If you are convicted of a crime in Georgia, you may be sentenced to probation. During this time, you must follow certain rules and requirements. If you violate the terms of your probation, you will face serious consequences and penalties and a warrant will be issued for your arrest. Violating probation is a serious offense; however, sometimes individuals violate the terms of their probation without even meaning to. A missed probation meeting or leaving the state on a trip could be enough to trigger a bench warrant for your arrest. Yet, even innocent mistakes can have disastrous consequences and adversely affect your entire future.
Ways to Violate Your Probation in Georgia
In the state of Georgia, there are three ways to violate your probation:
- Technical violations – a technical violation occurs when you fail to meet a technical part of your probation. This could include failing to pay a fine on time or failing to report to your probation officer on your appointed day.
- Special condition violations – a special condition violation occurs when you fail to fulfill a special condition of your probation. This can include failing to maintain employment, failing to attend mandatory drug or alcohol counseling, or breaking your restraining order.
- Substantive violations – a substantive violation occurs when you are arrested for committing another crime while on probation. This could be driving under the influence of alcohol or public intoxication.
Consequences of Violating Your Probation
If you are found in violation of your probation, you will be required by law to attend a court hearing. The judge will determine your punishment based off of the nature of your violation. In general, a technical violation will be treated less harshly than a substantive violation. Even committing a simple misdemeanor while you are own probation could result in up to 2 years of your probation being revoked. This may result in your time being served in prison.
Some of consequences you could face after a probation violation include:
- Revocation of probation
- Extension of probation
- Jail or prison sentence
- Heavy fines
- Community service
- Additional special conditions
- Required counseling
In order to protect yourself through this process, it is important to have an experienced Atlanta criminal defense lawyer on your side. Your attorney will refute the evidence against you and negotiate on your behalf. Unlike other types of offenses, the standard of proof is very low with probation violations. This means that a preponderance of evidence is all that is needed. Unlike the standard proof used for criminal cases, which is “beyond a reasonable doubt”, the judge only needs evidence that seems true before revoking your probation. As you can see, the stakes are high. Without an attorney, you could face serious consequences, including jail time.
Have You Been Caught in Violation of Your Probation?
If you’ve been caught in violating of your probation, it is important to understand the severity of these charges. Your entire future could be in jeopardy even if you made an innocent mistake. At Schnipper Law, P.C., our Atlanta criminal defense attorneys can help you build a solid case against any probation violation charge. We work quickly to protect our clients’ rights and their futures. Call Schnipper Law P.C., at (404) 545-5845 for a free initial consultation and review of your case. We are ready to be the strong legal advocates you need in your corner.
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