DUI arrest being handcuffed by police in Palm Beach

Our Palm Beach DUI Defense Lawyers Recommend a Plea Bargain in Some Drunk Driving Cases

If you have been charged with driving under the influence (DUI) in Palm Beach, Florida, your DUI defense lawyer may be able to negotiate a plea bargain with the prosecutor. A plea bargain is an agreement where you plead guilty to a lesser charge in exchange for a more lenient sentence than if convicted of the original DUI charge.

Attorney Robert Malove has been protecting the rights of people accused of drunk driving since the mid-1980s. Robert is Florida Bar Board Certified as an “expert/specialist” in criminal trial law and a founding member of the National College for DUI Defense. If you face drunk driving charges in Palm Beach County, Robert is just a phone call away.

DUI Diversion Program for First Time Palm Beach DUI Offenders

In Palm Beach, first-time DUI offenders may be eligible for the county's DUI Diversion Program instead of traditional prosecution. This program allows you to reduce drunk driving charges to less serious reckless driving charges. If you successfully complete this pre-trial intervention program, you will not receive any points on your license.

To qualify, there must have been no crash or other aggravating factors, such as minors in the vehicle or prior offenses. You need a valid driver's license at the time of arrest. You cannot have prior felony convictions, be charged with additional felonies along with the DUI, or have failed previous diversion programs. 

Wet Reckless Plea Bargains for Second and Subsequent DUI Charges

A wet reckless plea means that you plead guilty to reckless driving involving alcohol, which is a second-degree misdemeanor and carries less serious consequences than drunk driving.  Your lawyer will explain the possible sentence to you before you decide whether to accept a wet reckless plea bargain.

Other DUI Plea Bargain Options in Palm Beach

The Palm Beach DUI Diversion Program and pleading guilty to a wet reckless charge are not your only plea bargain options. Your DUI defense lawyer may recommend the following:

  • Pleading to DUI with a withhold of adjudication, so it's not a conviction 
  • Agreeing to enroll in a treatment program in exchange for reduced jail time
  • Pleading to DUI but arguing for mitigation to avoid a license suspension

Ultimately, whether you can get a plea bargain will depend on your specific situation and factors like your blood alcohol level, whether there was an accident, your criminal history, and the prosecution's evidence against you. 

The Plea Bargain Process and How a Palm Beach DUI Defense Lawyer Helps

While Palm Beach takes drunk driving seriously, an experienced DUI defense lawyer may be able to get your charge reduced or even dropped through negotiated plea options.

Your lawyer will thoroughly review all the evidence against you, including any breath, blood, or field sobriety tests. They will look for any legal defenses or violations of your rights that could get the case dismissed. With a strong defense position, your lawyer can begin negotiations.

Your lawyer will discuss a potential plea deal with the prosecutor, proposing reduced charges or lighter sentencing recommendations. Prosecutors may agree if the plea bargain closes the case and avoids an unpredictable trial.

If a plea bargain is reached, your lawyer will explain all the terms and consequences. You must then enter the plea in court, admitting guilt to the agreed-upon charge. The judge will verify that you understand the plea and choose whether to accept it.

It May Not Be Too Late for a DUI Plea Bargain

The lawyers at the Law Offices of Robert David Malove never give up.  Even on the eve of trial, we continue to fight for our clients. For example, Robert represented a 26-year-old woman who was charged with drunk driving. Her breath test was nearly twice the legal limit. We were able to argue that the police lacked probable cause to make the arrest. On the day of trial, the state offered our client a reduction in charges from DUI Enhanced to reckless driving with no permanent criminal conviction. These charges can be sealed and expunged from her record.