If you were recently caught drinking and driving, you may have been arrested and charged with a driving under the influence (DUI) charge. The law takes this charge seriously; however, the prosecutor handling your case might offer you a plea bargain. Here are three reasons accepting a plea bargain is often the best option to take.
You Will Have A Lesser Charge On Your Record
Prosecutors are not likely to offer plea bargains to repeat offenders, but they will often offer them to people that have clean criminal backgrounds. The purpose of a plea bargain is to avoid a trial. Trials take time and cost money, and it is often better if they can be avoided. The only way to avoid going to trial for your charge is if you accept a plea bargain offered by the prosecutor.
Plea bargains not only benefit the court, but they also benefit people with criminal charges against them. The main benefit you will receive from a plea bargain is a less-serious offense. For example, the plea might offer you a charge of reckless driving or speeding instead of a DUI charge.
Less-serious charges will have fewer consequences and punishments, and this could be the only way to avoid spending time in prison. You do not have to accept the plea bargain, though. You could instead plead guilty to the charges and accept the consequences for it, or you could plead not guilty and try to fight the charges.
Common DUI Defense Strategies Will Not Work For Your Case
DUI lawyers will often recommend taking plea bargains when they are offered, because there is less risk involved. When a lawyer recommends fighting a charge instead of accepting a plea, it is usually because the lawyer has a good defense strategy to use. Here are some common defense strategies that help defendants get charges dropped:
- The police did not have a valid reason to pull the person over.
- The police did not read the person his or her rights during the arrest.
- The breathalyzer equipment was faulty in some way.
- The officer waited too long to complete the sobriety tests.
- The defendant was on medication, which caused the equipment to register in the same way alcohol does.
- The defendant was only driving because of a medical emergency.
- The defendant was being forced into driving against his or her will.
If a lawyer can use one of these defenses, or can come up with a different one that will be effective, he or she might be able to get your charges dropped. If none of these defense strategies apply to your case, accepting the plea bargain is probably more advantageous for you.
Keep in mind too, that you usually do not have to make a decision about the plea bargain right away. Most courts will allow you time to think it through, and you will not have to make your decision until the trial begins.
You Will Save Money
Finally, if you are paying your DUI lawyer out of your pocket, you may want to know how you can get this issue solved in the most economical manner. The most cost-effective option you have is accepting the plea bargain. When you accept this, you can avoid paying trial fees and some court fees, and this might help you save thousands of dollars.
If you have not yet talked over your case with an attorney that specializes in DUI cases, you should do so quickly. After discussing the options you have with your lawyer, you may find that choosing to accept a plea bargain might be your best option.Share