Tuesday, August 27, 2013

When is a Plea Bargain Acceptable?

Many courts in the U.S. are burdened by a backlog of cases that have yet to reach a verdict. To expedite the process behind certain proceedings, many cases today have the option of reaching a “plea bargain” agreement. In this resolution, both parties agree on certain arrangements that are usually less severe than what the court may have in mind. However, take note that not all cases, as well as charges, are eligible for a plea bargain. cites three factors for a plea bargain to be the most viable resolution. First, the crime must not be serious enough to warrant severe punishment from the law. Second, the evidence must not be strong enough for the court to find a person guilty beyond reasonable doubt. Lastly, the likelihood of the person being found guilty must not be too strong.

In most cases, however, courts push through with plea bargains because they're overburdened by the amount of backlogs. Experts say only a tenth of criminal cases filed in the country proceed to trial. As long as the judicial system has lots of unresolved cases stuck in limbo, plea bargains may as well be a viable alternative to a lengthy and costly judicial process.

Friday, August 23, 2013

The Basics of North Carolina's Criminal Law

Being accused of a crime, especially if it is a serious crime like fraud or murder, is something that must be taken seriously. Criminal law is very black-and-white when it comes to dealing justice: everyone is considered innocent until proven guilty beyond reasonable doubt. That last phrase is very important because it means that even someone who is genuinely innocent can be on the receiving end of a jail sentence if the prosecution convinces the court that he or she is indeed guilty of the crime.

North Carolina's criminal law follows the same procedure and it only differs with other states' criminal laws on a few things. Like any other criminal law, North Carolina classifies a crime as either a misdemeanor (minor crime) or a felony (serious crime). Unlike other states, misdemeanors and felonies can be classified even further into several classes. These classes dictate the severity of the punishment to be administered by the court, from a lifetime sentence (Class A) to a few years in prison (Class J).

However, misdemeanors can be elevated into felonies depending on certain circumstances. In North Carolina, for instance, assault can be considered a felony if the crime was committed with a deadly weapon and the victim was seriously injured. Otherwise, the crime is considered as a misdemeanor, which might land the defendant with less than a year in prison and several fines to be paid.

Sunday, August 4, 2013

Where Does it Hurt: On Personal Injury

Nobody wants to be on the receiving end of deliberate bodily injury. Everybody has the right to be free from harm, yet serious accidents can happen anytime, leaving victims either grievously injured or nearly dead. Yet, all the safety equipment in the world combined can't stop mishaps from sprouting out of the blue.

Victims can't always be saved from harm, but that doesn't mean they're completely helpless after they've been disabled. If they believe that the damages caused to them arose from the negligence of another, then they can file a personal injury claim against the defendants. The goal of a personal injury claim is to let the defendant claim responsibility for the calamity and offer compensation to the victims.

Those looking to file a personal injury lawsuit should know that it's subjected to varying Statutes of Limitations, meaning there's a time limitation in filing for these lawsuits. Each state has it's restrictions, and they're typically between one to two years from the day of the accident. Note that victims of accidents should always prioritize their health before they start pursuing the one who caused their physical pain. Victims, while helpless during the accident, can receive compensation for the trouble they've gone through, and it's through filing a personal injury claim.