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The ABCs of Dealing With Domestic Violence

Domestic violence was a part of my family's life for years. When I made the decision to leave with my children, I had to rely on the law to provide the protection we needed. Sometimes, the system does not work as fast as we want. I soon learned that going at it alone without any guidance caused significant delays. I created this blog to help others who are seeking legal means to deal with an abusive ex. By making the right moves, it is possible to get the necessary protections in place so that you can also live a happier and healthier life.


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The ABCs of Dealing With Domestic Violence

The Benefits Of Plea Bargaining

by Gina Hill

If you have been arrested for a crime, you may have had a conversation with your criminal defense attorney regarding plea bargaining. This can be a good way to reduce your charge and overall sentencing for the crime you were arrested for, but it's not always a guarantee that you will be able to get the prosecutor to accept a plea bargain deal. It's best to talk more about this with your attorney, but this article will give you an overview on the type of plea bargaining that's available, and how it can be beneficial to you.

Plea Bargain Overview

A plea bargain is an agreement between the attorney in charge of prosecuting your case, and your attorney. If your attorney is successful in negotiating a plea bargain, it usually means you'll be pleading guilty to a lesser charge. This is beneficial because if you've been charged with a felony, or your charge requires jail time as part of your sentencing.

Justifications for Plea Bargaining

There are many reasons why plea bargains are justified, including:

  • Overcrowded courts. If plea bargains weren't allowed, there would be an overwhelming amount of cases that are heard each day. As it is with plea bargaining courts are still overbooked.
  • Prosecutor overload. Prosecutors face the same problem with case overload, so being able to plea bargain on some cases are helpful to prosecutor offices.

Types of Plea Bargaining

There are a couple types of plea bargains. The first is charge bargaining, which is the most common type of plea bargaining. As stated above, your attorney will work with the prosecutor to determine an agreeable charge that you can plead down to. The charge will be plead to on the condition that you understand your original charge. You'll plea to a charge that has less consequences than  your original charge, but usually this plea will come with some type of stipulation, usually that if you find yourself in trouble again within a certain amount of time, the deal is off and you'll have to plead guilty to the original crime.

Another type of plea bargaining is sentence bargaining. If your attorney negotiates for a sentence bargain, you'll plead guilty to your original charge, but your sentence would be less than the sentence that would usually come with the original charge. For example, if the crime you were charged with carries a mandatory jail sentence, but there are extenuating circumstances that would make serving jail time difficult, your attorney would ask for a sentence plea bargain to keep you out of jail. 

Talk with your criminal defense attorney about a plea bargain possibility in your case.