New Jersey offers persons charged with marijuana-related offenses two kinds of “diversion” programs. The first kind is the conditional discharge. We discuss the conditional discharge in detail on a different page on this site. The other kind of diversion program available in New Jersey is Pretrial Intervention. Pretrial Intervention is typically referred to as just PTI.

Assuming a diversion is available, the particular type of diversion, conditional discharge or PTI, will depend on the specific marijuana-related charge. If the charge is just simple possession of marijuana in a quantity of fifty grams or less, then the potential diversion will be the conditional discharge. When the quantify exceeds fifty grams, or if it is alleged that the marijuana was intended for distribution, or actually distributed, then the only potential diversion that New Jersey offers is PTI. Put differently, PTI is available in New Jersey only on indictable offenses. And conditional discharges are available in New Jersey only on non-indictable charges. These non-indictable charges will almost always be handled in municipal court.

Persons admitted into PTI are placed under probation supervision. Normally they are not required to enter a guilty plea. Normally they do not have a trial. The probation supervision comes with conditions. These conditions will include payment of fines. (Technically they are “assessments,” and not “fines”; fines apply only when a person has been convicted. In practical terms, there is no difference between an assessment and a fine.) Conditions will also include submitting to drug tests when requested by the probation department. Upon successful completion of the probation supervision period and satisfaction of all conditions, the charge or charges are dismissed. The arrested person will still have a record of an arrest, but she will not have a record of a conviction. And even that arrest record can be expunged at a later time.

Whether PTI is available at all depends on many factors. The person's past record weighs heavily. The particular charge is important. PTI is more readily available with simple possession of marijuana charges, as opposed to possession with intent to distribute, or actual distribution of marijuana.

New Jersey PTI is often a good outcome. That is not always true, however. A straight dismissal, or even a not guilty verdict after a trial if available, is better for various reasons. Firstly, the dismissal or trial acquittal is eligible to be expunged immediately. There is no waiting period. Secondly, under New Jersey law, a person can receive a New Jersey diversion only once per lifetime. Therefore if the State has a weak case, using up that once-in-a-lifetime diversion could make it unavailable if needed for a subsequent arrest. Thirdly, others will assume that the person who received PTI was actually guilty, and just got off on a technicality. These assumptions may exist even for the dismissal or the jury acquittal, but the assumptions may be not as strong. For all these reasons, it is often wrong to consider the decision to accept or reject PTI a “no-brainer.” Rather, it is a decision that should be discussed fully with an experienced New Jersey marijuana law lawyer.

NJ Marijuana Lawyer and NJ Criminal Defense Lawyer NJ Law Offices of Allan MarainAllan Marain and Norman Epting, Jr. are New Jersey Marijuana lawyers. Between them, they have represented clients charged with marijuana-related offenses in New Jersey for over seventy-five years. They have successfully guided hundreds of persons charged in New Jersey with marijuana-related offenses into PTI. They are ready to review your charges, and discuss whether PTI is the right decision for you.

If you have been charged in New Jersey with one or more marijuana-related offenses, call them. They can help.

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“He has erected a multitude of New Offices, and sent hither swarms of officers to harass our people and eat out their substance.

--The Declaration of Independence


“Chris Christie is a disgrace not just to NJ and the USA, but to humanity as a whole. His refusal to acknowledge the majority in this country of cannabis supporters is appalling. He is literally the cancer killing our country and we need to bury this sack of garbage in a landfill FAR FAR away from politics.”

--Jason Mueller, June 30, 2015,
Responding on Yahoo! to Chris Christie announcement
that he is seeking to be President of the United States

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Reefer, pot, weed, grass, Mary Jane, cannabis, ganja, dope, marijuana, marihuana: Call it what you will, spell it as you please, we will defend marijuana charges against you with the benefit of approximately seventy years combined experience handling marijuana and marijuana-related arrests. Centrally located in Middlesex County, New Jersey marijuana lawyers Marain and Epting also handle marijuana arrests and charges arising in Bergen, Burlington, Hunterdon, Mercer, Monmouth, Morris, Ocean, Somerset, Sussex, Union, and Warren Counties. Their cases have included marijuana arrests at the Sports Complex, and at the PNC Arts Center in Holmdel. Other frequent hot spots for marijuana arrests handled include Seabright, and Seaside Heights. Rutgers University arrests in New Brunswick and Piscataway number among the frequent fliers. Towns that we cover include Asbury Park, Bedminster, Belleville in Essex County, Bergenfield, Berkeley Heights, Bernards Township, Bernardsville in Union county, Bogota, Bound Brook, Branchburg, Brick in Monmouth County, Bridgewater, Clifton, Clinton in Hunterdon County, Closter, Cranbury, Cranford, Cresskill in Bergen County, Deal, Demarest, Denville, Dover in Morris County, Dumont, Dunellen, East Brunswick in Middlesex County, East Rutherford, East Windsor, Edison in Middlesex County, Elizabeth, Emerson, Englewood, Englishtown in Monmouth County, Ewing, Fair Lawn, Franklin Township, Freehold, Garfield, Garwood, Hackensack, Highland Park in Middlesex County, Hillsborough, Hillsdale, Hillside in Union County, Jersey City, Kearny, Kenilworth in Union County, Lakewood, Lawrence Township, Mahwah in Bergen County, Manville, Marlboro, Matawan, Metuchen, Middlesex Borough in Middlesex County, Monroe, Mountainside, New Brunswick, North Brunswick in Middlesex County, Nutley, Old Bridge, Paramus, Parsippany, Paterson, Perth Amboy in Middlesex County, Piscataway, Plainfield, Plainsboro, Point Pleasant, Princeton in Mercen County, Rahway, Raritan, Readington, Red Bank in Monmouth County, Ridgefield, Ridgefield Park, Ridgewood, Robbinsville in Mercer County, Rockaway, Rocky Hill, Roselle, Roselle Park, Rutherford in Bergen County, Sayreville, Scotch Plains, Seabright, Seaside Heights in Ocean County, Seaside Park, Secaucus, Shrewsbury, Somerville, South Amboy in Middlesex County, South Bound Brook, South Brunswick, South Orange, South Plainfield, South River, Sparta, Spotswood in Middlesex County, Summit, Teaneck, Tenafly, Toms River, Trenton, Union, Wall, Warren, Washington, Watchung, West Windsor, Westfield in Union County, Woodbridge, and other communities in Bergen County, Mercer County, Middlesex County, Monmouth County, Ocean County, Somerset County, Sussex County, Union County, and Warren County. Arrested elsewhere? Call anyway. We can suggest experienced marijuana lawyers in other New Jersey counties, and even in states other than New Jersey.

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