Although the two terms no contest plea and guilty plea may seem to mean the same thing, they are actually quite different from a legal standpoint. The term “no contest” is used when a defendant accepts the conviction that is being handed down to them but does not actually admit guilt. Conversely, when a defendant pleads “guilty,” then they are willingly admitting to the fact that they have committed the crime.

If you have been charged with a crime and need legal advice, you need to contact the law offices of the Goodwin Law Group, PLLC of Las Vegas, NV, and ask to schedule a free consultation with one of our experienced attorneys.

What happens if I Plead No Contest?

If you decide to plead no contest to a criminal charge, the judge will ask you specific questions to ensure that you understand that you are willingly giving up some of your rights and what will result when you enter your plea. The judge will also ask if you understand the consequences of the plea you are making and that a no contest plea is considered the same as a guilty plea but without admitting guilt. Finally, the judge will also be certain that you have not been coerced and that you understand the potential penalties that you face by pleading no contest.

What is the Main Difference Between a No Contest and Guilty Plea?

A no contest plea and guilty plea basically bring about the same consequences in the end. You waive the same rights and can end up with the same sentence as if you had pleaded guilty. However, in Nevada, the main difference between a no contest plea and a guilty plea is their admissibility in civil court proceedings. If you plead no contest to a criminal charge, that plea cannot be used against you if a civil lawsuit occurs as a result of that same crime. In other words, the victim of a crime can use a no contest plea against a defendant in order to prove their civil lawsuit.

Is an Alford Plea the Same as a No Contest Plea in Nevada?

Yes, in the state of Nevada, an Alford plea is the same as a no contest plea. Both, please allow a court to treat the accused as if they are guilty without the defendant actually having to admit guilt. As stated previously, the benefit of a no contest or Alford plea is that it cannot be used against you in civil court proceedings.

How Can I Know Which is the Best Plea For Me?

If you have been charged with a crime and are uncertain as to how you should plead, you need to seek qualified legal representation immediately. The attorneys of the Goodwin Law Group, PLLC of Las Vegas, NV, can assist you in determining what would be the best plea for your individual situation and circumstances. Contact our law offices by calling (702) 472 9594 to schedule a free consultation.