July 26, 2018
When a person is convicted of a crime a common outcome is they are put on probation. Probation is a period of time in which a person is under court supervision. The person will have many requirements such as educational classes, community service, and drug testing. Probation is the alternative to jail.
When a person fails to complete probation requirements, the judge will haul them back into court. The stakes are high in these situations. The person could face jail or prison time for a probation violation. This article provides some guidance for dealing with probation and probation violations.
When You Are First Put on Probation
I always tell people to try and complete as many probation requirements as soon as they are put on probation. Don’t procrastinate. If the judge orders you to do forty hours of community service, try to knock out the hours as soon as possible.
People are busy, with work, family, and other commitments. Waiting until the last minute to complete probation requirements could result in simply not having enough time to complete the requirements. This is why it’s important to do what they judge says right away – you don’t have to worry about running out of time down the road.
This will also help when you’re faced with an actual probation violation
Dealing with Probation Violations
Let’s say your faced with a probation violation for testing positive for drug use. Hopefully, you’re able to tell the judge about all the other good things you have done on probation. This is why completing as many probation requirements right away is a good idea. So that if you are faced with a violation, at least you’ve completed many requirements already.
Think about it this way. Would you rather go in front of the judge on a probation violation for a positive drug test having completed community service and payment of all fines? Or would you rather go in front of the judge with a positive drug test and haven’t done any other probation requirements?
Getting as many probation requirements out of the way fast is like insurance in case you get in trouble later. Most judges will take into account what you have accomplished on probation and compare that to your probation violation.
Fix the Problem Before Going to Court
Take care of any outstanding requirements before going to court on your probation violation. For example, let’s say a person is being brought to court on a probation violation for failure to perform community service. What do you think the person should do in the meantime before court? As much community service as possible! That way the person can go in front of the judge able to say they did everything they could to correct the problem. This will help the judge be lenient on you.
You do not want to be stuck in a situation where you’re up for a probation violation having met none or few requirements and have taken no corrective action. Be proactive. Take care of probation requirements as soon as possible. If you miss something or mess up, take action to correct the issue before going to court.
Sam Bernstein of ArborYpsi Law is a in Washtenaw County, Michigan. You can reach Sam at (734) 883-9584 or by e-mail at [email protected] ArborYpsi Law is located at 4158 Washtenaw Ave., Ann Arbor, MI 48108.
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