What is an ACD (Adjournment in Contemplation of Dismissal)?

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"I had just recently graduated from law school and was awaiting my bar exam when I was charged with 3 class D felonies. Adam was incredibly invested and attentive from the beginning of my case. He greatly exceeded my expectations in how often he took the time to come visit me in jail with updates. He calmly talked my wife through the issues and helped her understand what was going on. Adam believed in me and took the case to jury trial in Monroe County Court. His courtroom performance was excellent, combined with a solid grasp of litigation procedures and law. The jury verdict was not guilty on the 3 counts. I WAS DISCHARGED AND ACQUITTED ON ALL COUNTS. Worst-case scenario I was looking at 21 years in prison, and instead today I have my life back."

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An Adjournment in Contemplation of Dismissal is a way for prosecutors and courts to finish a case without convicting somebody.

Let's say you are charged with petit larceny (shoplifting), and it is your first offense. Most prosecutors and judges aren't looking for ways to convict you and give you a criminal record for the rest of your life, especially if you are doing something productive with your life (i.e., you are in school, or working, or raising kids, etc.).

Instead of going through the process of a trial, the prosecutor may offer to adjourn the case for a period of time (6 or 12 months, depending on the charge), after which it will be automatically dismissed if you fulfilled certain obligations. In other words, they are going to Adjourn (your case) in Contemplation of Dismissal. It's an ACD.

In some cases, the ACD might only be offered if you agree to perform community service or get counseling.

ACD's are not offered in every case, and an experienced attorney will know when - and how - to ask for one. If you are charged with a crime in or near Rochester, NY, call us at (585) 485-0025. The call is free.

The Militello Law firm
2480 Browncroft Boulevard
Rochester, New York 14625
Phone: (585) 485-0025 Fax: (585) 286-3128