Sometimes the rules surrounding probation can be confusing, as can the process that surrounds probation violations. This is why it is a good idea to familiarize yourself with the specific terms and conditions of your probation, so you are less likely to violate your probation by mistake. It may also be advantageous for you to understand what may happen after a probation violation and what your rights are in that situation.
It is considered a probation violation if you do not abide by the terms or conditions of your probation. Some examples of probation violations may include:
- Committing crimes or offenses
- Getting arrested for any offense
- Not reporting to your probation officer
- Missing a scheduled court appearance
- Not paying fines or restitution
- Traveling out of state without permission
Getting caught with illegal drugs or caught drinking and driving are common probation violations. Also, may people do not recognize that being arrested for any offense, even a traffic violation is also a probation violation.
What happens after probation is violated?
Sometimes after probation is violated you may end up with a warning, but this is not always the case. Your probation officer may decide that the violation is severe enough to warrant a penalty, which may even include jail time.
If your probation officer thinks you should be penalized, you will be requested to appear in court for a probation hearing. During this hearing a judge will determine if you violated your probation.
If the judge makes this determination, there will be a sentencing to determine the punishment. Punishment could include extending your probation, adding additional probation terms, jail time or revocation of your probation.
You still have legal rights
It is important to understand that you still have legal rights if you have violated your probation. You have the right to be notified in writing of the potential violations and be heard by a neutral judge. You also have the right to be represented by an attorney and to present evidence and witnesses to help your case.
Whatever your situation, it will be a benefit to you if you fully understand the terms and conditions of your probation, as well as the legal rights that you have in a probation hearing.