You probably know how a plea deal works. In exchange for a lighter sentence or reduced charges, you will have to plead guilty. It means that you will be sentenced for the crime you have admitted to committing.
In such a case, can you appeal the sentence handed to you even after pleading guilty? Well, it all depends on the circumstances of your case and the terms of the plea deal. Here is what you need to know.
Entering a plea deal waives some of your rights
Usually, if you accept a plea deal, you waive some of your rights, such as the right to appeal or have a jury trial. Therefore, it may be difficult to appeal the sentence you get if you accept a plea deal voluntarily and knowingly.
When can you appeal?
In the interests of justice, it is possible to appeal the sentence you receive with your plea deal in some cases. For instance, if you were lied to about the terms of the plea deal, or you agreed to it involuntarily, you may be able to appeal your sentence. Additionally, if you were mentally impaired when accepting the deal or if the sentence you were handed down is more than what was agreed upon in the plea deal, you could be allowed to appeal. Similarly, if you were denied the effective assistance of counsel, that may also be the basis of an appeal.
When the court agrees with you, the likely remedy will be to undo or withdraw your plea. The prosecution may then offer you a new deal, or proceed to try you on your original charges.
Before agreeing to a plea deal
It is important to know your legal rights and what you are getting yourself into before you consent to a plea deal. Depending on the facts of our case, you might not need the plea deal in the first place, and you could be better off fighting your charges.