Probation Violation Lawyers in New Port Richey, Florida
Attorneys That Put Experience Above All Else
Probation is often a consequence of a criminal activity that allows the offender to stay out of jail and learn from their experiences. Probation could also be a part of someone’s release terms. No matter what the case is for having probation, an offender must abide by all rules. If not, the offender could wind back up in jail or have steeper consequences.
While our hopes are that you never face a probation violation, we know that it happens to the best of us. This should not stop you from holding the goal of having the original probation terms reinstated. Even if the probation was modified a bit, it could still work for you. However, typically the only way you will see this happen is if you hire a New Port Richey probation violation attorney from Musca Law Firm, who is properly equipped to effectively defend you and your rights.
With over 150 years of combined legal experience among our team of highly qualified attorneys, Musca Law has successfully tried numerous probation violation cases throughout the history of our firm. Don’t hesitate to contact us today at (727) 480-9675 to schedule a free initial case consultation with one of the experienced attorneys in our New Port Richey office.
Probation can be defined as the release of an offender from jail. This offender will be subjected to a period where he or she is supervised. This individual will have freedom for their good behavior but will still need to report to their probation officer. Probation is typically reserved for first-time offenders or for those that have committed a misdemeanor.
Many, including the courts, view probation as a privilege that is provided by the state instead of sentencing the person to jail. The goal of probation is to rehabilitate the person while protecting society as a whole.
The Probation System In New Port Richey
Probation is not the same for every person. The nature of the crime will affect what the probation terms are. While many of us may see probation as an easy way out, those that are serving probation time may feel differently.
There are many different potential components of terms of probation in New Port Richey and the rest of Florida. Such components could include the following:
- Obeying a curfew
- Staying sober from both alcohol and drugs
- Completing a drug or alcohol program
- Professional requirements
- Other terms set forth
- Meeting with a probation officer on a set schedule
- Having random drug tests completed
- Performing community service
- Wearing a monitoring system/device
- Staying in a geographical region
- Attending counseling for anger management
- Avoiding contact with other known criminals, such as gang members
Many times there are many requirements that a person must follow in order to remain on probation or not break their probation terms. In some instances, a person may be breaking their probation without even knowing that they have done so!
If a person is on medications that a doctor has prescribed, they will need to let their probation officer know immediately so they do not get into trouble for having drugs.
You should also report any contact you have with law enforcement officers to your probation officer. Some individuals are scared that if they have any contact for any reason with a police officer, it will look bad to their probation officer. However, when you meet with your probation officer once a month, and fill out the questionnaire provided, one of the questions will ask if you have had contact with any law enforcement. Just be honest about any contact you have had. It is best that your probation officer finds out about it from you than from someone else. In fact, lying and saying you did not have contact with an officer can be just as bad as having a violation of your probation. An example of this is that you were at a friend’s home and he and his girlfriend got into a fight, which resulted in the cops being called. Even though you had nothing to do with this, it will be in your best interest to let your probation officer know about this incident.
Standard Conditions of Probation in New Port Richey
There are standard conditions of probation that most probation sentences in New Port Richey and the rest of Florida are given. These include the following:
Probation Expenses in New Port Richey
Probation is very expensive, no matter what city or state you are located in. For every month you are on probation, you will be required to pay $55 to cover the cost of your probation officer. If the person needs to be electronically monitored, the fee will be about $105 per week.
You will also be expected to pay any court costs, fines, and restitution. Other costs include random drug testing, as well as any counseling, treatment, or classes that are recommended to you. One can expect to pay at least $25 for each urine test and $15 for every breath test.
Sometimes, people on probation do struggle to pay for it, especially if they have lost their job due to the crime they committed in order to be put on probation. If you are not able to pay your obligation, you should tell your probation officer. They may be willing to work with you to see if the courts can have the cost either lowered or waived.
A lien can also be set up by the judge if the probationer is having a hard time paying for their probation. However, a payment plan must be set up after sentencing in a specified time. Otherwise, the probationer will have their driver’s license suspended. The only way to qualify for a lien is to have a job, be attending school, and/or to be looking for work.
Examples of Violations of Probation
The following are all examples of violations of probation:
New Port Richey’s Technical Violations of Probation Vs. Substantive Violations of Probation
A technical violation of probation occurs when an individual, also known as a probationer, fails to complete one or more aspects of their probation agreement or terms. This could be a number of things, as not all probation terms are the same. Some individuals are not allowed to purchase firearms, while others are required to get a job. Other violations that could occur are not being home by curfew, not staying in the geographical area that was assigned to you, and/or skipping a domestic batterers program. If you have changed your address without notifying your probation officer, this is also considered a technical violation.
If you have a technical violation of probation, the court can do any of the following:
- A monthly report that is truthful will be given to your probation officer on the form that is provided by the date that is given to you by the court or probation officer.
- You will be required to pay the state of Florida $50 per month, as well as any other statutory charges towards the cost of your probation supervision.
- A $1 fee per month will be paid by the probationer, up to $60. This will need to be paid within 90 days after the sentence has started.
- You will not be allowed to change your residence or your employment. If you must do so, you need the permission of your probation officer.
- You may not carry, possess, or own any firearm.
- You will not violate any laws.
- You will not associate with anyone that engages in criminal activities.
- You will be employed by a lawful occupation. Your employer will be aware of your probation, and you will need to provide support for any dependents.
- You will not possess any drugs unless under a prescription by a medical doctor. You will also not visit any places where drugs are sold unlawfully.
- You will be truthful to your probation officer at all times. You will allow them into your home when they visit, or at your place of employment. Any instructions your probation officer gives you will need to be followed.
- You will submit urine, blood, or breath tests as required by your probation officer or any other professional staffing at any treatment center you are utilizing.
- You will be required to take a digital photo that will be placed on the department’s website while you are on probation.
- Skipping an appointment with your probation officer
- Failing to pay any fines or restitution that the courts had ordered you to do
- Failing a urine test
- Associating with other people who have done criminal acts
- Failing to appear in court when scheduled to
- Possessing drugs
- Selling drugs
If your probation is revoked, you can be given the original sentence to which you were first given. An example of this is if you were originally sentenced to two years in jail, but given probation, a judge can give you two years of prison time if you are found to be in a technical violation of your probation.
A substantive violation also referred to as a new law violation of probation, will occur when the probationer commits a new crime or offense. This might include being charged with a DUI (Driving Under the Influence) while being on probation for drunk driving or having a charge of possession of marijuana when you are on probation.
What Probation Officers Look For and Do
A probation officer is required to look after anyone that has been put on probation. They are required to interview those that are put on probation see what their risk of repeating the criminal activity is.
They may do home visits for probationers on a regular basis. While at the home, they will make sure the probationer does, in fact, live at the address provided. They will also check the home to make sure that no firearms are present or any other items that may violate the probationer’s probation terms, such as alcohol or drugs. Probation officers have every right to see who also lives at the residence with their client, as people do have negative or positive impacts on those that they live with.
Probation officers will also guide probationers and assist them in fulfilling the instructions that the judge has given them. This could be helping the individual get a job or complete a drug course. If a client needs to discuss specific aspects of their case, such as anger management or addiction, the probation officer is expected to be there for them. The probation officer will be required to document everything in order to show the courts the progress of their client.
How To Avoid A Violation of Probation in New Port Richey
To avoid a violation of probation, you will be required to follow your probation terms. Always meet with your probation officer when your meetings are scheduled. Stay away from any drugs and alcohol so your urine, blood, or breath tests come back clear. Keep a job and provide for your dependents.
Steer clear of people that are not good for you. If there are people in your life that try to get you to do illegal things, such as selling or consuming drugs, it is best to avoid them altogether, at least during the period of your probation. Work to be around people that will have a positive impact on your life. The more positivity you have in your life, the better.
Also, be honest. Let your employer know that you are on probation and that your probation officer may visit you from time to time. And be truthful with your probation officer. Never hide anything from them. Being dishonest with them could make the rest of your probation term unbearable for you. Probation officers are there to help you get your life back, but if you are not honest with them, they will have a very hard time doing that for you.
Quality Representation From a Probation Violation Attorney in New Port Richey, Florida
Violations of probation are often not small matters. In fact, the courts will often treat them as a big deal. And you should as well. If you are looking to protect your rights, along with your freedom, consider contacting Musca Law Firm today. Our New Port Richey attorneys have the skills to develop a plan of action against your violation of probation charges. As we have well over 150 years of cumulative legal experience in our firm, we have the dedication and determination to succeed in your case! Don’t hesitate to contact our New Port Richey office today at (727) 480-9675 to schedule a free initial case consultation with one of our experienced attorneys.
- Modify the probation
- Reinstate your probation
- Revoke your probation and incarcerate you