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Points to consider regarding plea deals in criminal cases

In every criminal case, you can choose the path that your defense will take. Some people want to fight the charges and are willing to stand trial before a jury of their peers. Other people might want to avoid a trial at all costs. If you decide that you want to try to resolve the issue before trial, you might be able to consider a plea bargain.

A plea bargain is something that isn't appropriate in every case. If you assert your innocence in the matter, you shouldn't consider a plea deal because it will require you to plead guilty to criminal charges. In some cases, it is possible to plead no contest to the charge, which means that you aren't saying you are guilty but you are acknowledging that the prosecution has ample evidence against you that could likely lead to a conviction.

It is sometimes possible to use plea bargains to get a reduced charge that is less severe or has a lesser penalty than your original charge. You should think carefully about this point if you are considering a plea that is based on a charge reduction.

Some plea deals have to do with the sentence you will face. These plea deals have to be considered carefully based on what you might face before a jury.

In all cases, a plea deal is subject to the approval of the court. It is possible that the court will decline to accept the plea bargain, so you need to consider what this means for your defense and the rest of your life.

Source: FindLaw, "Plea Bargains: In Depth," accessed July 26, 2017

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