Deferred Disposition as a Clean Slate for Juvenile Offenders in NJ
Depending on the Charges a Juvenile is Facing, they may be Eligible for a Deferred Disposition in Ocean and Monmouth County, NJ
In New Jersey, institutional systems are set up to support and protect the well-being of young people. Their healthy growth in family and society is the central pillar of even the criminal justice system. When a young person is involved in a minor crime, a skilled juvenile defense attorney can help the charged youth work with the court to engage in an alternate consequence through a juvenile diversionary program. This approach, called deferred disposition, includes the court setting aside the final judgment on the charge until alternative measures have been engaged. Correctly completed, deferred disposition results in the youth’s charge being dismissed. If the youth breaks any of the terms of deferred disposition, which usually include parole, excellent school attendance, community service, random drug testing, and restitution for damaged property or injury caused, the court will move forward with charging the individual.
Deferred disposition allows a first-time youth offenders a chance to express remorse for their actions, engage in correctional activities, and move forward with their life in a demonstratively productive way without serving jail time or carrying a hugely damaging criminal record. Our team at Bronzino Law Firm has scores of experience representing youth offenders to negotiate the most beneficial outcome for their future and positive contribution to society. Contact us today for a free and confidential consultation at (732) 812-3102 and learn more about how a deferred disposition works below.
Eligibility Criteria for a Deferred Disposition in New Jersey
In order for a youth to apply for deferred disposition, they must meet three eligibility requirements. The youth must be under 15 years old and have no prior record. Additionally, the nature of the crime for which they are charged must be minor.
Deferred Disposition as an Option for Minor Offenses
The minor offenses allowed for a youth to pursue deferred disposition include mostly non-violent offenses. If a youth has been charged with possession of small amounts of drugs or drug paraphernalia, trespassing, shoplifting, disorderly conduct, or some cases of simple assault, they may apply for deferred disposition. Again, even if a minor has been charged with one of the above offenses, they may only pursue the deferred disposition route if it is their first offense. A youth that has been offered deferred disposition in the past and after successful completion of its conditions, has had their charge dismissed will not be eligible for deferred disposition a second time.
Steps to Apply for a Deferred Disposition
Deferred disposition can be obtained through the youth’s juvenile defense attorney. The attorney must make a case with the judge that the youth’s participation in a juvenile diversionary program is the best outcome for the young person’s well-being and future, their family, and society as a whole. In order to prove the efficacy of such a deferred disposition for the youth’s future prospects, the young offender must show remorse and an honest desire to function productively in society.
Judge’s Considerations When Granting a Juvenile Deferred Disposition in Ocean County NJ
Multiple factors are taken into consideration by the judge when deciding whether to charge the individual in the traditional criminal justice system or move forward with a deferred disposition. The judge first looks at eligibility factors, such as whether the youth is under 15, and whether this is the juvenile’s first offense. The judge will then consider the details of the crime committed, including the extent of the damage and injury the youth caused. Then, the judge will carefully consider how participating in a diversionary program will affect the youth’s best interests and future, how likely their family is to support the rehabilitative process that is the goal of such a program, whether individual social or psychological needs the youth has are addressed by the program, and whether the young person would pose a threat to society by remaining on the streets instead of a juvenile detention center.
What Happens if a Minor Gets a Deferred Disposition in Ocean County NJ?
If a juvenile is granted deferred disposition and they successfully carry out the terms of the disposition without incident, the judge will dismiss their charge. In essence, the case will be dropped, and the offense will not go on a youth’s juvenile record.
Contact Our Defense Lawyers to Help Your Child Obtain a Deferred Disposition in Toms River, NJ
When it comes to minor charges against first-time youth offenders, the importance of having a juvenile defense attorney cannot be overstated. A skilled and experienced lawyer will help your youth move forward in a productive way with their life by convincing the judge to consider their remorse and potential as contributing New Jersey citizens. They will also help you and your youth prepare for a successful diversionary program. We at Bronzino Law Firm are committed to making sure youth in Belmar, Manasquan, Toms River, Brick, Holmdel, Freehold, Middletown, Wall, Howell, Tinton Falls, Point Pleasant, and throughout Ocean and Monmouth County have a fair chance at a bright future, regardless of early mistakes. Contact us at (732) 812-3102 to set up a free consultation and learn how we can help.