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What is a Plea in Abeyance?

A plea in abeyance is essentially a contract between a criminal defendant and the court, whereby the court agrees to accept a guilty plea or no contest plea, and hold that plea in abeyance for a period of time while the defendant meets certain requirements (like paying a fine, community service, not getting any new charges etc.). At the end of the plea in abeyance period, if the defendant complies with all of the terms, the criminal charges are dismissed.

A plea in abeyance is not available to everyone (the prosecutor will look at the severity of the charges, the defendant’s criminal history etc.), but you have a far better chance of successfully negotiating a plea in abeyance with an experienced attorney on your side.

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