecutors always offer plea deals?

Prosecutors need to focus on some cases. A prosecutor is overburdened with cases every week. To focus their efforts on bigger cases, they may offer plea bargains to cases with first-time offenders or lesser charges so that they can reduce the strain on their schedule.

What happens when you take a plea deal?

When people accept plea bargains, the criminal outcome is very similar to pleading guilty to a charge. … The judge will review the plea bargain, and if he or she wants to tweak any aspects of the deal, he or she can fine-tune the proposed sentence based on the facts of the case and the nature of the crime.

Why you should never take a plea bargain?

Keep in mind: A guilty or no contest plea is considered establishment of your guilt, and the conviction will go on your criminal record. You may lose certain rights or privileges, such as the right to vote, or to own firearms. You may also lose your right to appeal by entering into a plea bargain.

Do judges usually accept plea bargains?

Before the agreement can be finalized, however, a judge needs to review and approve it. The prosecutor must present all of the terms of the deal to the judge, including conditions that must be satisfied in the future. The judge has the authority to accept or reject a plea bargain.

Can a plea bargain be negotiated?

A plea deal may be negotiated on the facts of the case. In this form of negotiation, a defendant may admit some facts so that a prosecutor does not have to prove them at trial, but, in exchange for admitting those facts, the prosecutor may agree to leave other facts out of evidence for the benefit of the defendant.

What is the downside of plea bargains?

List of the Disadvantages of Plea BargainingIt removes the right to have a trial by jury. … It may lead to poor investigatory procedures. … It still creates a criminal record for the innocent. … Judges are not required to follow a plea bargain agreement. … Plea bargains eliminate the chance of an appeal.More items…•