Q: How long will I be on probation?
Probation periods may be as short as 90 days or as long as a year or more. The judge and your progress determine the length of probation.
Q: What does being on probation mean?
It means that you have either "pled guilty" or been "found guilty" of committing a crime. As a result, the Judge has placed you on "official probation", and is allowing you to remain at home with your parents under the supervision of the court and a Probation Officer.
Q: What is expected of me while I am on probation?
First, you must fully understand the rules of Probation. If you do not understand them, be sure and ask your Probation Officer to review them with you and ask any questions that you may have.
Second, you must follow all of the rules of Probation. The goal of your probation can be reached by maintaining a good attitude and cooperating with the Court and your parents.
Third, a lack of cooperation, failure or refusal to abide by the rules, may lead to further Court appearances, and other sanctions.
Q: What happens if I violate my probation?
A common violation of Probation is failure to follow the Probation rules. Your Probation Officer will warn you if you are not following the rules. If you fail to follow the rules in spite of the warning, your Probation Officer may charge you with "Violation of Probation" and you will have to appear before the Judge.
Violating the law is another form of probation violation. If you violate the law and are formally charged, you may be placed in the Juvenile Center pending further Court proceedings. You could be required to attend a program designed to assist you in making better choices and avoiding further trouble. You could also be removed from your home to some type of treatment facility depending on the seriousness of the charge or violation.
Q: Will I have a juvenile record as a result of being on probation?
Yes. The law requires your file to remain in the Family Division of the Court until you have reached 30 years of age. At the time, the record can be expunged. However, certain life or criminal traffic offenses can never be set aside.