Written by attorney Richard Timothy Jones

Deferred prosecutions in Travis County - Brief Overview

A deferred prosecution is seldom if ever granted in a felony case. In misdemeanor court a deferred prosecution is a contract between the state and the defendant. The state agrees to dismiss and not refile the case if the person does not violate the conditions of the agreement. These agreements usually last for a year and the defendant agrees not to violate the law. Usually the defendant also agrees to perform community service hours and attend counseling. Deferred prosecutions are commonly used in theft and assault cases. It is important to remember that the case is dismissed upfront the day the agreement is signed. It will not be refiled if the defendant complies with the conditions. There is no supervision and there are no monetary costs except for the costs of required classes. Also, because the case is dismissed the defendant will no longer have to be on bond or attend court. Unlike a deferred adjudication which is a type of probation, a deferred prosecution can later be expunged or removed from a person's record. Most of the time a deferred prosecution is a good compromise. An attorney is essential in explaining the benefits of a deferred prosecution and working out the details.

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