Are you on probation? Have you violated probation? Are you wondering what your rights are? If found guilty of violating probation, a judge can sentence you to the maximum penalty you faced before being placed on probation, including jail or prison. It is important that you have competent legal counsel. At The Umansky Law Firm, our Orlando violation of probation attorneys represent people charged with all types of probation violation offenses and can help you with all related inquiries, such as
What Is Considered a Violation?
When you are placed on probation, there are strict guidelines that you must follow. In a situation where one of the guidelines is not being followed or a rule is broken, it is considered a violation of probation. It is up to your probation officer to determine whether or not to "violate" you.
- If a probation officer believes you violated a condition of probation he or she will fill out an affidavit. He or she will outline in that affidavit those conditions that he or she believes you violated. That affidavit will then go in front of the judge — either a felony judge, or a misdemeanor judge, depending upon what probation you're placed on. If you're placed on probation in Florida for felony, then typically it will go in front of the Department of Corrections felony judge.
- If you're placed on a county probation, which is usually for misdemeanors, then you will go in front of a county judge. Usually, it's the judge who was assigned to your initial case, unless the judge was reassigned, or some districts, circuits or counties have a specific probation judge who will hear your violation of probation case.
Florida Penalties For Violating Probation
Think about the lure or the bait that's placed on the hook as temptation. It could be that you are ordered to pay a fine or court cost, but you'd rather spend that money buying a gift for a friend, or new girlfriend. You were ordered to complete a class, but you would rather go gamble at Hard Rock Casino. Think about that as the temptation as fishermen's bait; when friends asked you to smoke pot, or go drink at a local bar, when you're forbidden by the judge to. The hook is the painful thing, obviously, at the end of the line that I want you to think of as the violation. If you violate probation, you're the fish clamping down on the hook after taking the bait. And once you clamp down on that hook, or the probation violation, the judge, or the prosecutor begins to reel you in. Penalties for can vary, but often include the following:
- Loss of Driver's License
- Community Service
- Payment of Court Cost and Fines
- Jail or Prison Time
What Happens After You Are Arrested for a Probation Violation?
In most cases, judges aren't happy that you didn't follow the terms of probation that they personally placed. Initially, they usually won't give you a bond. When you get picked up on that violation of probation, you'll be sitting in jail until either you resolve your case, or a lawyer is hired to do a bond motion.
Violation of probation proceedings are different from other criminal proceedings:
|Bond Review||No |
(You may sit in jail until your hearing.)
|Right to Jury Trial||No |
(The judge will hear your case.)
|Burden of Proof||Preponderance of evidence||Beyond a reasonable doubt|
|Forced to Testify||Yes||No|
You might not know this, but when a judge violates your probation, usually there is no bond. If you hire a probation lawyer in advance, that lawyer can prepare and then file, almost simultaneously, a bond motion to get you in front of the court, because in many cases if it's a minor violation, the judge will then set bond.
Getting Through Probation
Make sure that you keep a log of everything that you've done. Every time you've communicated to your probation officer, write it down.
- If you can email your probation officer, make sure you do so. Make sure that you never ever miss a monthly appointment.
- If you can't pay a fine, don't put your head in the sand and not pay it. Show the probation officer the efforts that you made to come up with the money.
- If you're unemployed, show the efforts that you made to try to land a job. Most importantly, document those things.
- If you have a class to complete, complete it. If you got an essay to write, write it.
- If you have counseling to do, get the counseling.
Believe it or not, while it sounds hard and tough to do, probation is a lot easier than being locked away from your family, friends and loved ones for failing to do what you were supposed to do the first time out.
Contact an Orlando Probation Violation Lawyer?
Remember, being put on probation is a serious problem. You may face the consequences of your original charge, you could be in jail for an extended period of time without the chance for bond, and you can lose the trust of your judge and probation officer. At The Umansky Law Firm, we can help you fight your violation. Please contact us online or call one of our probation lawyers at 407-228-3838.
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