|Lawyers.com > Discuss Your Legal Issue > Ask a Lawyer > Criminal Law > <p>What does probation being revoked mean, and what is a probation violation? </p>|
A sentence to probation is subject to terms and conditions. You should have received a copy of them when you were sentenced. The most standard conditions are that you not commit another offense while on probation, that you maintain contact with your probation officer, seek or maintain employment, not leave the state without permission, refrain from the excessive use of alcohol or any use of an illegal substance, and pay any required fees. Other conditions, depending on the crime for which you were sentenced, may include completion of drug or alcohol treatment, or paying restitution to any victims of your crime.
If your probation officer believes you have violated any of these terms, a petition to revoke your probation may be filed with the court.
After a hearing at which you will be allowed to present evidence and argument, the Judge will decide whether you violated probation. If the Judge finds you did violate the terms of your probation, he or she may revoke probation and sentence you to any term of incarceration provided by law for the crime of which you were convicted. However, the Judge could also decide to give you another chance, and continue your probation despite the violation.
If a petition to revoke your probation has been filed, I recommend you retain experienced counsel to represent you. You may have a legal defense to the alleged violation. Even if you don't, your attorney may be able to persuade the prosecutor or the judge that your probation should be continued, rather than revoked. In the event the Judge does revoke your probation, an attorney can still be of great assistance by presenting mitigating circumstances on your behalf at the re-sentencing, to avoid an overly harsh result.