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Frisco Deferred Adjudication Attorney

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Collin County Criminal Defense Lawyers for Probation and Deferred Adjudication

People who are facing criminal charges may be unsure about their options or what steps they can take to resolve their cases in ways that will minimize the effects on their lives. In most cases, people will be looking to avoid a criminal conviction whenever possible. One option for doing so may be through deferred adjudication. This form of probation may allow a person to maintain a clean criminal record while meeting certain requirements. However, it is important to understand the benefits and drawbacks of these arrangements before agreeing to them.

At Law Offices of Biederman & Burleson P.L.L.C., we provide effective representation in multiple types of criminal cases. We work to ensure that our clients understand their options at all times, and we can negotiate agreements with prosecutors that will allow a person to move forward with their life and avoid ongoing penalties. However, we are also ready to advocate on behalf of our clients in court when necessary. We can help determine the best strategies for resolving criminal cases successfully while protecting our clients' rights.

What Is Deferred Adjudication?

Deferred adjudication is a type of plea deal that may be offered in certain criminal cases. A defendant may plead "guilty" or "no contest" to the charges, but instead of being convicted of the offense, their sentence will be deferred until they complete a period of probation. If the defendant successfully completes the probation and meets all requirements put in place by the court, the charge will be dismissed, ensuring that they do not have a formal conviction on their record.

Restrictions and Requirements

During the deferred adjudication period, a person will be required to adhere to various conditions set by the court. These may include:

  • Reporting to a probation officer regularly
  • Performing a certain number of hours of community service
  • Attending counseling or educational programs
  • Abstaining from illegal substances and participating in random drug testing
  • Maintaining consistent employment
  • Compliance with travel restrictions or curfews
  • Avoiding behavior that could lead to additional criminal charges
  • Paying fines and court costs

Failure to adhere to these conditions can result in a probation violation, which may lead the court to find a person guilt and impose a sentence within the full range allowed by law for the original charge.

Probation Violations and Consequences

A probation violation during deferred adjudication can have serious repercussions. If the court finds that a violation occurred, it may decide to revoke the deferred adjudication and find the person guilty of the original charges. The court may then proceed with sentencing. Unlike traditional probation, where the sentence is typically limited to the original penalty that would have applied if the person had been convicted, a deferred adjudication violation allows the judge to impose any sentence up to the maximum penalty for the offense.

Violations that could lead to penalties for a person on deferred adjudication may include:

  • Committing a new crime, including offenses that are unrelated to the original crime
  • Failing to appear in court when required
  • Failing to meet with a probation officer at a scheduled date and time
  • Failing to pay court costs
  • Failing a drug test
  • Failing to pay restitution to the victim of the original crime
  • Failing to complete community service as required
  • Failing to participate in court-ordered counseling
  • Violating a curfew or travel restrictions
  • Failing to keep a steady job

Weighing the Advantages and Disadvantages of Deferred Adjudication

The primary advantage of deferred adjudication is the opportunity to avoid a conviction. For many, this can mean fewer long-term consequences in terms of employment, education, and other areas where a criminal record can have a significant impact. Additionally, upon successful completion of probation, a person may be eligible to seek an order of non-disclosure, preventing people from accessing criminal records related to the offense and helping reduce the negative impact of a criminal record.

However, deferred adjudication is not without its risks. What may seem like minor violations of probation requirements could lead to an arrest and conviction, and a person may face a longer sentence or harsher penalties than they would have received otherwise. Additionally, criminal records related to the charge and deferred adjudication will remain accessible until they are successfully sealed.

Contact Our McKinney Deferred Adjudication Lawyers

While deferred adjudication may be a good option for those who are facing criminal charges, it is important to fully understand the potential benefits and drawbacks. At Law Offices of Biederman & Burleson P.L.L.C., our attorneys can provide invaluable guidance, helping defendants understand the implications of deferred adjudication and the other options that may be available. We can help negotiate with prosecutors, ensuring that the conditions of deferred adjudication are fair and that a person will be able to avoid potential violations.

To get legal help with deferred adjudication and other issues that can arise during a criminal case, contact us today at 469-333-3333. We will provide you with a free consultation and case review, and we will advocate on your behalf as you defend against a criminal conviction.

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