When a defendant allegedly fails to comply with a requirement or condition of his/her supervision, their probation may be violated. A violation of probation can have significant consequences because failure to comply with probation can often be viewed by the court as an unwillingness and/or refusal to rehabilitate requiring an escalation in punishment (e.g incarceration in the county jail or state prison). If you have been excused of violating probation, it imperative that you take this situation seriously. You need to present your very best case to challenge the violation and/or revocation of your non-custodial penalties. Hiring an attorney experienced in probation hearings is an absolute must in our estimation and we encourage you to contact our Newark Office at 973-710-1520 for assistance. A lawyer that is knowledgeable in probation violation hearings is prepared to assist you immediately in a free consultation.

Common Ways Probation Is Violated: Failure to Appear at Scheduled Meetings With Your Probation Officer (a.k.a. Report as Directed), Submission of a Dirty Drug/Urine Test (i.e Failed Drug Test), Failure to Complete Drug, Alcohol, Anger Management or Psychological/Psychiatric Rehabilitation or Treatment, Commission of Another Criminal Offense or Violation of Law or Failure to Pay Fines or Restitution.

Probation Violation Hearings

Every defendant is entitled to a formal hearing to contest the allegations of a violation. A defendant also has the right to be represented by an attorney, cross-examine any witnesses, and to present their own evidence. It is important to keep in mind, however, the these hearings are conducted in summary fashion with relaxation of the normal rules of evidence, as well as certain constitutional requirements. The standard of proof is not beyond reasonable doubt but rather a preponderance of the evidence; it is more likely than not that the defendant inexcusably failed to comply with a substantial requirement of probation (i.e. condition).

What Must Establish  The prosecutor and/or probation officer must establish two things by a preponderance of the evidence. First, they must prove that there was a violation of one or more of the conditions of probation. Second, the court must find, in its discretion, that the violation is inexcusable such that the probationer should be violated.

How Is A Violation Instituted. There are generally three (3) ways to commence a violation of probation. The matter may be commenced by issuance of a warrant, issuance of a notice of violation, or through issuance of a summons to appear. For any of these three (3) methods to be effective, the violation must be issued during the period of probation and not after it has already expired.

Sentence If Convicted Of Violating Probation

The are various options in the event of issuance of a violation. First, the court can choose to address the actions of the defendant on the record but take no additional action. Second, the judge can extend or, alternatively, revoke probation.  In determining whether or not to revoke probation and incarceration the defendant, there are number of factors to be considered by the court including, but not limited to whether the violation is indicative of: (1) inability to live a lawful life; (2) adhere to a program of probation; or (3) is likely to commit another offense. If the court finds that incarceration is the appropriate sentence and punishment, the defendant must be afforded credit for any period of imprisonment previously served on the underlying criminal charge. The court may also, in its discretion, provide credit against the jail/prison sentence for time spent in a residential drug program or rehabilitation facility.

Immediate Arrest Upon Issuance of Violation By Probation Officer

A court is authorized to issue a warrant if a violation is issued. A probation officer may also make an arrest provided he/she has probable cause to believe that the defendant has violated a condition(s) of probation including, but limited to, committing a new criminal offense. N.J.S.A. 2C:45-3(a)(3) provides that a defendant may be held in custody, without bail, pending the outcome of violation hearing or released pending the outcome of the related revocation hearing.

Newark NJ Probation Hearing Defense Attorneys

There is always the real chance of jail/prison being imposed when someone is convicted of violating probation. This is the primary reason why you do not want to have your probation revoked. Our team of defense lawyers possesses a record of success that spans decades and we are ready to do everything we can to insure that you also enjoy the best outcome in your probation hearing. Call us anytime 24/7 at 973-710-1520 to reach a skilled attorney who can assist you in navigating any hurdles presented by your probation officer. We are ready to assist you immediately and consultations are without charge so there is no reason to hesitate to contact us if a violation of probation has been issued by your probation officer.