When an individual is charged with a crime, the pending charges are often life impacting for defendants in New Jersey and elsewhere around the nation. In most cases, defendants seek to initiate a defense plan immediately in order to avoid additional consequences such as a damaged personal and professional reputation. Moreover, some seek defense methods that could speed up the process and even allow them to avoid going to court. In these cases, a defense plea bargain might be their best option.
What is a defense plea bargain? It is a defense method used in criminal cases. Roughly 90 percent of all criminal cases in the United Stated are settled by a plea bargain, and is popular for both prosecutors and defense attorneys because it saves both side time and money. In addition, defendants often benefit from this defense method because it could save them from being convicted of a serious charge and receiving a jail sentence.
There are numerous benefits of plea bargains. First, it is a trade risk for certainty. Going to trial means not being aware of the end result, but a plea bargain allows the defendant to understand the agreement. Next, it provides an opportunity to avoid jail time and the stigma that goes with it. Third, it is common for plea bargains to reduce the charges, which could help those dealing with situations involving the “three strikes” rule. Furthermore, it could result in a reduced sentence, which often occurs when prosecutors cannot reduce the charges.
Finally, plea bargains help defendants avoid the hassles, publicity and stigma that going to court could cause. Moreover, this defense process resolves the issue quickly and allows defendants to move on from the criminal charges they were facing.
No matter the charge or whether or not a defendant has a past criminal record, defendants should be aware of their criminal defense options. Designing a strong defense or going through other defense options such as a plea bargain could help defendants avoid serious penalties and life impacting consequences.