Menu 
The MacNeil Firm Ltd.

Should I Try To Work With The Federal Authorities? What Good Will It Do Me?


If the government has a very strong case against you and we don’t think that we can beat the case at trial, then you may as well try to control the damage and negotiate a plea agreement with the authorities. This would likely result in more favorable sentencing terms than if you went to trial and were found guilty. We would only recommend this after a careful review and discussion of the evidence.

If you are considering becoming a confidential informant to the federal agents and participating in situations that would allow the agents to charge other people with crimes, you should be careful and not engage in these situations without the guidance of an attorney who will set limits and parameters for you. Otherwise, the government could test the limits of what you’re willing to do without there being any guarantee that you will benefit from your cooperation.

How Do Sentencing Guidelines Work In Federal Court? Am I Eligible For Probation?

Sentencing guidelines in federal court come in the form of a grid, wherein every offense has a number attached to it. This number can be increased or decreased based on a number of factors, including your criminal history. In the past, these guidelines were mandatory, but now they are only advisory, which means that a judge has within their discretion the choice to deviate from the guidelines. However, there are still mandatory minimums which the judges cannot work around.

I’ve Been Offered A Plea Bargain Instead Of Going To Trial In Federal Court. Should I Accept?

Whether or not you should accept a plea bargain will depend on the facts and circumstances surrounding your situation. If the prosecutor does not have a strong case against you and we think we can beat the case, then there isn’t a huge advantage to taking a plea agreement. If the plea agreement eliminates enhancements that would otherwise result in a harsher punishment, then you may want to consider accepting it. If the prosecutor has a strong case against you, then we would want to look at the terms of the agreement, including what exactly they are asking you to do, whether or not they are offering probation as opposed to prison time, and whether or not the conditions of the plea agreement fall within the sentencing guidelines.

Will I Serve My Whole Sentence In A Federal Case?

Generally, federal sentences in prison are served at 85 percent.

Why Should I Hire An Attorney Who Specifically Handles Federal Cases To Represent Me?

Federal cases differ significantly from state cases, so you want to make sure that you have an attorney who is familiar with the sentencing guidelines and procedures they’ll encounter in federal court. For someone who exclusively practices in state court, the federal system would be very foreign to them.

For more information on Working With Federal Authorities In A Case, a free initial consultation is your next best step. Get the information and legal answers you are seeking by calling (815) 290-9170 today.

Donald N. Macneil, Esq.

Get your questions answered - Call now for FREE case evaluation (815) 290-9170.

Request Free Case Evaluation