Top Georgetown, DE Probation Violation Lawyers Near You
Probation Violation Lawyers | Fenwick Island Office | Serving Georgetown, DE
1209 Coastal Highway, Suite B, Fenwick Island, DE 19944
Probation Violation Lawyers | Georgetown Office
115 S Bedford St, Suite 2, Georgetown, DE 19947
Probation Violation Lawyers | Bethany Beach Office | Serving Georgetown, DE
209 5th St, Bethany Beach, DE 19930
Georgetown Probation Violation Information
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What Does It Mean to Violate Your Probation?
A probation violation occurs when an individual who has been placed on a probation period does not follow the terms laid out at the start of their probation. If you violate your probation or have been accused of violating your probation, then that means you may have broken the terms of your probation. The consequences of violating your probation depend on a variety of factors and whether you have violated your probation in the past. A probation violation may result in fines and jail time. An attorney can help you determine any possible consequences of your probation violation.
Some common probation violations include handling or possession firearms when the court has ordered otherwise; handling, possessing or using recreational drugs (including alcohol) when the court has ordered otherwise; missing a mandated meeting with your probation officer, missing a mandated appearance in court, refusal to pay any fines or restitution as ordered by the court, being arrested for any reason whatsoever or committing another crime.
Probation violations can be further defined under two categories, technical and substantive. A technical violation occurs if you violate one of the particular rules laid upon you as a result of your probation, while a substantive violation occurs if you are charged with a new crime or crimes.
What Happens After Your First Probation Violation?
Probation officers are afforded a great deal of discretion in handling probation violations, provided that another crime has not been committed. Missing a mandatory meeting with your probation officer after a few months of regular appointments, if a good reason can be provided for having missed said appointment, may only be worthy of a warning. Other violations, or a number of violations, could see your probation officer respond more severely — up to and including a suggestion that you be returned to the conditions of your original sentencing, which usually involves a jail or prison term.
Each legal jurisdiction, state and federal, may have certain guidelines appended to your probation period depending on the circumstances of your initial offense (the nature of the crime you were convicted of) that can influence not only the terms of your probation but also the punishment for certain violations.
Can You Violate Probation and Not Go to Jail?
It is possible to violate probation without going to jail. Whether or not you will be placed in jail after violating probation largely comes down to two factors — the judgment of your probation officer upon hearing of your latest violation and the nature of the probation violation in relation to the initial terms of your probation.
For example, you may be forced to report to jail or prison if you outright refuse to make court-ordered restitution, or if you are arrested and found guilty of another criminal act. However, if you miss a single court appearance and can offer a substantive reason as to why, a probation officer may have both the authority and the inclination to give you a second chance without further punitive action.
Is Probation Violation a Felony or Misdemeanor in Delaware?
A probation violation, in and of itself, is neither a felony nor a misdemeanor unless considering a substantive violation, such as committing a new crime.
What Are the Possible Punishments for Probation Violation?
When it comes to technical violations, over which a probation officer holds much greater discretionary power, the punishment for any probation violation varies. Probation officers, as professionals, are empowered to enact a variety of responses to a probation violation, ranging from outright forgiveness (common for slight technical violations, particularly if you are on misdemeanor probation rather than felony probation, and for first-time violations) to a reinstatement of your initial jail or prison sentence, should a probation officer suggest as much to a judge.
Substantive probation violations can be judged more harshly in court, particularly given that a criminal offense was committed by an individual already on probation — by definition, these individuals have become repeat offenders. If you commit a felony offense while on felony probation, it is extremely likely that you will be facing a sentence enhancement in court.
Can an Attorney Negotiate Terms After a Probation Violation?
If you are facing consequences related to a probation violation, whether technical or substantive, it would be wise to engage the services of a skilled criminal defense lawyer familiar with probation law.
An experienced attorney can help you negotiate with both courts and probation officers alike, representing your interests as best as possible. It may be possible for your lawyer to convince the court, or a probation officer, to give you a second chance at continuing on with your probation.
Have You Been Accused of or Have You Violated Your Probation?
Being accused of violating your probation is serious. However, if you have violated your probation, or even if you have been accused of violating your probation, a skilled probation violation attorney can help protect your rights during any proceedings brought or to be brought against you.
Best Time to Seek Legal Help
No matter what your legal issue may be, it is always best to seek legal help early in the process. An attorney can help secure what is likely to be the best possible outcome for your situation and avoid both unnecessary complications or errors.
Tips on Approaching an Initial Attorney Consultation
- Use the consultation as a means of gaining a better understanding of your legal situation.
- Ask the attorney how many cases similar to yours he/she has handled. An attorney’s experience and knowledge can speak to their expertise (or lack of) in addressing your situation.
- Your attorney should be able to articulate roughly how long a case like yours will take to resolve and what sort of procedures to expect.
- Determine how comfortable you are working with the lawyer and/or law firm.
How much does it cost to hire an attorney?
In general, how much an attorney costs will often depend on these four factors: billing method and pricing structure, type of legal work performed, law firm prestige, and attorney experience. Depending on the legal issue you are facing, an attorney may bill you by the hour, settle on a flat fee, or enter into a contingency fee agreement. The type of legal work you need help with will also play a role in cost incurred.
Common legal terms explained
Affidavit – A sworn written statement made under oath. An affidavit is meant to be a supporting document to the court assisting in the verification of certain facts. An affidavit may or may not require notarization.