Benefits of Withholds of Adjudication
Tampa Criminal Defense Attorneys
Many individuals facing a criminal charge could have the opportunity to seek a "Withhold of Adjudication". This is when the judge orders probation without a formal conviction of the offense. Florida law provides that in certain instances, the individual can avoid a criminal conviction through a Withhold of Adjudication, and the judge in the case is vested with the authority to implement this alternative after they have imposed a sentence of probation. A criminal defense attorney from The Law Office of Timothy Hessinger can review your situation and advise you if this is an opportunity that should be pursued in your case.
Understanding Withholds of Adjudication
A "Withhold" could be possible for those who are facing their first criminal charge, either a misdemeanor or felony. In some cases, it is possible when the accused has a prior criminal record. Evaluating your case early is crucial in order to determine if you are eligible to seek this alternative. A withhold is usually used when the individual is seen as having exhibited uncharacteristic behavior and allows "one free bite of the apple". Through this legal alternative, there is no conviction on the individual's record.
This action can be of great practical assistance to the defendant. If he is asked on a job or loan application if he has ever been convicted of a particular charge, he can lawfully say "no". This allows the individual to avoid the serious repercussions of having a felony conviction on their permanent record. A felony conviction results in severe restrictions, including being restricted from owning a firearm, not being allowed to vote, or to serve on a jury, among others. A Withhold is also of benefit in helping the individual avoid revocation of his driver license where that revocation is mandatory for conviction, such as in cases of drug possession.
If a person receives a conviction, that is they are adjudicated guilty, there is no opportunity to have their record sealed or expunged. In many cases, receiving a withhold of adjudication will allow the person to take the next step and permanently seal their record. For more information on sealing and expunging records, please see our sealing and expunging records section.
Choose Skilled Defense for Your Case
Tim Hessinger is an experienced criminal defense attorney serving the Tampa area. He is a former veteran prosecutor and extremely familiar with the criminal process in the Tampa Bay area. We do everything possible to obtain withholds of adjudication for our clients. A Tampa criminal defense attorney at the office would be pleased to meet with you to discuss criminal charges that you are facing and advise as to the best strategy for your defense.
Contact The Law Office of Timothy Hessinger today by calling (813) 501-2688.