THE WITH-HOLD OF ADJUDICATION - Special Sentencing in Florida for First Time Non-Violent Offenders
Florida Criminal Courts - The With-hold of Adjudication is a special area where you plea to a charge, but not adjudicated.
THE WITH-HOLDFlorida State Courts have a unique aspect, you can avoid being adjudicated for a crime, yet still enter a plea in the Court. For a first time non-violent offender, (if the State and Judge agree) may be granted a "with-hold" of adjudication, where the Defendant avoids getting a record. If you don't violate your probation, the Court allows you to plea "no-contest" and grants to a with-hold of adjudication, then you can likely get the entire case sealed by the Court at a later date. A with-hold and a no contest plea is a great deal for any Defendant, but it requires agreement from all parties and usually applies ONLY to 1st time non-violent offenders. Certain statutes (DUI and Stalking) forbid the Court from granting a with-hold of adjudication under any circumstances.
HOW TO MESS UP A WITH-HOLD OF ADJUDICATIONThe key for any defendant who the Court "with-holds" adjudication is to avoid violating probation at all costs. There are at least a dozen rules for anyone on probation. This includes regularly reporting to your probation officer on-time, maintaining a stable residence, not testing positive for drugs, maintaining a stable residence, and not leaving the County without permission. Anytime one violates these rules, probation produces a report, then the Judge usually issues an arrest warrant. If the Court later finds an willful violation of probation, then any with-hold becomes a formal adjudication. The moral of the story, if the Court gives you a break and with-holds adjudication, don't mess up while you are on probation and then get adjudicated.