What Is Deferred Adjudication Under Texas Law?
There are two types of probation in Texas: deferred adjudication probation and regular probation. Both types require the probationer to report to their probation officer, take drug tests, complete community service, and take counseling classes. The main difference between the two types of probation is the legal outcome. If a person successfully completes deferred adjudication probation, then they will not end up with a conviction on their record; but even successful completion of regular probation will still result in a criminal conviction on your permanent record. In addition, a person who successfully completes deferred adjudication probation might be eligible to get the case sealed through an order of non-disclosure; this is not an option with regular probation.
The difference between the two types of probation is something that a person must consider when evaluating the possible outcomes of their case. Deferred Adjudication probation should not be confused with deferred disposition, which is a possible outcome on a Class C Offense such as a moving violation (e.g. speeding ticket, public intoxication). It also should not be confused with a deferred prosecution agreement, which is an agreement between a prosecutor and defendant to defer prosecution on a case. Deferred adjudication is formal probation, which means the individual must report regularly to their probation officer and the probation department, as well as abide by the conditions of their probation.
If an individual’s DWI case goes to trial and the jury convicts and sentences them to 45 days in jail, the judge or jury could choose to probate that sentence. If that were to be the case, then the individual would be given probation in lieu of serving jail time; this is an example of how someone receives regular probation. Deferred adjudication probation is not a sentence that a jury can assess after a trial; it is only given to someone who either pleads guilty to a judge without a plea agreement, or who makes a plea bargain agreement with the prosecutor for the deferred adjudication outcome of the case. Following the successful completion of deferred adjudication probation, an individual will be able to avoid having the conviction go on their record. As a result, they will not be legally required to report the conviction on certain documents, such as employment or professional licensure applications.
Can I Get Deferred Adjudication For My DWI Charge Under The New Law In Texas?
Effective September 1, 2019, individuals convicted of DWI may be eligible for deferred adjudication probation. This change in the law will significantly impact the way criminal justice is administered throughout the state of Texas. The deferred adjudication option was written out of the statute two decades ago based on lobbying by Mothers Against Drunk Driving and other victims’ rights advocates.
For more information on Deferred Adjudication Probation In Texas, a free case evaluation is your next best step. Get the information and legal answers you are seeking by calling (512) 478-9898 today.
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