Understanding Probation in Illinois

Illinois defense attorney, Illinois probation lawyer, Illinois criminal lawyer,Are you facing criminal charges in Illinois? Depending on the severity of the crime you are accused of committing, you may be eligible for probation instead of facing jail time. A qualified Illinois criminal defense attorney can review the charges you are facing and advise you if you may be allowed probation over a harsher sentence. What does probation entail, and who is eligible? Below, we explore important facts about probation in Illinois.

What Is Probation?

Probation offers criminal offenders significantly more freedom while serving their sentences. The offender is able to serve their sentence while living in their community but under the close watch of their probation officer. Those on probation must follow certain terms set by the court and the individual’s actions are observed closely. Probation can be offered immediately after being found guilty, or it can be a portion of a larger sentence including jail time.

Sentencing lengths for probation depend on the severity of the crime committed. Most probation sentences range from one to three years, though sentences can be shorter or longer depending on the case.

As said earlier, not every offense is eligible for probation. If an offender has committed a minor crime and has never been convicted before, they may be sentenced to probation instead of jail time. Probation is still considered a conviction and will be listed on your record, but it is a nicer alternative to prison.

Probation Terms

When sentenced to probation, each offender is given specific terms that they must meet at all times. While specific terms are set on a case by case basis, some common terms of probation include:

  • Reporting on a regular basis to a probation officer;
  • Paying fines assessed by the court;
  • Appearing at required court appearances;
  • Obeying all laws at all times;
  • Not committing any crimes;
  • Attending treatment for substance abuse;
  • Community service;
  • Drug and alcohol testing; and
  • Not traveling out of state unless approved in advance

Violating Probation

Those sentenced to probation would be wise not to violate their probation terms, and those who do violate their terms may face jail time or a longer period of probation. When a term of probation is violated, it is up to the assigned probation officer to determine if the violation warrants a warning or a more serious probation violation hearing. If a hearing is called for, a judge will determine if the probation terms were truly violated and will either assess additional fines, longer probation terms, revoke probation completely, or sentence the offender to jail time.

Quality Criminal Defense

Of course, not having a criminal conviction on your record is best. In some cases, however, charges may be unavoidable, and probation is certainly preferable to serving time in jail. If you are facing criminal charges and are curious about probation, consult a qualified Chicago criminal defense attorney immediately. The skilled team at the Law Offices of Hal M. Garfinkel LLC, Chicago Criminal Defense Attorney can review your case and advise you on your best defense. Call 312-270-0999 to schedule a free consultation with an experienced criminal defense attorney today.

 

Source:

http://www.ilga.gov/legislation/ilcs/fulltext.asp?DocName=072005700K410

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