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The Importance of A Withhold

Aggressive Trial Attorney With a Reputation for Success

No matter what you do when you are considering accepting a plea of guilty or no contest in a Florida criminal case, you need to make sure your attorney does everything in their power to see to it that you receive a withhold of adjudication.

A withhold of adjudication is not considered a conviction (adjudication) under Florida state law.  Now for purposes of immigration, a withhold is still considered a conviction (if you are not a US citizen and you are charged with a crime you need to consult with an immigration attorney in addition to a criminal defense attorney).  But if you are interested in having your record sealed upon closure of your case and completion of your sentence (assuming the charge can be sealed), having a withhold may enable you to clear your arrest record.

For felony charges, a withhold WILL NOT make you a convicted felon.  This is very important for employment purposes.

In conclusion, if you are looking at accepting a guilty or no contest plea in a criminal case, talk to your criminal defense attorney about a withhold of adjudication.

Eric Matheny is a criminal defense attorney serving Miami-Dade, Broward, and Palm Beach.