Will I receive a probation violation if I have not completed my drug classes yet? 2 Answers as of February 05, 2011

I am on unsupervised probation for two years for a misdemeanor. I was asked to seek a drug evaluation and complete whatever is asked. I had a time limit on my drug evaluation, which I successfully completed by that time, but not given one on classes. The classes cost over a thousand dollars. I have not been financially secure enough to pay for classes , let alone my court fees and probation fees. The only way to get a job and a permanent place to live is to move out of state. I have been on probation for about ten months. My questions are , will I receive a probation violation for simply not being able to pay for these things and will this stop me from moving to another state? My probation officer is really understanding but I sort of lost contact with her after I lost my apartment, my phone and my job. She usually emailed me anyway, and just emailed me concerning classes. First one I have received for quite a few months. She wasn't stressing it, she simply just wanted to know if I was seeking or in treatment, then she emailed me again, setting up a phone appointment. I emailed her back explaining what was going on but still no word. Of course, I will not miss our appointment because I know that is a violation, but I want to have confidence, knowing I will be fine when we talk. I don't care if my probation is extended in order for me to move out of state, or even extended because of lack of payments. I just don't want to get into serious trouble, or stuck in a state that I have no support in. Please help, thank you. I am in Washington state.

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Andersen Law PLLC
Andersen Law PLLC | Craig Andersen
You're doing one thing right in staying in touch with your po. If you had a deadline and that has passed and you haven't been in class, the court could revoke jail time. Although if this is your first violation, they may go easy. Your best bet would be to talk your po about setting a court date to review your probation and to ask the court to allow you to move out of Washington to complete your treatment. Most judges understand when people can't afford all the programs they impose. Times are tough and if you get yourself into court before they summon or arrest you, you will be ahead of the game. I hope you can find work wherever you go because you are in a scary situation not having a roof over your head. If you find a job or shelter In another state, you need to let the court know and give them the specifics of what you're doing and where you are going. The other alternative is not good. You could have the court revoke the balance of your sentence and sit in jail. At the end of your jail time, your probation would be closed and you would have to decide if you want to continue treatment. The one thing I know for sure is that treatment works. That's the one thing you have control over so check out an NA meeting. The people there will be your moral support and may be able to hook you up with housing.

I wish you the best of luck in these tough times and I'm confident that things will get better if you address your treatment problem and are forthright and open with the court.
Answer Applies to: Washington
Replied: 2/5/2011
Law Office of Bill Montecucco
Law Office of Bill Montecucco | Bill Montecucco
It is common for judge's to sentence those convicted of misdemeanors to the maximum and then suspend a portion of the sentence pending completion of the terms. Each of the terms of the sentence is considered an alternative to jail time. While probation may have some patience working with those in difficult financial situations, once contact is lost they will cite it back into court for a probation violation and warrant if you do not appear. Make sure they have an updated address to at least receive your mail or you may have already gone to warrant status. It is not in your best interest to convince the judge that you cannot complete the treatment because they often will impose straight jail time while reassigning the treatment anyway. There is no easy way out other than to find a way to fund treatment and comply, appear and serve jail time. Please contact me if you have any additional questions and I'll do my best to help.
Answer Applies to: Washington
Replied: 2/4/2011
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