How likely is it for a person on probation to have it revoked for being behind on restitution?

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How likely is it for a person on probation to have it revoked for being behind on restitution?

I am halfway through a 5 year probation sentence (I never served prison time) for “providing false information on a federal document.” I am several months behind on restitution payments (which have already been lowered). I was sent a letter saying my probation may be revoked for “willfully refusing to pay” my restitution. I have simply been unable to pay. I know they may garnish my wages if I am not sent to prison, but that doesn’t make sense either. It will be 25% of what I make. If the court recognized I couldn’t make the payments before, how is it reasonable to take so much from my check?

Asked on July 31, 2011 Utah

Answers:

M.T.G., Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 9 years ago | Contributor

Here is the thing: your reasoning makes sense when looking at the matter in the abstract.  But the reality is that the restitution is part of the probation requirements and if you do not make the restitution then you are violating probation.  And in violating probation then probation can indeed be revoked.  So this is what I would do.  Make some effort to making some payments and seek help from your attorney or legal aid in looking in to what you can do about ;lowering the payment s again so that you can make them  You may have to make smaller payments for a longer period of time.  What ever you can do.  Just get help. 

M.T.G., Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 9 years ago | Contributor

Here is the thing: your reasoning makes sense when looking at the matter in the abstract.  But the reality is that the restitution is part of the probation requirements and if you do not make the restitution then you are violating probation.  And in violating probation then probation can indeed be revoked.  So this is what I would do.  Make some effort to making some payments and seek help from your attorney or legal aid in looking in to what you can do about ;lowering the payment s again so that you can make them  You may have to make smaller payments for a longer period of time.  What ever you can do.  Just get help. 


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