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Can I Get a Plea Bargain in My OWI Case?

If you get charged with an OWI, you may be offered a plea bargain. A Des Moines OWI lawyer can help you evaluate offers from the prosecution to see if they are fair. We can also help you fight for a plea bargain and reduced punishments in the first place. This is yet another reason to want experienced lawyers on your side when facing criminal charges.

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What Are Potential Punishments for an OWI?

The punishments for an OWI are often quite harsh, even if you have clean criminal and driving records. A first-time offender faces potential penalties like:

  • Up to a year in jail
  • A fine of up to $1,250
  • A revocation of your license for up to 180 days

Even if you only get your driver’s license revoked for a while, think about how inconvenient that is. You may also need to install an ignition interlock device in your vehicle. That can be embarrassing. This is why many drivers attempt to secure a plea bargain when charged with an OWI.

Does a Plea Bargain Reduce Punishments or Charges?

A plea bargain can reduce both. In some cases, you are still charged with an OWI, but taking a plea bargain can take a punishment like jail time off the table. If you are a first-time offender, you could also take a deal that requires you to plead guilty in exchange for going through Iowa OWI school instead of facing criminal penalties.

An even better plea bargain results in lesser punishments and lesser charges though. Pleading guilty to an OWI means that it stays on your record. That can affect your insurance costs and encourage harsher penalties if you do end up getting charged with another OWI in the future. However, if your charge is reduced to something like reckless driving, you don’t have to worry about that. Potential punishments are far less severe and your record is not as adversely affected.

When Should I Take a Plea Bargain?

You should take a reasonable plea bargain if you are not confident that you can win in court. If you are facing a jail sentence and pleading out would help you avoid that, it’s probably a good deal.

You should always consult your attorney though. It’s possible that you are being offered a deal because the prosecution does not have much of a case or they know that your rights were violated. In scenarios like these, you may be better off going to trial.

Can a Lawyer Help Me Get a Plea Bargain?

Your lawyer can negotiate with the prosecution to secure a plea bargain and reduce your sentence. There are no guarantees and these talks can fail if the prosecutor thinks that they have a slam dunk case against you, but you can be sure that we will do everything that we can to fight for a better deal for you.

Contact Our Law Firm

So if you are facing OWI charges, take them seriously. Contact Herting Law, PLLC and tell us more about your situation. We’ll do our best to get your charges dismissed or help you negotiate for a plea deal.

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