Understanding Violation of Probation in Georgia: Laws, Consequences, and Case Law

What is a probation violation in Georgia?

Probation is an alternative to incarceration, allowing individuals to remain in the community while under supervision. However, violating the terms and conditions of probation can have serious consequences that can land someone in jail or prison.


This blog post aims to provide an easily-readable and concise overview of probation violations in Georgia, including some key laws, potential consequences, and notable case law precedents. We are probation violation lawyers.

I. Understanding Probation Violation in Georgia:

  1. Definition of Probation: Probation is a court-ordered alternative to imprisonment that allows individuals to serve their sentences under community supervision while following specific conditions set by the court.
  2. Types of Probation Violations: Probation violations in Georgia can be categorized as technical violations or substantive violations. Technical violations occur when individuals fail to comply with the specific terms of their probation, while substantive violations involve committing new criminal offenses during the probation period.

II. Georgia Statutes and Case Law:

  1. O.C.G.A. § 42-8-34: This statute outlines the authority of the court to revoke probation upon finding that a violation has occurred. It also provides guidance on the procedures and options available to the court in handling probation violations.
  2. State v. Griggs (1999): In this case, the Georgia Supreme Court held that a probation violation warrant must state with particularity the nature of the alleged violations. This case emphasizes the importance of providing specific and detailed information when alleging a probation violation.
  3. Georgia Code § 42-8-38: This statute outlines the procedures for probation revocation hearings, including the right to counsel, presentation of evidence, and the burden of proof required to establish a violation.
  4. State v. Williams (2011): In this case, the Georgia Court of Appeals clarified that the burden of proof in a probation revocation hearing rests on the state, which must establish the violation by a preponderance of the evidence. The court stressed the importance of ensuring a fair and impartial hearing in probation violation cases.

III. Consequences of Probation Violation:

  1. Revocation of Probation: If a probation violation is proven, the court has the authority to revoke probation and impose the original sentence, which may include imprisonment.
  2. Alternative Consequences: In some cases, the court may opt for alternative consequences rather than revoking probation entirely. These can include modifying the conditions of probation, imposing additional requirements, or extending the probationary period.
  3. Increased Penalties: If a substantive violation involves committing a new criminal offense, the individual may face additional charges and penalties for the new offense in addition to the probation violation.
  4. Rehabilitation Programs: Depending on the circumstances, the court may order participation in rehabilitation programs, such as substance abuse treatment or anger management, as a condition of probation continuation.

IV. Defenses and Legal Representation:

  1. Challenging the Violation: Individuals accused of probation violations have the right to challenge the allegations and present a defense. Common defenses may include lack of intent, false accusations, or failure to provide proper notice of the probation terms.
  2. Importance of Legal Representation: It is highly recommended to seek legal representation if facing probation violation charges. An experienced attorney can assess the case, protect your rights, and present a strong defense on your behalf.


Understanding the laws and precedents surrounding probation violations in Georgia is crucial for individuals on probation and those navigating the legal system. This blog post has provided an overview of probation violation concepts, relevant statutes, case law, potential consequences, and the importance of legal representation. It is essential to consult with a qualified attorney for personalized advice and guidance tailored to your specific circumstances.

We are probation violation attorneys and if you’re facing a violation of probation, call us now.

Contact Our Offices

Whether you have questions or you’re ready to get started, our legal team is ready to help. Complete our form below or call us at (678) 712-8561.

  • Please enter your first name.
  • Please enter your last name.
  • Please enter your phone number.
    This isn't a valid phone number.
  • Please enter your email address.
    This isn't a valid email address.
  • Please make a selection.
  • Please enter a message.