If you fail a drug test while on probation in Pennsylvania, you will receive a warning from your probation officer and may face a probation revocation hearing. The possible penalties handed down during this type of hearing could include:
- Revocation of your probation;
- Increasing the conditions of your probation; and
- Court-ordered substance abuse treatment or counseling.
These are only the extreme possibilities that could happen when you violate probation for failing a drug test in Pennsylvania. There is no way to know exactly how the judge will handle your case until the team at the McKenzie Law Firm, P.C., can review the entire situation and analyze your options for minimizing the consequences you face. Call 610-680-7842 for a free consultation with a probation violation lawyer.
What Happens If I Fail a Drug Test on Probation?
Your probation officer will likely notify you about your failed drug test. They will issue a warning about any drug use violating your probation. After this warning, they will tell you if they plan to take action by turning your case over to the judge for a violation hearing.
If you believe you may fail a drug test—or if your probation officer notified you of a violation—give us a call. We can help you understand what to expect and ensure your rights remain protected throughout the process.
Will I Need to Appear in Front of a Judge?
If your probation officer turns you over to the judge, you will need to prepare for a probation violation hearing. While the judge has the authority to revoke your probation for failing a drug test, this is unlikely to happen for a first-time violation.
Depending on the circumstances of your case, your probation officer may place you under arrest at the time they notify you of the violation. If this occurs, you will have your probation violation hearing within two business days of your arrest, under Pennsylvania law.
During your hearing, we can represent you to the judge and present you in the best possible light. We will fight to mitigate the effect this violation has on your future and attempt to reduce the consequences you face.
What Legal Penalties Will I Face for a Failed Drug Test?
The judge may impose up to three days imprisonment for any violation of probation or revoke your probation entirely. A failed drug test is a technical violation of your probation. While this type of probation violation is generally not as serious as facing charges for a new criminal offense, the legal penalties could be the same depending on the circumstances of your case.
It is important to consider the full range of possible consequences of this type of violation and how it could affect you and your family. Because of the possibility of incarceration or other significant penalties, many people choose to have a probation violation attorney offer support and guidance during this process. The earlier you enlist our help, the more time we have to craft a solid defense on your behalf.
Could I Face Other Consequences?
With any probation violation, the judge has the option to revoke your probation and send you to jail for the remainder of your original sentence. However, this is unlikely for your first failed drug test. They may instead modify the terms of your probation, restricting your lifestyle or mandating you attend drug rehabilitation or counseling. We can examine your case, help you understand the possible outcome based on the facts of your situation, and represent your best interests to the judge.
Other possible consequences may include:
- Extending your probation;
- Ordering community service; and
- Altering the terms of your probation in some other way.
If you fail additional drugs tests while on probation, the judge is unlikely to take it easy on you. You may face a choice between inpatient drug rehabilitation or incarceration. Either one will take you away from work or school, and may make it difficult to care for your family. It could have a devastating effect on every aspect of your life.
We strive to minimize the penalties you face after any probation violation, so you can get back to your normal schedule as soon as possible. Often, we can ask the judge to require drug abuse counseling or other penalties that better fit your lifestyle instead of imposing more severe consequences or adding terms to your probation.
How Can I Talk to a Pennsylvania Probation Violation Attorney About My Failed Drug Test?
Criminal defense lawyer David C. McKenzie III and the legal team from the McKenzie Law Firm, P.C., can protect your rights after a failed drug test. Call our office today at 610-680-7842 for a review of your case. Let us fight for you.