How to Prepare for a Probation Violation Hearing?
Probation is a type of sentencing that allows individuals to remain in their community but under the supervision of a probation officer. However, violating probation terms can result in serious consequences, including being sent to jail.
To avoid such penalties, it is critical that you take a probation violation hearing seriously and prepare for it thoroughly. Our Dunwoody probation revocation lawyers at Hawkins Spizman Trial Lawyers can help you prepare for your probation violation hearing and ensure the most favorable outcome possible.
What Is a Probation Violation Hearing?
A probation violation hearing is a hearing to determine whether or not an individual has violated the terms of their probation. This can include failing drug tests, not attending counseling sessions, not paying fines, or committing a new offense. The hearing is presided over by a judge and often attended by the individual’s probation officer, the prosecutor, and the defense counsel.
What to Expect During the Probation Violation Hearing?
During the hearing, the prosecutor must demonstrate to the judge that the individual has violated their probation in some way. The defense has an opportunity to present evidence and argue against the prosecutor’s case. The judge will ultimately decide whether the individual has violated their probation and determine the consequences.
5 Ways You Can Prepare for a Probation Violation Hearing
There are at least five things you can do to prepare for a probation violation hearing:
- Hire a lawyer. A skilled lawyer can help you navigate the proceedings, understand what to expect, and increase your chances of a favorable outcome.
- Review the terms of your probation. Review your terms of probation thoroughly and be aware of any potential violations. Gather any evidence that supports your compliance with the terms of your probation.
- Dress appropriately. Dress in a respectful and appropriate manner, as you would for a job interview. This can demonstrate to the judge that you take the hearing seriously and understand the importance of being respectful in a courtroom.
- Arrive early. Arrive at least 30 minutes early to your hearing to avoid any last-minute stressors and to familiarize yourself with the surroundings.
- Write a statement. Write a statement in advance that explains why you believe you did not violate your probation, any mitigating circumstances, and why probation is still appropriate for you. Your lawyer will help you with the statement.
Contact an experienced lawyer to get assistance in preparing for a probation violation hearing.
Potential Outcomes of a Probation Violation Hearing
According to O.C.G.A. § 42-8-38(c), there are three potential outcomes of a probation violation hearing:
1. Probation Revoked
The most severe penalty for violating probation is having your probation revoked. This means that the individual must serve their original sentence, whether it was for a misdemeanor or a felony.
2. Probation Modified
If the judge determines that a violation has occurred, but it is not severe enough to revoke probation, the judge may increase the severity of the terms of probation in the form of community service, counseling, or other proactive measures.
3. Probation Reinstated
If the judge finds that no violation occurred, or if the violation was minor, they may choose to reinstate probation. In this case, the original terms of probation will be enforced.
Prepare for Your Probation Violation Hearing with a Lawyer
Preparing for a probation violation hearing can be a stressful and overwhelming process. However, by hiring a skilled lawyer, you can increase your chances of a successful outcome. Get in touch with our lawyers at Hawkins Spizman Trial Lawyers if a probation violation hearing was scheduled after you allegedly violated the terms of your probation. We represent individuals throughout the state of Georgia, including Dunwoody, Atlanta, Sandy Springs, Alpharetta, Johns Creek, Cobb County, Fulton County, and Gwinnett County. Call 770-685-6400 for a free case evaluation.