Think about it. You are facing charges where, if convicted, you could end up spending considerable time in jail. However, the prosecution presents you with a deal – plead guilty to lesser charges in exchange for a lighter sentence. You might want to jump on the offer without a second thought, but you need to be careful. Everything might not be as it seems.
In some cases, the prosecution does not have sufficient evidence to nail you for the original charges, and a plea deal could be their only means of securing a conviction. Here is what you need to know.
You will have to admit guilt of another offense
A plea deal is a give and take between you and the prosecution. You have to admit that you are guilty of another offense, even if you did not commit it, and agree to the sentence. That will mean an entry into your criminal record, and you may have to live with the inconvenience that comes with it.
You may lose your right to appeal
Part of the deal may include waiving your right to appeal the sentence handed to you. This may not be in your best interests, especially if you are given an undesirable sentence upon admitting guilt.
For immigrants, there may be further consequences
Once you plead guilty to certain offenses, it could affect your status as a citizen of the United States. If you leave everything to chance with your plea bargain, you may give up the chance to reside in the country lawfully.
Protect your legal rights
Remember, you have a right to a fair trial, and it is up to you to accept or reject the plea deal. With that in mind, you need to carefully weigh your options after considering the facts of your case and decide whether the plea deal is in your best interests or not.