Probation Violations

What should I do when I receive a probation violation?

Once an accused has been found guilty of a crime, probation is often imposed by the court. Probation consists of two components: a suspended sentence and a period of probation. A suspended sentence is the period of imprisonment that can be imposed by a judge if your probation is revoked by the court. A period of probation is a period of time from 6 months to 36 months in length, in 6-month increments, during which that person is subject to the conditions of probation. For example, someone with a 10 to 21 month sentence suspended for 18 months of probation would have to complete a year and a half of successful probation to avoid a minimum of 10 months in prison. A person who is on court ordered probation is referred to as a probationer.

Probation comes in two forms: supervised probation and unsupervised probation. On supervised probation, the probationer reports to a probation officer.

The officer will do the following:

  • meet with the probationer monthly
  • subject the probationer to random drug tests
  • subject the probationer to warrantless searches and seizures
  • collect monetary costs like court costs, probation fees, fines, and restitution
  • oversee completion of community service hours
  • schedule assessments and treatment for substance abuse or mental health
  • impose conditions of employment or education on the probationer

On unsupervised probation, the probationer needs to complete similar tasks directed by the court but they may do so without reporting to a probation officer.

Not completing conditions of probation can result in the Department of Adult Corrections issuing a probation violation against the probationer. The probationer will be served with a violation document that details the specific allegations regarding how the obligations imposed by the court have not been met. Failure to complete programs or community service, failed drug screens, or failure to pay costs or restitution are common violations on probation. These violations can result in imposition of up to 90 days in jail under some circumstances, commonly referred to as a CRV. For more serious violations, such as commission of a new crime greater than a Class 3 misdemeanor while on probation or for absconding while on probation, the probationer can be revoked from probation by the court. Revocation means that the original suspended sentence imposed by the court will be activated and the probationer will be sent to prison to serve that sentence with credit for any pretrial confinement.

Do I need an attorney for my probation violation?

If you have been violated on your probation, your probation officer will be making recommendations to the judge that will have major consequences. They could recommend that you serve time in jail or prison which could result in you losing your job. Judges tend to listen to what the officers recommend and they issue their rulings accordingly. It does not help that often your probation officer will be unhappy with you for not fulfilling the obligations of your sentence! Speaking to them directly will usually get you nowhere fast. That is why you need a trustworthy attorney to step in and act as an intermediary between you and your officer. Our trained lawyers have helped many people continue on probation when officers demand to put someone in jail. We can help you figure out how to put yourself in the best position to fight the violation or to avoid serious consequences from it.

Can I get my probation ended early?

There are rare circumstances under which a judge can agree to end your probation early. If you have cooperated with your probation officer, paid all costs, completed all community service hours, complied with all treatment, and finished all classes that you were ordered to do, then you might be eligible to have your probation terminated successfully. We can help you speak with your probation officer and determine whether that option is available to you as long as you have put in the hard work to earn the officer’s trust. If they agree to the early termination, our lawyers can help convince the judge that you deserve to move on from probation.

Have you been violated on probation? Contact us  (704) 931-5535 and one of our experienced attorneys will help you today!



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