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Austin Probation Lawyer

Probation is an alternative to serving jail time for a criminal offense. It allows for a sentence to be "probated," or served out in and supervised by the community. Additional conditions must be met such as undergoing counseling or taking classes, paying fines, performing community service, meeting with a probation officer, and avoiding further criminal activity. Failing to abide by the conditions of probation can result in the probation being modified, extended, or revoked along with a warrant issued for arrest. If you a facing a violation of your probation or are seeking to modify the terms, a probation lawyer in Austin can speak directly with your probation officer or judge and begin working on your behalf to defend your case.

Man behind bars
Probation is an alternative to serving time behind bars

If you are on deferred adjudication probation, it means that you will not receive a conviction for your charge on your criminal record if you successfully complete the terms of your probation. However, if you do violate your probation and it gets revoked, your case can undergo adjudication and result in you being convicted of the crime. The penalties could be more severe than they would be if you never started probation, so be sure to contact an experienced criminal defense lawyer if you are being accused of violating deferred adjudication probation.

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Violations of Probation

There are two types of probation violations: technical violations and substantive violations. Technical violations of your probation include violating any of the restrictions of probation, such as:

Substantive violations are when a person on probation commits another crime. They are typically more serious than technical violations because they undermine the premise of probation itself—that jail time is not necessarily to prevent the committing of additional crimes. A very real possibility of a substantive violation is jail, so contact us immediately if you were arrested while on probation and we'll examine all options to keep you out of jail.

Motion to Revoke Probation

Either type of probation violation is sufficient cause for a "motion to revoke" your probation. If a motion to revoke is filed by the probation department, you are still entitled to a hearing. At the hearing a judge will look at the evidence that you violated your probation and decide if it is sufficient.

It is best to have an Austin probation lawyer represent you at this hearing. A probation lawyer can defend your side and your rights using language that will be understood by the judge. Criminal defense attorneys will be aware of whether it's feasible to drop additional penalties or ask for your terms to be modified to better suit your situation. They can propose alternatives to probation revocation that you may not have thought of, and will be your best shot at avoiding a jail or prison sentence.

What Can Be Done About my Probation?

If you're facing a revocation of your probation, you may simply want to reinstate your previous probation terms in order to avoid jail. It is also possible to have a probation lawyer in Austin help to modify your probation so that you're better able to fulfill the requirements. If you wish to travel away from Austin, a probation lawyer can help secure permission to do so. Contact our offices today and we'll help figure out what your probation options are.

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Do I Really Need a Lawyer?

A lawyer can help keep you out of jail and make the best of your time on probation. If you wish to do everything possible to avoid jail time and get back to your life, then you should contact an attorney experienced with probation violations. Here at the Law Offices of Sue Berkel, we can offer you a free consulation. The sooner we can look at your case, the better your options will be.