Attorneys With an Unparalleled Track Record in Oakland County

The attorneys with LEWIS & DICKSTEIN, P.L.L.C. have decades of experience successfully representing clients charged with violating probation. We can help you you!

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Oakland County Probation Violation Attorneys

Violating the terms of your probation in Oakland County comes with heavy consequences in Michigan. In the mind of a judge, probation is already viewed as giving the offender a “break.” Probation is generally considered an alternative to jail and can allow a defendant to participate in education, therapy, and rehabilitation outside of jail. Violating the terms or conditions of probation is taken seriously. The most common ways someone violates their probation is through a failed drug test, missing a probation meeting with an officer, or failing to finish therapy or community service. Some individuals have been wrongly accused of violating probation. An experienced attorney can make a case for why the Oakland County violation of probation charge should be dropped if there is a false or exaggerated probation violation allegation. If the offender faces a new felony or misdemeanor criminal charge while on probation, this is also considered a violation.

“I’ve violated the terms of probation . . . Now what?”

The first step after a probation violation charge is a violation of probation arraignment. At the arraignment, the court will set a bond, and the case will be scheduled for a violation of probation hearing. The bond can be anything from a high cash bond to a personal recognizance bond. An emotional bond does not require money to be deposited with the court or jail. The next step after the arraignment is to appear before the court for a “probation violation hearing.” Appearing at an arraignment or a probation violation hearing without a trusted, experienced, and prepared attorney is a recipe for disaster. If you cannot afford an attorney or figure the quality of your representation does not matter, you can receive a court-appointed lawyer, but there are consequences.

Types of Probation Violation: Technical vs. Nontechnical

There are two types of probation violations: technical and nontechnical. A technical probation violation occurs when the probationer does something they were ordered not to do or fails to do something the judge ordered at a term or condition of their Oakland County probation. Nontechnical violations are defined by law.

Nontechnical probation violations:

  • Violating a no-contact order;
  • Failing to report to the probation officer for more than 60 days (absconding);
  • Felony or misdemeanor arrest; or
  • Consuming alcohol while on probation for felony Operating While Intoxicated (OWI).
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“How much time will I get in jail for an Oakland County probation violation?”

If a top defense attorney handles your probation violation, you may not have to spend any time in jail or prison. The team with LEWIS & DICKSTEIN, P.L.L.C. will explore every possible defense available to you. We have an unparalleled track record of achieving a lenient sentence when there is no alternative but to admit to a violation. We have helped many clients face a second or subsequent probation violation and avoid jail time.

Misdemeanor technical probation violation penalties:

  • first violation, jail for up to five (5) days
  • second violation, jail for up to 10 days
  • third violation, jail for up to 15 days
  • fourth or subsequent violations, jail for up to the maximum penalty for the original conviction offense

Felony technical probation violation penalties:

  • first violation, jail for up to 15 days.
  • second violation, jail for up to 30 days.
  • third violation, jail for up to 45 days.
  • fourth or subsequent violations, jail for up to the maximum penalty for the original conviction offense

Nontechnical probation violations:

Up to the maximum jail or prison available for the original conviction offense.

Defense Against an Oakland County Violation of Probation Charge

Defending against a probation violation charge in Oakland County, Michigan, involves addressing the alleged violations and presenting arguments that may persuade the court to avoid or mitigate the consequences. Judges in Oakland County tend to be some of the strictest in Michigan. With a solid factual, legal, or mitigating defense, someone facing a probation violation can avoid harsh consequences. Here are some potential reasons and strategies used by the Defense Team with LEWIS & DICKSTEIN, P.L.L.C.:

  • Lack of Willfulness: One common defense is demonstrating that the probation violation was not willful or intentional. If the violation occurred due to circumstances beyond the probationer’s control, such as a medical emergency, family crisis, or administrative error, the court may be more lenient. For example, assume someone puts vanilla in their coffee. This person might test positive for alcohol even though they did not consume an alcoholic beverage. In this case, the violation would not be willful.
  • Lack of Sufficient Evidence: Challenge the prosecution’s evidence regarding the alleged probation violation. The burden of proof is typically lower in probation violation hearings than in criminal trials, but your attorney can still question the evidence’s reliability and credibility. For example, suppose a probationer is accused of possessing a firearm based on a photo posted to Facebook. If the government cannot verify the firearm was real, as opposed to a prop or toy, they will be unable to prove the probation violation.
  • Compliance with the Terms: If you prove that you were in compliance with the terms of your probation or that you corrected the violation promptly, it may help your case. This might involve providing evidence of completing required programs, community service, or payment of fines.
  • Inadequate Notice: Ensure you received proper notice of the probation violation hearing, as due process requires timely notification. If you were not adequately informed, it could be a basis for challenging the violation. For example, suppose a probationer is violated and notified after the expiration of their probation term. In this case, the law requires the judge to dismiss the VOP.
  • Substantial Compliance: Argue that you substantially complied with the conditions of probation even if there were minor technical violations. Some courts may consider this argument, especially if the probationer has made substantial progress in rehabilitation or meeting other probation requirements.
  • Unforeseeable Circumstances: If the violation occurred due to unforeseeable and unavoidable circumstances, such as sudden unemployment or a change in living arrangements, you may be able to present this as a defense. For example, suppose a probationer is ordered to live at a particular address, and there is a fire. The person temporarily moves to another home. A savvy defense lawyer can argue that their client is innocent due to unforeseeable circumstances.
  • Rehabilitation and Efforts to Remedy: As an out-of-the-box defense, our attorneys may seek to demonstrate your commitment to rehabilitation by presenting evidence of your efforts to address the underlying issues that led to the violation. This might include enrolling in counseling, substance abuse treatment, or anger management programs. If a judge is convinced you are doing everything you can to rehabilitate, they might agree to dismiss or disregard a violation.
  • Overly Harsh Consequences: Argue that the Oakland County Probation Department’s proposed consequences are disproportionately harsh given the nature of the violation, your overall progress on probation, or the nature of the alleged violation.
  • Constitutional Rights Violation: If any of your constitutional rights were violated during the probation process, such as the right to counsel or protection against self-incrimination, this could be grounds for challenging the violation.
  • Request Alternative Sanctions: In some cases, proposing alternatives to jail or other, less severe sanctions than revocation of probation may be a viable strategy. This could involve increased supervision, additional counseling, or community service.

It’s essential to consult with an experienced criminal defense attorney in Oakland County who can assess the specific circumstances of your case, develop a tailored defense strategy, and advocate on your behalf during probation violation proceedings. Remember that probation violation hearings have a lower burden of proof than criminal trials, so seeking legal representation is crucial to protect your rights and minimize the potential consequences.

Michigan Criminal Defense Attorney

Not all defense attorneys are created equal. If you are paired with a defense attorney with little experience defending allegations of probation violation, you can almost count on the court revoking your probation and perhaps even incarceration. Hiring a bargain lawyer or a general practice attorney can result in the same fate. If you face a probation violation in Oakland County, you need LEWIS & DICKSTEIN, P.L.L.C., to represent you. With decades of experience successfully defending clients facing similar charges, they will use their knowledge and experience to fight for your freedom.

Most judges view the initial probation as a kind and merciful measure. There will be little tolerance when the same client leaves and breaks the agreement. It would be best to have a persuasive and seasoned attorney team to make your case. If you face charges of felony or misdemeanor probation violation in Oakland County, hiring LEWIS & DICKSTEIN, P.L.L.C., to represent you will be one of the best decisions you can make.

Call us today at (248) 263-6800 for a free consultation or complete an online Request for Assistance Form. We will contact you promptly and find a way to help you.

We will find a way to help you and, most importantly,
we are not afraid to win!

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