3 Major Benefits to Pleading in Abeyance

3 Major Benefits to Pleading in Abeyance

plea in abeyanceDealing with all the ins and outs of a courtroom can be daunting—especially when your record is on the line!

If you are faced with charges from a judge, it’s good to know that there are other options out there besides just pleading innocent or guilty.

What many people don’t realize is that there is another, sometimes better, option out there to ease the punishments of the court. It’s called a plea in abeyance.


What is a Plea in Abeyance?

According to Utah Code, a plea in abeyance means an order by a court, upon motion of the prosecution and the defendant, accepting a plea of guilty or of no contest from the defendant but not, at that time, entering judgment of conviction against him nor imposing sentence upon him on condition that he comply with specific conditions as set forth in a plea in abeyance agreement.

In other words, you agree to plead guilty or no contest, but you do not get convicted as long as you follow the agreement between you and the judge.


The Benefits of Pleading in Abeyance

This may seem counter-intuitive; I mean, who would want to plead guilty or no contest when they believe themselves to be innocent? This is a valid question, but there are several benefits to pleading in abeyance that you may not have considered before.


  1. Many offenses come with the result that your driver’s license is suspended for an extended period of time. If you agree to a plea in abeyance, that does not happen and you get to keep your license.
  2. You aren’t formally convicted. This means that it won’t show up on your record as long as you comply with the conditions set forth in the plea in abeyance agreement.
  3. If you comply with all the conditions in the agreement, and once the term of abeyance is run, the case can be dismissed completely.


Are There Any Downsides to Pleading in Abeyance?

There aren’t many. The main downside comes if you don’t comply with the plea in abeyance agreement. If you don’t comply, you don’t get another trial to explain your actions.

Because you already plead at the beginning of the plea in abeyance agreement, that pleading holds—even if you don’t comply. So, in the end, if you don’t comply, none of the benefits would apply to you and you wouldn’t get a trial to fix the issue.



So, if you don’t know what next step to take in your trial, contact us at 801-375-8800. We can provide you advice about pleading in abeyance.

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