First Offenses

America is known as the land of second chances, and Georgia follows that principle. In our state, there are several ways for first-time offenders to avoid convictions. It's even possible for many first-time offenders to get their records expunged (restricted).

At Burns Law Group, PC, in Canton, we are dedicated to helping people minimize the consequences of criminal arrests. We are thoroughly knowledgeable with the various options that can help people charged with crimes to avoid conviction and criminal records.

Remember, a criminal conviction can follow you for the rest of your life if it is not handled properly. Call us today at 770-628-1131 for a free consultation.

Alternatives To Conviction And Jail

Our attorneys have years of experience in the criminal justice system of Cherokee County and other jurisdictions in North Georgia. Judges and prosecutors know us by name. They respect our integrity and trust us implicitly. We work regularly with courts and prosecutors to obtain outcomes that help our clients avoid jail time, convictions and criminal records.

The programs for first-time offenders that are available on our area are described below:

  • Georgia First Offender Act — The purpose of this law is to provide first-time offenders a chance to learn from their mistakes. If you qualify, the charge against you will be placed on hold. Upon successful completion of your program, the charge will be dismissed and your record will be sealed (though it will still be available to people in the criminal justice system).
  • Conditional discharge — This is another outcome that is similar to the Georgia First Offender Act. You can obtain a conditional discharge even if you have already received a First Offender outcome.
  • Pretrial diversion — If you have no prior criminal record, the victim of the crime does not object to your petition, and you meet other conditions, your charge will be placed on hold. You will be under supervision, and may have to complete restitution or community service. When you complete the program, the charge will be dismissed or result in nolle prosequi. You can then petition for an expungement.
  • Drug Accountability Court — This alternative sentencing program enables drug offenders to obtain counseling and treatment for chemical dependency problems. Upon successful completion, an offender will be placed on probation and will avoid jail time.
  • Juvenile cases — Whenever possible, Georgia takes a rehabilitative approach with juvenile offenders. If your teenager has done something foolish, we will work diligently to minimize the consequences, including preserving your child's educational and career options.

Learn About Your Options

For a free consultation with a lawyer about a first offense case, contact Burns Law Group, PC, by calling 770-628-1131.