When Is It Best to Consider a Plea Negotiation?

Reaching This Type of Agreement Requires Great Criminal Defense Experience and Skills

Posted on July 09, 2012 by Jeffrey Feiler

Many Americans are familiar with legal trouble, either through personal or secondhand experience. Thus they know how frustrating and confusing it can be to navigate the legal world, not to mention costly and time-consuming. However, dealing with legal trouble does not always have to be so stressful and there are options to help alleviate the aggravation. Choosing an experienced criminal lawyer, for instance, is the first step in the right direction.

What many people do not realize is that most cases never make it to court. It would simply be impossible for prosecutors and judges to take on every case due to the sheer number of them. Therefore, many cases are decided in pre-trial discussions, which are called plea negotiations or plea bargains. Meetings take place, usually before a trial in court, where the prosecution and defense attempt to arrive at a resolution that will benefit both parties.

Finding the middle ground
While a trial can be a fierce and ugly battle between two opposing sides, a plea negotiation can be a more tame affair, with the goal of compromise usually at the forefront. In a plea bargain, the defense and prosecution both usually benefit in some way, in a way a trial might not have. Maybe the defendant agrees to plead "guilty" or "no contest" to a lesser crime in exchange for lighter charges. Or maybe the defendant agrees to reveal information -- crucial to the case and/or about other criminal activity -- such as names of others involved in the crime or the location of stolen goods. After an agreement is reached, a judge must agree to the plea terms. If he or she does not agree, then the plea bargain is cancelled.

Now you might be wondering, "When is going for a plea negotiation the best way to resolve a case?". While in many cases plea negotiations can be the best choice to save time, stress, and resources of everyone involved as they usually help keep people out of jail and avoid overcrowding prisons and thus jacking up taxes and overall stress, they are not always the right path. It is highly recommended that a thorough evaluation of your case is made by an experienced criminal lawyer to help make this important decision based on your particular situation.

Remember, strategy and skill are crucial to any negotiation. A qualified criminal defense lawyer brings these valuable assets to the negotiating table and uses them to obtain the best possible results for clients. Make no mistake, whether your case involves going to trial or settling outside of court, a good attorney makes all the difference.

A key factor to consider when choosing an attorney is his or her familiarity with the local jurisdiction's court system. Only a knowledgeable criminal defense lawyer with a detailed understanding of the local legal system can predict and deal with the specific challenges involved in the plea bargaining process. The expertise in local cases will help him or her to determine when it is in the client's best interest to pursue a plea negotiation, or when going to trial is the best option.

Jeffrey Feiler is a well-known Miami Criminal Defense Attorney and Miami DUI Lawyer who has been successfully defending the rights of clients for over 20 years. Mr. Feiler and the Feiler Law Firm are compassionate to individual's needs, while simultaneously obtaining desired resolutions and judgements.

Disclaimer: The names of all persons, including Police, have been changed to fictitious names in the case of blog posts about actual cases handled by Jeffrey Feiler and the Feiler Law Firm. The hiring of a lawyer is an important decision that should not be based solely upon advertisements. Before you decide, ask us to send you free written information about our qualifications and experience. This web site is designed for general information only. The information presented at this site should not be construed to be formal, legal advice nor the formation of a lawyer/client relationship.