Pleading guilty in a DUI case means you will be convicted and face sentencing by the judge.
There are two ways you can be found guilty in a DUI case:
- You go to trial and the jury finds you guilty
- You agree to enter a guilty plea before trial
Legally, the outcome of either one is the same—you will be convicted and the judge will proceed with sentencing you. But the second option means you never have to face a courtroom. Prosecutors know that you don’t want to go to court, and they will use this to pressure you to plead guilty. They will also offer you a “deal” if you agree to do so.
Think carefully before entering a guilty plea for any reason. It is the most serious choice you can make in a DUI case. There are several things you should understand about this plea:
- Once you plead guilty, there is no way legally to maintain your innocence. You have publicly admitted that you committed the crime.
- If you plead guilty, it is very difficult to appeal your DUI conviction.
- Pleading guilty should be a last resort in any DUI case.
In some cases, a good DUI lawyer can work out a deal that actually works in your favor. In others they may be able to get the charges dropped. You should never plead guilty to DUI without speaking to a good lawyer first.
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