Probation Violation Attorney – California Penal Code 1203 PC
Do You Need a Probation Violation Attorney in California?
If you are arrested for a new crime while on probation, you may face severe consequences for violating the terms of your probation under California Penal Code 1203 PC. If you are believed to be in violation of your probation, you can be subject to arrest and taken before the court for what is known as a probation revocation hearing.
At this hearing, the judge will determine if you have in fact violated the terms of your probation. If you are found to be in violation, your probation can be modified or revoked and the judge can impose the original jail sentence for the crime in which you were previously convicted.
That is why it is essential for you to hire an experienced probation violation attorney. Call us today at (877) 466-5245 for legal advice about your case or read below for more information about probation violations.
Why Hire Wallin & Klarich?
The success of our probation violation defense firm has helped us achieve the highest of merits, including a 5 out of 5 AV rating on Lawyers.com, a 10 out of 10 rating on AVVO.com, and an A+ rating from the Better Business Bureau.
For over 30 years, the probation violation lawyers at Wallin & Klarich have helped many people like you who have been arrested for violating their probation. Here are just a few testimonials provided by some of our previous clients who wanted to share their stories:
“I am grateful to the services of Wallin & Klarich. I was facing 60 days in jail for a probation violation. Thanks to Wallin & Klarich I suffered no jail time for my probation violation. I would recommend the law offices of Wallin & Klarich to anyone else in my situation.”
“My uncle was looking at state prison for a repeat felony probation violation out of the Compton Superior Court. I heard the prosecutor keep saying 16 months state prison. I knew then I needed a good lawyer so I hired Wallin & Klarich. My uncle’s lawyer was able to get him in a jail alternative program. The professional help you have given to my uncle will help him to lead a productive life. I thank Wallin & Klarich for all their efforts; you have a client for life.”
“I was charged with a domestic violence case and was also facing a probation violation. My attorney at Wallin & Klarich was able to get my case dismissed. I am very pleased with my results.”
Call Wallin & Klarich Today
You can place your trust in Wallin & Klarich. Our knowledgeable California probation violation lawyers are committed to defending your rights and your freedom. Call us today for immediate help on your case.
For more information on laws regarding probation violations, read below or simply pick up the phone and speak to one of our skilled probation violation defense attorneys today.
Call us today at (877) 4-NO-JAIL or (877) 466-5245 for a free telephone consultation.
What is a Probation Violation?
When people facing criminal charges in California go to court, their primary concern is “will I go to jail?” In many cases, being sentenced to probation is a way to serve out the punishment for the crime without going to jail.
However, what persons accused of felony and misdemeanor crimes in California often do not realize is that being placed on probation can be a very severe punishment. How severe the penalties you will face depend upon the circumstances of your case and whether you are placed on misdemeanor probation or felony probation.
So, what is the difference between misdemeanor and felony probation?
Misdemeanor Probation in California
When a person is placed on probation for a misdemeanor conviction, it means that the judge is essentially giving that person a break by not sending them to jail at all (or sentencing them to a much shorter period in jail than he or she could have faced). If you are placed on probation, the judge will list specific terms and conditions that you must follow during the probation period.
If you are placed on misdemeanor probation, it is very important for you to obtain a copy of the specific terms of your probation because failing to meet any of those conditions could result in serious punishment.
If you violate any of the terms of your probation, a warrant could be issued for your arrest. Once you are taken into custody, you could face the maximum amount of jail time you could have received for the criminal charge that you plead guilty and received probation for.
Common Misdemeanor Probation Terms
If you are placed on misdemeanor probation, the judge will issue a set of specific terms and conditions that you must follow. For misdemeanor probation, these terms are likely to include that you:
- Violate no law (with the exception of traffic infractions)
- Pay all fines by a set date
- Complete a self-help program (this could include DUI school, anger management classes, or drug counseling)
- Appear at all future court hearings
- Stay away from specified persons during the probation period
If you do not comply with all the terms of your misdemeanor probation, you will likely face a probation violation hearing.
How Will I Find Out if I Have a Misdemeanor Probation Violation?
If you are accused of violating misdemeanor probation by failing to comply with any of the terms of your probation, one of these following things will likely happen:
- The court will order a warrant for your arrest. If this occurs, you are subject to being arrested at any time. The court will set a bail amount when it issues the warrant for your arrest. This means that when you are arrested, you most likely will have to post that bail amount. If you cannot post bail, you will remain in custody until the probation violation hearing; OR
- The court may send you a letter advising you to appear in court for your probation violation arraignment. At that hearing, the court will set a bail amount (or release you without bail) and set a probation violation hearing
If you are ordered to appear at a probation violation hearing, you should speak to one of the experienced probation violation attorneys at Wallin & Klarich who can help you prepare for the hearing and work toward obtaining a favorable result in your case.
What Happens at a Misdemeanor Probation Violation Hearing?
The purpose of a misdemeanor probation violation hearing is to determine whether you violated one or more of the terms of your probation. The court hears testimony during the hearing, and will decide if you are guilty of violating any of the terms of your probation.
In order for the court to find you guilty of violating probation, it must find by a “preponderance of the evidence” that you did in fact violate at least one of the terms of your probation. This means that the judge only has to find you were in violation of your probation by 51% of the evidence.
Punishment for Violating Misdemeanor Probation
If the court finds that you violated probation, you could face severe punishment. For a misdemeanor probation violation, the court can revoke your probation and order you to serve the maximum amount of jail time you could have received when you were first convicted of the crime.
The judge could also choose to revoke and reinstate your probation. If the judge chooses this option, he or she can:
- Order you to do some time in jail and place you back on probation for the same period of time
- Order you to do community work service, home confinement, work release or any other form of alternate sentencing; or
- Order you to serve no additional jail time but extend your period of probation
If the court finds that you did not violate your probation, the probation violation will be dismissed and you will receive no additional punishment. However, you will still remain on probation until your original probation term expires.
Felony Probation and Felony Probation Violations
When a person is placed on felony probation, this means that the court is giving the accused a chance to avoid going to prison or county jail for a lengthy period of time. This may seem like an ideal solution for you if you are accused of a serious felony offense. However, before you decide to accept probation, you need to understand that being on felony probation is much more serious than being on misdemeanor probation.
First, in almost all cases when a person is placed on felony probation, he or she is assigned a probation officer. This means he or she is being placed on “formal probation.”
What does it mean to have a probation officer and be on formal probation? It means you will be ordered by the court to report to your probation officer on a regular basis (this can range from weekly to monthly). If you fail to meet with your probation officer as required, it could be considered a felony probation violation.
Second, the terms of felony probation are far more difficult to comply with than misdemeanor probation terms. Felony probation terms commonly include some or all of the following:
- You are placed on probation for 3-5 years depending upon the nature of the case
- You must submit to all searches and seizures by any law enforcement officer regardless if they have a warrant. Basically, you give up your constitutional right to be free from random searches.
- You must not violate any laws, other than traffic infractions
- You must meet with your probation officer as required by the probation officer
- You cannot leave the county in which you reside without the permission of your probation officer
- You may not associate with anyone who is a known drug user (if this is a drug case)
- You may not associate with any known gang member (if there are gang allegations against you)
- You cannot associate or be in the company of any minor unless in the company of a responsible adult approved by your probation officer (if your case involved a sex crime)
- You must register as a sex offender per Penal Code Section 290 (if the conviction requires sex registration)
- You must pay restitution in an amount ordered by the court by a set date
- You must pay a fine and all court costs by a set date
- You must pay the cost of probation supervision by a set date
- You must complete any required drug, alcohol, sexual addition, anger management or other self-help program ordered by the court
- You must return to court for all future court hearings
As you can see from the lengthy list above, felony probation is not something that is easy to successfully complete. So, what happens if you violate probation?
If a probation officer believes that you have violated probation, he or she can decide to “violate you.” There are many bad things that could happen to you if this occurs, including:
- The probation officer will likely arrest you or have local law enforcement arrest you
- You will be put in custody on what is called a “no bail hold,” which means you will not be able to bail out on any amount of bail pending the initial court date
- You will likely remain in custody for several weeks until there can be a felony probation violation hearing
After you are arrested, a date for a probation violation arraignment will be set.
What Happens at the Felony Probation Violation Arraignment?
Within a few court days of your arrest, a probation violation arraignment will take place. At that court hearing, you will be:
- Advised of your constitutional rights
- Informed of the exact nature of your alleged probation violation
- Given an opportunity to admit or deny the alleged probation violation
You will also be advised that you have the right to have a lawyer defend you at your probation violation hearing. At the arraignment, you also have the right to ask the judge to set bail pending the probation violation hearing.
Felony Probation Violation Hearing
At the felony probation violation hearing, the court will decide if you are guilty of violating any of the terms of your felony probation. The prosecution will attempt to convince the court that you violated at least one of the conditions of your probation by presenting evidence that proves you violated probation. The prosecutor must prove his case by 51% of the evidence, or what is referred to as a preponderance of the evidence.
Your probation violation lawyer will present evidence that he or she feels may result in you winning the probation violation hearing or present mitigating evidence in an attempt to limit your punishment if you are found in violation of your felony probation.
Then, the judge will decide whether you are in violation of your felony probation. If it is found that you violated felony probation, you face severe consequences.
Punishment for Violating Felony Probation
If you are found to be in violation of felony probation, there are many options a judge has in determining your punishment. Unfortunately, all of these options are bad for you.
Your punishment could be any of the following:
- The judge can revoke your probation, find you in violation and send you to state prison for the maximum time you could have been sentenced to when you plead guilty to the original felony charge. For example, if you plead guilty to a crime that carries up to six years in prison, you could be sentenced to serve up to six years in prison (minus credit for time served).
- The judge can revoke and reinstate your probation with new terms. Some of those new terms can be:
- You serve a number of days or months in county jail
- Extending the length of your probation
- Adding new terms to your probation
- Ordering you to serve time in a drug rehabilitation center or a sober living home, or any other reasonable punitive measure
In all likelihood, you will be sentenced to serve time in custody if you are convicted of violating your probation. That is why you should hire an experienced criminal defense lawyer to represent you if you have been accused of violating probation.
What Should I Do If I’m Accused of Violating Probation?
When you are put on probation for a misdemeanor or felony crime, it does not mean your case is over. In a high percentage of cases, people who are put on felony or misdemeanor probation find themselves back in court facing jail time and other additional punishments due to an alleged probation violation.
In felony probation violation matters, you will likely be held in custody for many weeks or months waiting for your probation violation hearing. This is the case even if you in fact later prove that you did not violate your probation
The most important advice that we can give you is that you should never enter a plea to a misdemeanor or felony crime until you completely understand all of the terms of your probation. However, if you find yourself accused of violating probation, you should speak to an experienced criminal defense attorney immediately.
Your lawyer can represent you throughout the entire probation violation process and help you navigate the complex legal system. With an experienced lawyer representing you, you may be able to obtain a favorable outcome in your case.
Probation Violation Hearing FAQs
To help you understand the various aspects of a probation violation, our attorneys at Wallin & Klarich have provided answers to some of the most commonly asked questions in our FAQ section. There, you can find answers to questions like:
- What is the difference between probation and parole?
- How long does probation usually last?
- Will the terms of my probation change if I am found in violation?
Call the Probation Violation Attorneys at Wallin & Klarich Today
Being placed on probation means you will likely be able to stay out of jail, but that doesn’t mean that probation is easy. Many people find it difficult to comply with all of the terms of their probation, and violating probation could lead to serious consequences. If you have been accused of violating probation, you should seek the help of an experienced criminal defense attorney right away.
At Wallin & Klarich, our skilled and knowledgeable attorneys have more than 35 years of experience successfully defending our clients accused of violating misdemeanor and felony probation. We’ve helped thousands of clients in their time of legal need, and we can help you now.
With offices in Orange County, Riverside, San Bernardino, Victorville, Los Angeles, West Covina, Torrance and San Diego, you can find an experienced Wallin & Klarich attorney to help you no matter where you are located.
Call our law firm at (877) 4-NO-JAIL or (877) 466-5245 for a free phone consultation. We will be there when you call.