Unfortunately, a conviction for any crime, but especially a crime of domestic violence, is only the beginning of a long process in the criminal justice system. Most people think that, if you have been convicted for a crime, once the fines have been paid and the jail time has been served, everything goes back to normal. However, this is just not the case, particularly in a domestic violence situation.
Following a conviction for domestic violence, after any jail time has been served and after any fines have been paid, there is still probation to get through, as well as numerous other collateral consequences of the conviction. Each one of these collateral consequences can be devastating, but the impact that they will have on your life will depend on your circumstances. Probation, however, is something that nearly anyone who gets convicted for a domestic violence crime will have to go through.
Different Courts Have Different Probation Systems
Even though probation is widespread and nearly everyone convicted for domestic violence will have to through it, each court in Washington handles the process of probation slightly differently. One of the main reasons for the different probation systems is the size of the court issuing the probation order. Larger courts with larger caseloads typically have an entire department for probation, employing several probation officers to handle things. Smaller courts, on the other hand, often have their own courthouse staff overseeing probation requirements, in addition to their other roles in court.
Similarities in Probation Requirements
While there are differences in how each court handles probation following a criminal conviction, there are also some important similarities, as well.
For example, all of the probation requirements for domestic violence convictions can be broken down into two groups: Prohibitive and affirmative requirements. Only by abiding by these requirements can you pass through the probation process and back to your ordinary life.
Prohibitive Probation Requirements
Prohibitive probation requirements are those that limit you in some way or another. Following a domestic violence conviction, some of the more common prohibitive requirements are to not have contact with the other people that were involved in your case, and not to commit certain crimes related to domestic violence, like assault or stalking.
Affirmative Probation Requirements
Unlike prohibitive requirements, which dictate what you cannot do in order to get through probation, affirmative probation requirements set out the things that you have to do to pass. Following a domestic violence conviction in the Seattle area, one of the affirmative probation requirements is to complete a state-certified domestic violence treatment program that lasts an entire year.
Skilled Domestic Violence Attorneys Guide You Through the Probation Process, Too
Experienced domestic violence attorneys understand that a conviction is not the end of the legal situation. Probation and further collateral consequences linger for years afterwards, and require constant legal work to make sure they do not have too much of an impact on your life. Call the law office of Steve Karimi today at (206) 621-8777 or contact him online.