Can I Get a Plea Bargain in My New York DUI Case?



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    If you have been charged with driving while under the influence (DUI), you may be wondering whether there are any alternatives to going to trial. In some cases, it may be possible to negotiate a plea bargain in which you plead guilty to a less serious offense for a more lenient sentence. However, this isn’t always an option. Please continue reading to learn if a plea bargain can be offered in a New York DUI case and why connecting with a determined Garden City, NY, DWI/DUI Attorney is in your best interest. 

    What is a Plea Bargain?

    A plea bargain is an agreement between a person charged with committing a crime (defendant) and the prosecution. Generally, the defendant will agree to plead guilty or not contest a less severe charge or more lenient penalties than a judge might otherwise impose for the charged offense. Essentially, a defendant can avoid the uncertainty of a trial by accepting a plea bargain. However, the terms of the agreement must be presented to the court. If a judge approves the plea agreement, the defendant will plead guilty to a reduced charge and be subject to penalties for the lesser offense.

    Can You Get a DUI Charge Reduced to a Lesser Offense?

    Whether or not you can negotiate a plea bargain on a New York DUI charge ultimately depends on the unique circumstances of your case. While the prosecution is not bound by a legal obligation to extend a plea deal, they are generally more willing to negotiate when a defendant has no proper DUI convictions, a relatively low BAC reading, and there were no accidents involved.

    New York law prohibits DUI charges from being reduced to lesser offenses like reckless driving. However, it’s possible to reduce a DUI charge to a driving while ability impaired (DWAI) violation. A DWAI is not considered a crime but a traffic infraction. While this violation carries similar penalties to a DUI conviction, including potential jail time, probation, fines, and license revocation, it will not result in a criminal record. If the prosecution engages in sentence bargaining, they can agree to lesser penalties, such as no jail time, limited probation, or a decreased driver’s license suspension period.

    Before you accept any plea bargain, it’s in your best interest to consult an experienced criminal defense attorney from Grunwald & Seman, who can help you determine the best course of action given the unique circumstances of your case. If you are facing criminal charges for DUI, please don’t hesitate to contact our legal team today to learn more about how we can assist you.

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