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utah criminal defense attorney Archives - Utah Criminal Defense, Divorce, and Personal Injury Attorney | Intermountain Legal

What IS a Plea In Abeyance in Utah?

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A Plea in Abeyance (or PIA) is an agreement between the defendant and the prosecutor in a criminal case. It involves the defendant and prosecutor agreeing to specific terms that the defendant will complete in order to prevent the charges from going on their criminal record.

Once, the defendant and prosecutor have come up with an agreement, the judge holds the agreement in place until all the agreed upon terms are completed.

Typical PIA terms may include:Plea in Abeyance in courtroom showing judge box with gavel.

  • – Paying a fine
  • – Completing some kind of community service
  • – Taking classes relevant to your charges
  • – Completing an evaluation and/or a treatment relevant to your charges

A Plea in Abeyance’s terms is usually a combination of the two or three terms listed above. However, it is rarely just one of the terms.

The pleas for any given charge will also vary person-to-person and county-to-county. An  PIA agreement for  someone in one county may differ from the agreement given to someone in another county. However, many PIAs are held for at least 6 to 12 months.


Is a PIA a conviction?


No. A PIA does not go on your record like a flat-out guilty plea does. It allows the judge to dismiss your charges once you’ve completed your end of the agreement.

Getting a Plea in Abeyance is similar to getting a speeding ticket and then going to traffic school in order to keep the ticket from going on your driving record.


Can I expunge a PIA?


Yes. Read our information about expungements here.

Click here, to read the official definition of a Plea in Abeyance in Utah.

This kind of plea deal is one of the most ideal outcomes other than a case dismissal. Hiring an attorney is the best way to go if you want to get a deal like a Plea in Abeyance.

Call us today (801) 990-4200

Orlando Police Officer Arrested for DUI; Becomes Belligerent

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An off duty Orlando Police Officer, Sean Gilhuly, was arrested Sunday for DUI and Criminal Mischief. A witness called 911 when a white Ford Explorer sat through two green-light cycles. The caller described the driver as being drunk, high, or something. Police responded to the scene where they found an open bottle of peach schnapps in the officer’s vehicle. You can find the story here. Read More

Biden Double Barrel

Poor Presidential Advice: Man Takes Joe Biden’s Advice – Ends Up with Weapons Charge

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What Doesn’t Work: Taking legal advice from Vice President Joe Biden: “If there’s ever a problem, just walk out on the balcony here…walk out and put that double-barrel shotgun and fire two blasts outside the house.” It doesn’t work because you might be charged with a felony if you actually do walk out of your house and discharge a firearm. See the true story here. Read More

Canadian Gang Signs & A Helpful Phrase | Utah Criminal Defense Attorney Tip of the Week

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What Doesn’t Work: Faking temporary deafness so you don’t have to answer police questions. If you start busting out pretend sign language, the officer is more likely to think you’re flashing some sort of Canadian gang signs, rather than think you’re hearing impaired. What Works: If at any time you feel you are being pressured by police, or you are uncomfortable by questions they are asking, say to them: “Am I being detained, or am I free to go?” If they say “detained” you should ask for a defense attorney and politely decline to answer any more questions. They must read you your rights at that point.  If they say “free to go,” you should say thank you and walk or drive away immediately.