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WHAT IS A SOC IN WASHINGTON STATE?

Close-up of woman's hands during counseling meeting with a professional therapist. Box of tissues and a hand of counselor blurred in the front.

A SOC is a “Stipulated Order of Continuance” in Washington State.

In some jurisdictions like Kitsap County, Washington, SOC’s are referred to as Pretrial Diversion Agreements, however, in cities like Seattle and Tacoma, SOC is the term normally used.

A SOC is a contract between the alleged defendant and the prosecutor for a criminal case in Washington State.  It is a type of diversion agreement that puts your criminal case in limbo for a period of 6 months up to 5 years.  During that “limbo” period, you are placed on pretrial probation, either supervised or unsupervised, and are required to do certain affirmative conditions to meet the obligations of your agreement.  At the end of the time period, so long as you met every condition of the SOC contract you agreed to, all charges in your case will be dismissed.

What are the Benefits of a SOC for a Criminal Charge in Washington State?

The biggest benefit of a SOC in Washington is the fact the client is never convicted of a crime.  The client never admits any guilt whatsoever and can then go on in life, answering “no” to ever been convicted of a crime on all future employment and background checks.

What are the Drawbacks of a SOC?

Once you enter into a SOC, you must successfully complete the SOC.  Failure to complete the SOC will result in an automatic conviction on your record.  This means you give up your right to proceed with a jury trial when you enter into a SOC.  So, when determining if the SOC is a right fit for you, you must first determine if you can abide by all the affirmative conditions the prosecutor is demanding.

How do I know if I’m Eligible for a SOC in Washington State?

A SOC is a negotiated offer between your defense attorney and the prosecutor.  Your eligibility will depend on the facts in your case, the jurisdiction your case is out of, and the expertise of the defense attorney handling your case.  Call us at 888-541-2416 for a free case evaluation to determine if your case may be eligible for a SOC.

About our Firm

Associate attorney Julia Simmons located in our downtown Seattle office has successfully negotiated thousands of SOCs and PDAs out of King County, Pierce County, Kitsap County, and Lewis county for crimes such as DUI, domestic violence, assault, malicious mischief, theft, driving on a suspended license, resisting arrest, trespass, and various boating and illegal fishing charges.  Call today for a free case evaluation.

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