Does The Judge Always Have To Approve The Plea Bargain If It Is Accepted?
The judge does not always have to approve the plea bargain if it is accepted. In Wisconsin, the judge will consider what the state and defense attorney has suggested, but ultimately they have the authority to determine your sentence. For example, you might agree to probation for a Class 4 felony, but the judge would have the authority to choose to sentence you to one to three years in prison. Prior to a full sentencing, there might be a pre-sentence investigation, which will essentially provide a biography of you to the judge so they can determine whether the plea is appropriate. If the judge sees five offenses that he wasn’t made aware of beforehand, then he might reject the plea and sentence you to time in prison. This is one reason it is helpful to have a defense attorney who knows the judge well enough to predict whether they will accept the plea or reject it and order a harsher sentence.
Can A Guilty Plea Be Withdrawn?
A guilty plea can only be withdrawn after the sentencing under certain circumstances. When you enter a plea and are sentenced by the judge, the judge will tell you that you have 30 days within which to withdraw your plea but that you must first state the reasons why the judge should grant that withdrawal. There are some Constitutional due process guidelines that dictate that a plea should be taken knowingly and voluntarily. This means that if someone didn’t explain to you that there would be immigration consequences associated with taking a plea, then that would be grounds for an automatic reversal of the guilty plea. As a result, your sentence would be vacated. At every court hearing, there will be a court reporter who documents everything that is said, which means you won’t be able to claim that you were unaware of something which you stated you understood in court.
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