Fighting To Keep You Out Of Jail
It is no surprise that the criminal courts in New Jersey are extremely busy; because of that high volume, courts pursue alternatives to traditional trials for many people. Although the criminal justice system takes all crimes very seriously, diversionary programs allow courts to act more efficiently while offering people leniency when they need it most.
The Law Office of Andy Weinstein, Esq., helps clients across Montclair and New York City pursue diversionary programs. We understand that many circumstances can lead people down paths they never wanted to go. Our team of criminal defense attorneys has more than 30 years of combined experience defending and helping them pursue the leniency of the diversionary programs in New Jersey.
What Are The Diversionary Programs In New Jersey?
The New Jersey diversionary programs are alternatives to criminal trial available to first time offenders charged with certain classes of crime. There are three primary programs, and they are:
- Pretrial intervention (PTI): Defendants identified as eligible for pretrial intervention move out of the traditional courtroom, and directly into a supervised setting, that may include drug testing and restitution.
- Conditional Discharge: This is a diversionary program offered in New Jersey to individuals charged with Disorderly Persons offenses involving controlled dangerous substances.
- Conditional Dismissal: Like a Conditional Discharge, a Conditional Dismissal is a diversionary program for those charged with a Disorderly Person offense, however, these are reserved for nondrug related crime.
Additionally, any defendant who has gone through a diversionary program is ineligible for a second opportunity. However, should you meet the requirements, all of these programs can keep a criminal conviction off your record.
Helping You Understand Diversionary Programs
The complexity of the criminal justice system means that you will probably have a lot of questions about diversionary programs. We understand. We are here to answer them for you.
What are some common charges that result in a diversionary program?
Most people eligible for diversionary programs are first-time offenders with misdemeanor charges. A few of the most common charges that can lead to placement in a diversionary program include:
Juvenile offenders may also qualify for offenses such as vandalism, shoplifting, truancy and underage drinking.
How can I qualify for a New Jersey diversionary program?
In New Jersey, you must meet a few criteria for the court to consider your application for pretrial diversion. These criteria include:
- You have never been in a pretrial diversionary program.
- You have never had conditional discharge or conditional dismissal.
- Your charge in question is not a petty disorderly person or a disorderly person’s charge.
Before approving you for a diversionary program, a pretrial services program officer will also research your background and decide the duration of your supervision.
Which factors can count against me getting into a diversionary program?
You might not get into such a program if:
- Your criminal charge has a sentence including jail time.
- You have a period of ineligibility for parole.
- You have a previous conviction on your record.
One or more of these conditions requires permission from the prosecuting attorney to apply for a diversionary program.
Will I get my charges dismissed?
If you successfully complete a diversionary program according to the conditions set forth by the officer, then yes, the court will dismiss your charges. If you do not complete the program successfully, the court will not.
Skilled Former Prosecutor Who Can Defend You
Judges do not grant alternative sentencing to everyone. You should have a skilled New Jersey criminal defense lawyer who can persuade the court why a diversionary program is the best fit for you. As a former prosecutor, attorney Andy Weinstein has seen firsthand what prompts district attorneys or judges to choose diversionary programs over criminal sentences.
Ask For A Criminal Defense Attorney’s Help Today
The sooner you contact us, the sooner our Montclair attorneys and New York attorneys can begin trying to get you into a diversionary program. Please call us at 973-852-3614 or send us an email to schedule a free, confidential initial consultation with one of our team members.