In most cases, your attorney and the prosecutor will meet to discuss your case before it goes to trial. The prosecutor may offer to negotiate with your attorney. There are many possible types of “plea agreements.” The prosecutor may offer a reduced charge. Or, if you´re charged with several offenses, the offer may be to dismiss one or more charges or “read in” a charge (this means that you won´t plead guilty to that charge, but the charge may be considered for sentencing). In return, you´ll be expected to plead guilty or no contest to at least one offense. Sometimes the plea agreement will be a recommendation for a particular sentence. Or it may be an agreement that the prosecutor will make no sentence recommendation. In any event, the judge does not have to honor the plea agreement. Your attorney and the judge must explain this to you. They must also explain all the possible results of a plea of guilty or no contest. The judge will usually pronounce sentence immediately in a misdemeanor case. In a felony case, the judge may order a presentence investigation and set a separate sentencing date.

See also…

Attorneys, Courts, Litigation

Criminal Law, Arrests, Traffic Tickets