People who are facing criminal charges should ensure they understand all the possible outcomes of their case. These matters are typically resolved through either a criminal trial or – more commonly – a plea deal.
There are a few things to think about if you’re considering a plea deal. The primary one is that you should only consider a plea deal if you’re guilty of the crime. You can’t appeal the plea deal, so you must ensure that this is truly the best option for you to resolve your case.
Here are two other things to remember:
The terms of a plea deal can vary
The terms of a plea deal vary based on what the defense and the prosecution agree on. In exchange for things like a specific sentence or lesser terms, you’ll have to plead either no contest or guilty to the charges that are agreed upon. Additionally, the court doesn’t have to accept the plea deal.
Collateral consequences still apply
Even though your case is resolved through a plea deal, you’ll still have to deal with collateral consequences so this should be a consideration of your decision. These include factors such as:
- Inability to carry a firearm
- Drivers’ license suspension
- Inability to get a security clearance
- Problems with public assistance programs
- Trouble finding a job
Make sure that you review the options that you have for your defense strategy so you can determine the best one for your case. Having someone on your side who can help you through this can reduce the stress you’re dealing with by making sure you fully understand how each option will impact your future.