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Talk to an Experienced St. Petersburg / Clearwater Lawyer About Withheld Adjudication
A withhold of adjudication is a unique sentencing option that is available to judges in many criminal cases arising out of Pinellas County. It is intended to give first-time offenders and those with a minimal prior criminal history a second chance by avoiding a formal conviction. In a criminal case, the judge, pursuant to Florida Statute 948.01, can order you to serve a a term of probation without formally convicting you of a criminal offense. If you abide by the terms of probation, your sentence is complete and you can truthfully state that you were never convicted of the charge.
Obtaining a Withhold of Adjudication may further allow you to seal your criminal record. In order to obtain a withhold of adjudication, your lawyer must persuade the judge to conclude that:
First time offenders on both felony and misdemeanor charges often qualify for withholds of adjudication. But, even some multiple offenders may be eligible. Judges have broad power to grant a withhold of adjudication to people, despite their prior record. You should consult with an experienced St. Petersburg / Clearwater criminal defense lawyer to find out if your case qualifies for this sentencing option.
Although a withhold of adjudication is not the same as having the charge dismissed, it does mean that a formal adjudication of guilt is not imposed and you are therefore not convicted. You can thereafter accurately state that you have not been convicted of a criminal offense and can escape the consequences associated with a conviction. For example:
We can provide the prosecutor and judge with mitigating facts to portray you and your case in the most positive light. It is critical to have a plan in place for obtaining a withhold of adjudication before going to court. We invite you to meet with us to discuss the facts of your case and to develop a strategy that is focused on achieving an outcome that avoids a formal conviction.