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Utah 402 Reductions and Plea Agreements

Question:  If a prosecutor in Utah agreed to a 402 reduction as part of a plea bargain (plea agreement), does the 402 reduction happen automatically?

Answer:  Utah Code Ann. 76-3-402 provides that a person who successfully completes probation may make a motion to the court requesting that the court lower the degree of the conviction by one step or two steps.  This reduction is commonly called a "402 reduction."  As part of plea negotiations in Utah criminal cases, prosecutors sometimes agree that if a defendant successfully completes probation then the prosecutor will stipulate to a 402 reduction motion.  However, the reduction will not occur automatically.

Courts will not take action to reduce the level of the conviction without the filing of a formal motion.  The statute (Utah Code Ann. 76-3-402) also requires that the court make a finding that the reduction "is in the interest of justice."  In other words, even if a prosecutor stipulates to the motion, the judge still has to be convinced that the defendant deserves the reduction.  

Even if the prosecutor agreed to the reduction as part of a plea agreement, working with an experienced Utah criminal defense lawyer can help give you the best chance of obtaining that reduction.  Stephen Howard has successfully worked with clients in a variety of cases to obtain one-step and two-step 402 reductions.

If you have successfully completed probation, you may be eligible to have the level of your charge reduced.  This may mean having a felony reduced to a misdemeanor.  It can also, in some circumstances, speed up your eligibility for an expungement.

Contact us today for an initial consultation regarding a Utah 402 reduction.
 

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Serving Salt Lake, Davis, Weber, Utah, Cache, Tooele, Summit, Box Elder, and Wasatch Counties, and all of Utah.

Attorney Stephen Howard practices as part of the Canyons Law Group, LLC and Stephen W. Howard, PC.

Offices in Salt Lake and Davis Counties
560 South 300 East, Suite 200, Salt Lake City, UT 84111
952 S. Main St., Suite A, Layton, UT 84041

Call now to arrange for a confidential initial consultation with an experienced and effective Utah criminal defense lawyer.

In Salt Lake City, call 801-449-1409.
In Davis County, call 801-923-4345.

Stephen W. Howard, PC

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