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Maryland Probation Before Judgment

Maryland’s probation before judgment, or PBJ as it is commonly referred to, is a possible outcome in a criminal, DUI/DWI and traffic case in Maryland.  A PBJ can be obtained during plea negotiations with the Assistant State’s Attorney and court or by sentence of the court after a guilty plea or finding of guilty after a trial.  In order to receive a PBJ, the defendant must first be found guilty.  Then, the court will strike the guilty finding and grant the defendant the benefit of a PBJ.

Am I eligible for a Probation Before Judgment?

Maryland Criminal Procedure §6-220 limits when a defendant can receive a probation before judgment.  The most common limitations are for: (1) a second DUI/DWI if the defendant has had one in the past 10 years, (2) a second Controlled Dangerous Substance offense, and (3) serious crimes that carry statutory minimum penalties.

A sentence of probation before judgment can include a period of supervised probation, unsupervised probation, a fine, and/or time served.

Do I give up any rights by accepting a Probation Before Judgment?

In order to receive a PBJ, a defendant must give up their right to file an appeal because a PBJ is not a conviction.

If I get a Probation Before Judgment, do I get any MVA points?

A PBJ in Maryland is not a guilty conviction.  Therefore, for a traffic violation or DUI/DWI no points are attached to the defendant’s driving record.  Additionally, the defendant can report that they were not convicted of a crime.

Can I expunged a Probation Before Judgment?

Under Maryland Law, Criminal Procedure §10-105(c)(2)(I)(II), a PBJ can only be expunged after probation is discharged or 3 years after probation was granted, whichever date is later.  If your probation was discharged in less than three years, you may file a motion for a good cause exception and see if the court will grant it.

The most common situation where you are not entitled to an expungement are if: (1) you received a probation before judgment of a specified public nuisance crime and since then you have been convicted of another crime other than a minor traffic violation or are a defendant in a pending criminal proceeding, or (2) you received a disposition of probation before judgment or guilty for a violation of driving under the influence (DUI) or driving while impaired (DWI).

Schedule a Free Carroll County DUI Attorney Consultation

The Law Office of Ross W. Albers is located in Westminster, Maryland.  Carroll County Criminal Defense Attorney Ross W. Albers is a former Baltimore City prosecutor.  If you are a defendant in a Maryland criminal, DUI/DWI or traffic case and have questions regarding receiving or expunging a PBJ, then call Maryland Attorney Ross W. Albers for a free consultation.

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