When you are facing a probation violation for a misdemeanor case in Miami-Dade or Broward County Court, your probation officer will submit an probation violation affidavit to the court. If the court finds that a violation of the terms and conditions of your probation has been committed, they will issue a warrant for your arrest.
Most probation violation warrants have bond amounts attached. That means that if you are taken into custody for your violation, you can post a bond. Felony probation warrants are non-bondable.
In Miami-Dade County, sometimes a warrant will not be issued. Your misdemeanor probation officer will submit a report to the court and then a hearing will be set. You and your criminal attorney must attend this hearing.
If the violation is monetary (money owed) or some involves a condition that remains outstanding, your attorney could ask the court to hold the affidavit in abeyance until that condition is met. For instance, if you owe community service hours, you could agree to complete them in a set period of time. In exchange, the court will not act on the violation.
Pleas in misdemeanor probation violation cases can vary. For first-time offenders, your attorney may be able to negotiate re-enrolling you in probation. If the violation is egregious, it is not your first violation, and you have priors, the state may seek a revocation of your probation and may ask the judge to sentence you to jail.
You face the statutory maximum for your crime. That means that if you are charged with battery and you are placed on probation for 6 months, you face up to 1 year in jail on a violation minus any time you have already served on probation. That’s because the statutory maximum for a battery is 1 year in jail.
Misdemeanor domestic violence probation is much different and has different requirements. Bonds for violating probation in misdemeanor domestic violence cases tend to be much higher. The conditions of misdemeanor domestic violence probation are also much more stringent.
Eric Matheny is a probation violation lawyer representing clients in Miami and Broward.