It’s almost certain that a person arrested on DUI drug charges will be asked by prosecutors to make a plea deal. Here, the defendant pleads a certain way in exchange for concessions. In this guide, potential clients will learn about the plea bargaining process.
There are Different Kinds of Deals
A plea deal isn’t a simple matter of entering a guilty plea and receiving a shorter sentence; these deals can come in different forms and they often give parties the ability to negotiate a mutually agreeable arrangement. Plea deals commonly work in the following ways: pleading guilty to a lesser offense, dismissal of some charges in exchange for a guilty plea on others, or agreeing to a punishment that doesn’t involve license suspension or high fines.
Deals Can be Done Anywhere, at Any Time
A person or their attorney can ask for a plea deal at any time during the proceedings. Such discussions may be formal or informal; they can be done by phone or in a judge’s chambers.
A Plea Deal is a Compromise
Prosecutors aren’t obligated to make deals. In most instances, they’re motivated by the desire to reduce court costs and keep the docket free for other, more important cases. However, defendants should be willing to compromise, especially if the state’s case is strong. If a defendant is represented by a lawyer, they’ll have an easier time balancing their desires against the state’s position.
Don’t Make a Trial-Day Deal Until the Officer Shows Up
If the investigating officer doesn’t appear in court, the judge may throw the case out and the prosecutor may make a generous settlement offer. Before the defendant goes further, they should ask the prosecutor whether the officer will appear in court. Alternatively, the client could simply ask for some time to consider the deal, and if the officer doesn’t appear, decline the offer.
Finalize the Deal
Once the defendant and the prosecutor form a verbal agreement, they must both appear before a judge to explain it. The judge does not have to accept the plea deal, but they usually do. If things don’t work out and the judge dictates a different arrangement, the defendant can withdraw the plea and take the case to trial.