A plea bargain is a deal that takes place before the preliminary hearing in which the defendant negotiates with the prosecutor to plead guilty to a lesser charge. In some states, plea bargaining for DUI cases is not allowed because drunk driving is considered to be such a serious crime. In states where plea bargains are allowed for DUI cases, it is usually only an option for those with a clean record.
Also, a defense attorney may be able to negotiate with the prosecutor to have the DUI charge or recommended sentence reduced. This can take place at or before the preliminary hearing. An example of this is to have a DUI charge reduced to a reckless driving charge.