On Probation: I forgot about my probation appointment. What should I do now?

That sinking feeling starts as soon as you remember that you were supposed to report to your probation office yesterday and you completely forgot. Even though you go every month, work got busy, the kids were sick and you didn’t remember until this morning. Is all hope lost? No, but you need to take immediate action.

Call: You need to call your probation officer the minute you realize you missed an appointment. Your stomach may be in knots and your heart in your throat about making this call, but not making it guarantees bigger problems.

When you call, tell him you just now realized you missed the appointment. If he doesn’t pick up, leave a detailed message about what happened and a phone number so he can call you back.

Nagging as a force for good

Offer to come in: It really doesn’t matter where you are or what you are doing, nothing at this moment is more important than getting the missed report date straightened out. Not doing so could mean going to jail.

Offer to come into the probation office immediately. Let him know you are at work, home, church, etc, but that you are willing to come immediately if needed.

Most Probation Officers will tell you to finish your work shift, and come in later or the next day.  But if you have one of the tough ones, you may be told to report within the next hour.

Be prepared to test:  Go to the office ready to take a drug test. When an offender misses a report date it raises suspicions about why that happened. Even if you don’t get drug tested at every report date, you can pretty much take it to the bank you will be tested this time.

Be ready to relieve yourself. Drink juice or water before getting there so there is no problem providing a good-sized sample.

Final thoughts: An apology goes a long way. If you have been complying with all the rules of probation and your drug test comes out clean, you should be okay, but there are no guarantees. Missing a report date is a serious matter, one that could get you violated, so if it happens once, do your best to be sure it doesn’t happen again.

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About Mark Miclette 682 Articles
writes about inmates, jails, prisons, courts and the lives of people who live and work within the United States Criminal Justice System. His mission can be summed up in a single word; transparency.