Is Early Discharge from Probation Possible

By | February 18, 2011

Sometimes clients ask me to get them released from their probation early. Before the client can hire me, I talk to them and evaluate whether they have a chance to get off early.

If they don’t have a reasonably good chance of succeeding on the motion for early termination, then I’d rather just tell them that so they can keep their money.

Anyway, here are some factors that will affect whether a judge will grant early release from probation.

Suppose you are on a two-year probation for an assault case. The conditions of your probation include that you perform 100 hours of Community Service Restitution (“CSR”), pay a $600 fine, pay court costs, and participate in a anger management group therapy, and attend two alcoholics anonymous meetings per week.

Ask yourself these questions.

  1. Are you completely up-to-date on paying all of your fees and fines? When I say up-to-date, I mean have you paid the entire $600 fine off?
  2. Have you done all of your CSR hours? I’m asking whether you have done all 100 hours, not just whether you have stayed up-to-date with the number of hours you are supposed to do each month.
  3. Have you missed any meetings with your probation officer?

Here’s an important factor. Has more than one half of your probation passed by?

You may have already looked up law and noticed that sometimes you only have to have completed one third of your probation before you can move for early release. That is what the statute requires, but to be perfectly honest it is not what most of the judges usually require.

What many judges frequently require is that at least half the term of probation has gone by. So even though one third of the the 24 months you’re required to serve is eight months, you really just need to wait the other four months out, because most judges in because the judges in Travis County simply will not grant a motion for early release when only one third of the term of probation has passed by.