Diversion, such as Pretrial Diversion (PTD), Pretrial Intervention (PTI), or Broward's Misdemeanor Diversion Program, may be a good resolution for your case.
But what happens when you complete the program?
Each county is different because diversion programs are run by the state, not by the court. In Miami-Dade, misdemeanor offenders enter the Pretrial Diversion (PTD) program, either run by the Advocate Program or Court Options, both private companies.
PTD programs exist for a wide array of misdemeanor offenses. Program length can be 3 months for first-time offenders and up to 6 months for offenders who may have a few prior arrests but are still eligible for diversion. In Broward County, however, in order to participate in the Misdemeanor Diversion Program (run by the Department of Corrections), a participant must have no prior arrest history.
Broward's Misdemeanor Diversion Program is 3 months in length.
Conditions may include community service hours and classes. Diversion programs cost a few hundred dollars and the fees must be paid as part of the program requirements.
For misdemeanor domestic violence offenses, the program length will be longer and the conditions more focused around anger management. In Miami-Dade County, for instance, the program length can be up to 26 weeks. You will also be required to attend court regularly for what's known as the Judicial Review Calendar.
For felony Pretrial Intervention (PTI), the program length will be 6 months in Miami-Dade County to 1 year in Broward.
Upon completion, your case will be dismissed provided you have completed all conditions successfully.
For Miami-Dade County PTD participants, your case will simply be dismissed upon the completion of your program. You will not be noticed for court and should periodically check on the status of your case online. If you do not complete the conditions and "bounce out," only then will you get a notice for court.
For PTI participants in both Miami-Dade and Broward, you will be noticed for court upon the completion of your program. It is on that court date that the state will dismiss your charges.
For the Misdemeanor Diversion Program, you will be noticed for your court date on the day you accept the program. Your completion date is set for 90 days after you begin.
Once you complete diversion, your case will be dismissed. In most instances, unless you a prior conviction of any kind on your record, you will be eligible to expunge your arrest since the case will have been dismissed.