Probation is a light sentence compared to jail, but ought to be taken seriously. But as they say, the best laid plans of mice and men often go awry, and sometimes you accidentally violate the terms of your probation. It could be forgetfulness, or not understanding the terms fully, or maybe something came up – whatever the reason, probation violations should be addressed quickly in order to avoid worsening penalties such as fines, more probation and jail time.
Your First Probation Violation – What Will Happen?
There’s no cookie cutter answer for that, but it all depends on your probation officer. So, stay on your PO’s good side. Your PO can choose to do a number of things. They can file a Motion to Revoke, or give you more probation conditions such as additional classes, evaluations and drug tests, or maybe just become a little stricter on you. Your PO will look at a few things when determining your punishment:
- Have you been on probation for a long time?
- Have you been good about following the terms of your probation up to this point?
- How bad was the violation? There’s a world of difference between getting stuck in traffic on your way to your meeting and being arrested for another crime.
- Do you treat your PO with respect, or are you difficult to work with?
A first offense won’t usually end with a Motion to Revoke, unless the offense was egregious.
So, if you do accidentally violate your probation, take control of the situation. If you are on good terms with your probation officer and have shown good behavior and have a good reason for the violation, get in touch as soon as possible and try to work it out. If you don’t think your PO will respond favorably, you might want to discuss your violation with a Texas probation lawyer.