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Zoey_ JD
Zoey_ JD, JustAnswer Criminal Law Mentor
Category: Criminal Law
Satisfied Customers: 23171
Experience:  Admitted to NYS Criminal defense bar in 1989. Extensive arraignment, hearing, trial experience.
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Whats the process to apply for a conditional discharge relating

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What's the process to apply for a conditional discharge relating to Nj 2c:35-10A(4)?

2c:35-10 is a disorderly person's offense in NJ, and while they are not considered crimes by the state, disorderly person's offenses can carry up to 6 months of jail time. Realistically speaking, if you have no previous contact with the criminal justice system, jail would be unlikely and you may very well be able to get a conditional discharge just for the asking of it. However, as criminal matters can have lifetime repercussions, it's always best to have a criminal lawyer. It's possible that your case has facts which could cause it to be dismissed outright, which would be a far better outcome than a conditional discharge.

If you don't wish to pay for a lawyer, you can go to court on your court date, plead NOT GUILTY to keep all of your rights open and learn what the state will offer you on this matter. If it sounds like a good deal to you, you can take back your not guilty plea and enter a plea of guilty to take it. If you don't get what you want, it will have to be negotiated, and that means a lawyer. Ask for a continuance and bring one on the next date.
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Customer: replied 5 years ago.

Fran, thanks. I have a couple of more questions.


(1) Is applying for a conditional discharge considered to be a plea of guilty?


(2) If I plead "not guilty", is conditional discharge an option for me to take?


Give me a few secs to compose the answer and I'll be right with you.

The NJ conditional discharge program involves taking a plea BUT if your probationary requirements were successfully completed your matter would be dismissed.

Here is the section of the law that defines the program. If it's your first contact with the law, you'd be eligible for it in New Jersey with a marijuana offense. Basically, you can get it one of two ways -- as a pre-plea offer or as a post plea offer. If the first, you would manage to avoid the suspension of your license that will otherwise occur.

The prosecutor has the discretion to decide for himself who gets that pre-plea offer. You could contact him prior to your court date or ask him in court for such a disposition before your arraignment, but again, to be 100% sure that you get what you want, it's best to have a lawyer do the negotiating.

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