When an individual has been criminally convicted, one possible form of punishment is that of a probation sentence. While a probation sentence may seem much more lenient than imprisonment, it nonetheless carries distressing consequences for the criminally convicted individual.

When a person has been given a probation sentence, it is possible to obtain an early release from that probation for the individual. Under the State of New Jersey, judges have the legal authority to release individuals from a probation sentence before the expected date of completion. With the submission of an application from the defendant’s probation officer, the defendant, or the motion in itself, the court may discharge a defendant from a probation sentence at any given time.

Petitioning for an Early Termination of a Probation Sentence

Petitioning for an early termination of a probation sentence is not a simple proceeding. The process often entails detailed drafting and filing of important documents, done so in a timely manner. Further, a hearing before a judge is often required when petitioning to have a probation sentence terminated early in New Jersey.

One of the most important factors to consider when petitioning for an early termination of a probation sentence is to have the entirety of all fines paid off. Further, in order to be considered, most petitioners are required to have had completed his or her court ordered classes and other required treatments if there were any as part of the conviction. It is also important to keep in mind that when an individual is considering this petition, he or she will have a greater opportunity at being considered if the petitioner has completed at least half of the probation sentence. While length of probation completed is not a set number, the closer to completion the better. It will provide the court with more time to evaluate your actions within the terms of probation.

Other Elements That Can Affect a Petition

Unfortunately for many petitioners, having a decent current standing is not enough to satisfy the court for an early termination of a probation sentence approval. The defendant’s criminal background will also play a role in determining if the application will be approved. Other noteworthy elements include the defendant’s age at the time of the incident, the nature of the offence committed, and whether or not the defendant has complied with all of the conditions of his or her sentence.

When filing for a petition, it should be noted that defendants have a greater chance of being approved for an early termination of the sentence if his or her probation officer has recommended the petition. In order to obtain a good standing with a probation officer, it is vital that the petitioners had maintained appropriate behavior throughout the duration of the probation.