Sunday, October 19, 2014

Probation / Probation Violation / New Offense / Driving With No License / Driving with No License while on Probation / VOP / AVVO / Michael A. Haber, Esq. **ARRESTED / **305DUI

Q:    Asking about probation.  I am on supervised probation and I got a citation for no operating license. Can my probation officer valid me for this if I am up to date on my probation payments and this is my first offense.

Michael Adam Haber


Contributor Level 20
Answered I am not a NC lawyer so I cannot comment on matters of NC law or procedure. However, had you asked this question in Florida, where I have been a practicing criminal defense attorney for 23 years, then I would say that yes, you can be violated, IF driving without a license is a crime.

In FL a probationer must report any contact with law enforcement, even receiving a ticket. Further, and in Florida, driving with no license can either be a civil or a criminal offense, depending upon the circumstances. If it is criminal then the odds of being written up are excellent; if it is the civil infraction variety then the odds decrease, although in either event I would expect that your PO will be none to happy with your decision to get behind the wheel of a car while on probation and when you knew, or should have known , that you had no business driving a car.

In any State, being on probation is an alternative to incarceration. It is a gift of sorts, albeit it is given by an Indian giver who can take it back at any time (the alternative being jail). It behooves you to remember that at all times while serving your probationary period. It may help to think of your time on probation as walking on a tightrope. Stray just a little to either side, lose your concentration or balance even for a moment and you fall. However, instead of landing on the ground you land in jail or prison.

That said, in Florida violations of probation (VOP's) are very different than substantive (new) cases. The terms and conditions of probation make it such that any material and willful violation can result in a no bond hold, a bench (not a jury) hearing (trial) with lax rules of evidence, admissible hearsay and a reduced burden of proof (a "preponderance of evidence" - or "more likely than not"). What will happen in a given VOP primarily depends upon your Judge. In Miami (where I primarily practice) we have 45 criminal court Judges, some of whom are very strict and others who are more tolerant. I expect that the same holds true in Smithfield, NC as well.

My advise: 1) Get a license; 2) Do not drive anything other than a bicycle again until you have a license; 3) Hire a Smithfield, NC area lawyer to handle your citation; and 4) Engage that lawyer in a meaningful consultation and get yourself some advise which is legally sound and has been custom tailored as possible to meet your specific reasonable needs in your unique case.

A skilled and experienced criminal defense lawyer may be able to piece together a persuasive packet of materials which hopefully will be sufficient to convince your Judge that action favorable to you in your case is in everyone's best interests.

In the interim, and although you are a NC probationer, you might consider taking a look at my Avvo Legal Guide on surviving probation / CC in Florida as it contains a great deal of information on the subject and may prove to be helpful to you. For your convenience a link follows:

Please see:

I hope that I have been helpful in answering your question.
First, second and third: No attorney-client relationship exists by virtue of any Q&A with Michael A. Haber, Esq. on Avvo. Fourth: Anything that you post on Avvo (or on similar sites) or on any social media is by its nature public. It is essentially an admission / confession and can be introduced into evidence as a statement against your interest in a subsequent legal proceeding. Once posted you lose any reasonable expectation of privacy, so, as this is an open forum (with no privilege attached), please be extra careful when considering what to post online (forewarned is forearmed.) 

For more than 23 years Michael A. Haber, P.A. has been providing creative, effective and zealous advocacy and counsel in cases ranging from DUI to drug trafficking and from misdemeanors to first degree murder.  

At Michael A. Haber, P.A. "Its all about reasonable doubt"!

Michael A. Haber, Esq. is prepared to speak with you about your case!

1-888-SHARK-8-1, 305-381-8686, 305-798-2220, **ARRESTED, **305DUI, **MIAMIDUI, **MIAMILAW or **HABERLAW.

Follow Michael A. Haber, P.A. on Facebook by going to the following link and clicking the "Like" button: 

No comments:

Post a Comment