What Constitutes Violation of Probation?

Posted on the February 23rd, 2013 under Legal Guides by admin

When someone receives criminal probation, they are ordered to follow a certain set of conditions. These conditions are determined by the court and in order to remain free and out of jail, these conditions must be met. For some, probation may be the only sentence while for others, it may include other penalties such as a short time in jail, court costs and other fines and counseling.

There are a number of ways that supervision can take place. Some are put on what is called “house arrest” and are not permitted to leave their homes. Others may receive a tracking device that tells their probation officer where they are at all times. Traditional probation is where the probationer reports regularly to a probation officer and informal probation simply requires periodic drug tests and searches but no further supervision.

Violating probation can bring about legal consequences. In some cases, additional fines may be applied and in others, prison sentences may be invoked. It is important for a probationer to follow the terms of their probation in order to avoid this additional legal problem. Those who are arrested or otherwise charged with violation of probation often seek a criminal attorney for assistance.

There are different types of penalties for violation of probation and the penalties are often dependent upon the reason for probation as well as other aspects. Those who repeatedly violate their probation may simply be sent to prison. Failing to attend a probation meeting, being late for that meeting, not paying fines, not finishing rehabilitation or counseling and many other acts can violate probation. Not passing a drug test for instance would violate the condition that the probationer refrains from taking illegal drugs. When these conditions are not met, the probationer can get handed a much heftier sentence than their original penalty.

When someone does violate the conditions of their probation, it may be necessary to contact a criminal attorney. If the violation was due to something that was well beyond the probationer’s control, an experienced attorney could help to lessen the sentence or have the violation charge eliminated completed from the probationer’s record. Without an attorney, the probationer is basically on their own. Courts tend not to favor probation violators and depending on the state, this could be cause for quite a long prison sentence, particularly if this is not the first time that probation has been violated.

Those who are on probation are offered this sentence in order to help them to overcome their legal issues and begin again. Taking advantage of probation is simply never a good idea. It is important that probationers follow their conditions carefully and when that does not happen, contact an experienced attorney. Someone with experience in criminal law and particularly in probation violations can help to potentially lessen the sentence that may be received for not following the probation restrictions. Being charged with probation violation does not entitle you to the right to a trial by jury so an experienced attorney may be critical in retaining your freedom.

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