Exactly what is Probation and what constitutes a Violation of Probation in New York?

The duration and conditions of probation are terms that are included in a probation order that is issued by a sentencing judge. The order enumerates the rules and conditions the probationer is agreeing to and must adhere to. While far from exhaustive some requirements that are typical of a probation order include: reporting to an officer, paying costs and fees, community service requirements, agreement to submit to random alcohol or drug tests, travel restrictions, residence restrictions, agreeing to avoid further arrests, and many more. Sometimes the conditions of the probation can be so onerous or unreasonably enforced that a violation of them is practically unavoidable. Other times circumstances may victimize the well-meaning probationer.

What happens now that I have violated my Probation?

To put it simply, a probation violation occurs when a person fails to fully comply with one or more of the requirements or conditions in their probation order. When the alleged violation is reported to the court, the court may direct the filing of a Violation of Probation or Petition to Revoke (VOP or PTR). The Department of Probation then must be able to demonstrate to a judge by a preponderance of the evidence that a probation condition was violated. The violation may have been administrative in nature, that is, it was a technical violation such as a failure to make a report that is alleged. The alleged violation may also go to the core of the probation terms such as repeating the criminal act or being arrested for other criminal conduct.

Both types of violations can result in the revocation of probation and the imposition of a new sentence that could include jail time.

Accepting the terms of a probation order means that you have accepted a limitation to your freedom in exchange for avoiding serving a jail or prison sentence.  However, as discussed above, the failure to submit to any part of your order can lead to a probation violation. Unfortunately, the most common reason for probation violations is that the person is charged with committing a misdemeanor or felony while on probation.

Common Reasons for Probation Violations in New York

Some of the more common reasons I see which trigger a Violation of Probation in New York are:

  • Failure to submit to or testing positive in a court mandated drug or alcohol testing
  • Altering or diluting the sample to conceal drug or alcohol use
  • Failure to attend or complete court-ordered treatment
  • Failure to complete community service
  • Failure to contact or meet with your probation officer
  • Failure to pay court-ordered restitution
  • Violating travel restrictions
  • Curfew violations
  • Failure to report an address change
  • Visiting prohibited people or places

Victor Knapp, Probation Violation Attorney

A probation violation can clearly occur under a number of circumstances by a probationer who is simply careless. Because of the wide variety of circumstances, it is important that an attorney reviews the specific violations being alleged. Its shocking the  great deal of discretion and freedom a Judge has in violation hearings, and the Judge’s decision may be difficult to appeal after the fact. An experienced attorney can put together a compelling defense and improve your chance of avoiding harsh consequences.

Violation of Probation Charges in New York is serious. Contact us for help.

Victor Knapp has been in private practice as a criminal defense lawyer since 1981, and has offices directly across the street from the Criminal Courthouse in Kew Gardens, New York. He has successfully represented thousands of persons, including high profile targets, accused or suspected of committing drug offenses throughout his legal career during the investigatory, arraignment, conference, Grand Jury, Pre-trial suppression, trial and post-conviction stages. He practices throughout the New York areas and he is available 24/7 for emergencies as well as for all state cases on Long Island, Brooklyn, Bronx, Manhattan and Westchester / upstate New York and for federal cases nationwide.

When you need a Violation of Probation criminal defense lawyer, Victor Knapp is here to serve you. With offices conveniently located in Kew Gardens, the practice is uniquely situated to serve clients in Queens, Brooklyn, Long Island, and the five-borough area. To arrange for a private case evaluation, call (718) 263-9000 at any time or day or night. You can also contact us online.

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    Mr. Victor Knapp is a Criminal Defense Lawyer in Kew Gardens neighborhood of Queens, New York.  Many say that he is the best Criminal Defense Lawyer in Queens and the surrounding neighborhoods of Jamaica, Forest Hills, Bayside, Woodside, Elmhurst, Jackson Heights, Queens Village, Bellerose, Fresh Meadows, Glendale, Richmond Hill, Ozone Park, Glen Oaks, Howard Beach, Middle Village, Ridgewood, Long Island City, as well as other communities in the counties of Brooklyn, Bronx, Manhattan, and Staten Island, including Nassau County, Suffolk County and on the East End (Hamptons) of Long Island.


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