When you are facing criminal charges, you might be presented with a plea bargain. This is a way that you can resolve your case without having to go to trial; however, it usually means that you will have to plead guilty to the charges that are being placed against you. That isn’t something that all defendants are willing to do, so you have carefully consider the offer when it is presented.
Plea bargains serve an important purpose in the criminal justice system. These deals between defendants and prosecutors can help to reduce the overcrowding in the judicial system since you won’t have to wait on a trial date and take up the court’s time with the trial. Instead, the deal between you and the prosecution can be reviewed by a judge and handled in a matter of minutes.
Another benefit to a plea deal is that it might help you to avoid having to go to prison. This is a benefit for you, as well as the prison system. The prison system in most areas is overcrowded. If defendans can be sentenced to alternative sentences, such as probation or drug court, the prisons are one less person overcrowded.
Many prosecutors are willing to consider plea bargains when a defense attorney says that a client is willing to consider one. This is because prosecutors are just as backlogged as judges and might have too many cases to prosecute effectively.
For both sides, plea deals do away with the uncertainties of a trial. As the defendant, you will know what your likely sentence is going to be. For the prosecutor, they will have the guilty (or an alternative) plea and will be able to close out the case.
Plea bargains aren’t appropriate for every case. If you are considering a plea deal, make sure that you know how it is going to affect your case and your rights. This is especially true if you are facing a felony since that would mean you would be labled as a felon and would have to deal with the consequences of that.
Source: FindLaw, “Plea Bargains and Judicial Economy,” accessed Aug. 30, 2016
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