When you are facing criminal charges of any sort, including charges for assault or battery, you might be interested in learning if the prosecution is willing to work out a plea arrangement with you. There are several areas in which you can negotiate when it comes to a plea bargain. Understanding each of those areas might help you come to an agreement with the prosecution. It is possible to negotiate only in one area; however, it is also possible to negotiate in more than one area.
What are the areas of negotiation?
The areas for negotiation for a plea bargain include the sentence, the charge and the facts. If you are negotiating the sentence, you might have to plead guilty to your original charge without having to face the harshest sentence. If you are negotiating the charge, you might end up with a lesser charge than your original. If you are negotiating over the facts, you might be able to stop certain evidence from being presented. Fact bargaining is the least used of these three areas.
What elements have to be present for a plea bargain to be valid?
There are three elements that have to be present if you are entering into a plea deal. There has to be a factual basis to support the points in the plea deal. You have to know you are waiving your rights. You have to voluntarily waive those rights.
Does the court have to accept a plea bargain?
The points in a plea deal are subject to the approval of the court. A plea deal is an agreement between the defense and the prosecution. It doesn't become final until the court approves.
Understanding how to approach a plea bargain and knowing exactly how it will affect you are vital if you are considering this type of deal. Carefully consider all aspects of the plea deal so you can determine if you are willing to accept the terms.
Source: FindLaw, "Plea Bargaining: Areas of Negotiation," accessed Sep. 24, 2015