January 2, 2024 By Wallin & Klarich

Plea Bargains vs. Going to Trial: Making Informed Decisions in Your Criminal Case 

California is known for having one of the highest incarceration rates in the United States. This means that a lot of individuals are charged with crimes and end up facing the criminal justice system. So, it’s important to know your rights and options. Read on to find out the differences between a plea bargain and going to trial.

Choosing Wallin & Klarich to represent your case puts you in a better position to receive the best outcome for your case. We have over 40 years of experience in Irvine and the rest of Southern California. Call us today at (877) 4-NO-JAIL for your free consultation!

California Laws to Keep in Mind 

One thing to keep in mind is that California has a unique three-strike law, which means that if you have two prior felony convictions and are charged with a third felony, you could face life imprisonment. This makes it even more crucial to make informed decisions when facing criminal charges.

Additionally, California has a diverse population, which means that the criminal justice system can be different depending on where you are in the state. For example, Los Angeles may have different procedures and practices compared to San Francisco or San Diego. So, it’s important to understand the laws and resources available in your specific area.

Furthermore, California also has alternative programs such as drug courts and diversion programs that allow individuals to avoid criminal charges and receive treatment instead. These options may not be available in all cases, but it’s important to know about them if you or a loved one are facing criminal charges.

Overall, California has a complex criminal justice system, and navigating it can be overwhelming. But by understanding the laws, resources, and options available to you, you can make informed decisions that can potentially impact your future.

At Wallin & Klarich, you will never be left wondering what will happen next with your case. Our attorneys will help you through each step of the process, and figure out the best strategy for your case, which will help you get the best possible outcome. Our attorneys at Wallin & Klarich are here to help you. We offer exceptional service, experience, and affordable payment options to help you manage the cost of hiring a defense attorney. Call our office today for a free consultation!

Plea Bargain 

In the realm of California’s criminal justice system, a plea bargain is a critical tool. This is an agreement between the prosecutor and the defendant, where the defendant agrees to plead guilty to a certain charge in return for some concession from the prosecutor. This agreement can often result in a less severe charge or a more lenient sentence than might result from a trial verdict. It’s important to note that California law mandates that all plea bargains must be presented in open court and approved by the presiding judge. Plea bargains in California can be a complex process and may not always be the best option depending on the specifics of the case. It’s crucial to have a comprehensive understanding of this process and to seek expert legal advice when considering a plea bargain.

Going to Trial 

In contrast to plea bargains, going to trial in California is a more formal process where the defendant’s guilt or innocence is determined by a judge or a jury. This process begins with the selection of a jury, followed by the opening statements from both the prosecution and the defense, presentation of evidence, witnesses’ testimonies, closing arguments, and finally, the verdict. Unlike a plea bargain where the outcome is typically known and agreed upon beforehand, a trial’s outcome is uncertain and is determined only after both parties have presented their case. This can result in either an acquittal, if the defendant is found not guilty, or a conviction, if the defendant is found guilty. The sentencing then is determined by the judge. While going to trial can potentially result in a complete dismissal of charges if the defendant is acquitted, it can also lead to harsher sentences compared to plea bargains if the defendant is convicted. Deciding between a plea bargain and going to trial requires a careful evaluation of the evidence, potential outcomes, and the specific circumstances of your case. 

Always consult with an experienced attorney to make an informed decision in this critical matter. Our attorneys at Wallin & Klarich have over four decades of experience representing cases like yours. Call our office today for a free consultation!

How a Defense Attorney Can Help 

A defense attorney plays a pivotal role in helping you decide whether to take a plea bargain or go to trial in California. With their extensive knowledge of the criminal justice system and specific experience with California laws, they can provide valuable insight and guidance throughout the process. They can assess the strengths and weaknesses of your case, evaluate the evidence, and forecast potential outcomes for both plea bargaining and going to trial.

Your attorney is also responsible for negotiating plea bargains with the prosecutor. They can advocate for reduced charges or more lenient sentences, and have the expertise to navigate these negotiations effectively. Their negotiation skills, combined with their knowledge of how the prosecution operates, can be instrumental in securing a favorable plea bargain.

When contemplating going to trial, your defense attorney can strategize the most robust defense possible, identify potential pitfalls, and ensure your rights are preserved throughout the trial process. They can help you weigh the risk of an uncertain trial outcome against the certainty of a plea bargain.

Communication with your attorney is crucial. Make sure you fully understand all the implications of each option, and remember, the final decision always rests with you. It’s your attorney’s job to provide the best advice, but you are the one who has to live with the consequences of the decision.

In the complex landscape of California’s criminal justice system, having a skilled defense attorney by your side to illuminate the best path forward is indispensable.

Our attorneys at Wallin & Klarich have the experience you need. Call our office today for a free consultation!

Contact Wallin & Klarich Today 

If you are facing criminal charges, you need an aggressive defense attorney to fight for your freedom. With 40+ years of experience, our attorneys at Wallin & Klarich have helped thousands of clients win their cases or get their charges reduced to a lesser degree. We know the most effective defenses to argue on your behalf, and we will do everything in our power to help you achieve the best possible result in your case. 

You may not be aware of all your options. Calling our office costs you nothing, but picking up the phone could be the difference between years in prison and years of freedom. Let our skilled attorneys examine your case to find the best way to avoid prison.Discover how our team can assist you. Contact us today, toll-free at (877) 4-NO-JAIL or (877) 466-5245 for a free consultation with a skilled defense attorney.

Confidential Consult
  • This field is for validation purposes and should be left unchanged.

SCHEDULE YOUR free consultation

If you or a loved one have been accused of a crime, this is the time to contact us.

  • This field is for validation purposes and should be left unchanged.