While it might not be common knowledge, the reality is many filed criminal cases do not make their way to court as they are usually resolved through agreements. This agreement is reached through a plea bargain. The plea bargaining process can have many advantages and disadvantages; as Whitney S. Boan, P.A. says, it is important to have the right information and legal representation.
A negotiation for the plea necessarily requires the defendant to take some responsibility which allows the case not to reach trial, thus saving both time and resources for the defendant and the government. This feature will provide you with information about what happens when you don’t comply with a conditional plea agreement in a P.A criminal case.
What is a Conditional Plea Agreement?
First, we will begin by defining a plea deal. This is the negotiated agreement between a defendant and a prosecutor where the accused relinquishes their rights to a fair trial. In return, they are promised a reduced charge to a less serious crime, a drop of several charges, or a more favorable sentence is reached.
On the other side, a conditional plea agreement is the third option that the defendant has to plead guilty to all the charges against them. They are also required to fulfill certain conditions set by the prosecutor with a promise of conviction of the part of the charges against them if they accomplish the agreed conditions.
In this type of plea, the defendant can withdraw their guilty plea if a higher court finds that the judge made a mistake on the defendant’s conviction. This plea ensures the defendant fulfills the agreed terms while exempting them from a greater sentence by the judge.
Why You Should Consider a Conditional Plea Agreement
- It saves time – By agreeing to a conditional plea agreement, a defendant can face their case without waiting for years to go on trial. This is important, especially if the case in question is not that severe.
- Prevents trial uncertainties – It is a pretty daunting experience to face the jury as your fate and freedom usually are based on their mercy. Agreeing to a conditional plea bargain enables you to be certain of the outcome of your case, keeping you at ease.
- It saves on Lawyer costs – Going through with a trial can be a hassle, especially financially. When this is shortened, you will be able to save a tone on lawyer fees and other charges that you may incur during the trial process.
What is Offered in a Conditional Plea Agreement?
A plea deal is usually presented by a prosecutor and agreed upon by a defendant’s lawyer, having discussed and agreed on the terms with the defendant. Depending on the type and the seriousness of the crime in question, several alternatives will be offered instead of trial. These include;
- Probation refers to the period when a defendant is being watched and supervised by a probation officer instead of facing jail time. This can vary from strict probation, which can mean home arrest, or a simple one that involves the offender reporting to their P.O at specified times.
- Restitution – A defendant may be required to pay for their crimes financially through fines and payments to the complainant or community service.
- Rehabilitation – This can be done especially when the defendant committed the offense while under the influence. This is usually done to ensure they get the necessary help needed to cope with drug or alcohol abuse.
What Happens if You Don’t Comply With a Conditional Plea Agreement?
When the defendant has agreed to a conditional plea agreement, they are expected by the court to hold this to the later of the agreed conditions’ period. This means that if you agreed to 6-month probation with a 2-month rehabilitation session, failing to achieve this completely will lead to the plea deal being revoked.
The defendant is bound to an appeal that allows them a second chance to fulfill these conditions, and when they fail again, the judge is free to uphold a sentence based on the initial charges.
The judicial justice system can be complicated, and having the right criminal attorney can come in handy in ensuring you navigate this field with a lot of confidence. The laws vary in different states and jurisdictions. As discussed above, refer to the statutes of P.A. Having the right information is important, so make sure you go through all the provided information to have the basic knowledge before contacting a lawyer.