Probation StampProbation is a more desirable punishment than incarceration if you have been convicted of a crime in Virginia. However, you face harsh consequences if you violate the terms of your probation. On July 21, 2021, a new law went into effect that changed the period of probation and how a court handles probation violations. Here is what you need to know about how the new law may affect you if you are placed on probation.

Maximum Term of Probation Under the New Virginia Law

Under the prior law, a judge had the discretion to set the time a defendant could be placed on probation for as long as they wanted. Under the new rule, an individual sentenced to adult probation could only be sentenced to probation for these maximum time limits:

New Rules on Punishments for Technical Violations of Supervised Probation

The law also limits the punishments imposed for technical violations of the terms of supervised probation. Supervised probation is a common type of probation where a probation officer monitors the individual’s compliance with the terms of their probation. Technical violations are defined under Virginia Code §19.2-306.1 and include the failure of a probationer to do the following:

  • Maintain regular employment and notify the probation officer of changes in employment
  • Report any arrests, including traffic tickets, to the probation officer within three days of the arrest
  • Report to the probation officer within three days of release from jail or prison
  • Permit their probation officer to visit their home or place of employment
  • Follow the probation officer’s instructions and report to them as instructed, be cooperative, and be truthful
  • Not consume alcoholic beverages to the extent it interferes with their employment or causes them to engage in disorderly conduct
  • Refrain from using, possessing, or consuming drugs that are considered controlled substances or possessing drug paraphernalia
  • Not use, possess, own, or transport a gun
  • Obtain permission to move to another residence or remain in Virginia or another designated area without the probation officer’s permission
  • Maintain contact with their probation officer if the probation officer does not know their location

If there are multiple technical violations from a single incident or the violations are considered at the same probation revocation hearing, they would still be considered a single violation of probation. Under the new law, a sentence for a technical probation violation would be limited to the following:

  • First violation. No sentence of incarceration in jail or prison
  • Second violation. Maximum sentence of 14 days of incarceration
  • Third or subsequent violation. Imposition of any or all of the suspended sentence

Have you been charged with a crime or violation of probation in Virginia?

Our experienced criminal defense attorneys are here to defend you. Call our Manassas office at 888-DUI-LWYR or fill out our convenient online form to schedule your free initial consultation.


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