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Have you been sentenced to community service?

If you have recently been convicted of criminal wrongdoing and sentenced to community service, you may have conflicted emotions about your fate. On the one hand, you may be pleased that you were sentenced to serve the community instead of a harsher punishment. On the other hand, you may be nervous and annoyed about fulfilling your community service requirements.

What is most important to remember about fulfilling community service requirements is that it is okay to ask questions. If you are confused about what kinds of opportunities you have to meet your requirement, when you have to meet your requirement by or how you need to go about reporting your hours, feel free to ask your attorney. It is a far better idea to ask whatever questions you have than to resist asking and risk a harsher judgment against you if you fail to fulfill your hours properly.

It is especially important to ask your attorney any questions you may have about specific requirements because these requirements may vary by jurisdiction. You may be restricted to certain kinds of opportunities. As a result, it is important not to simply sign up for volunteer opportunities expecting that these will fulfill your requirements specifically.

It is also important that you obtain all required signatures and paperwork so that the court can properly monitor your progress. Without these critical components, you may miss out on having certain hours of service count towards your total requirement. And should you fail to meet your requirement by the deadline set by the court, you could land in truly hot water.

Source: Findlaw Blotter, “What Counts as Community Service?” Daniel Taylor, Feb. 2, 2015

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Law Offices of Jere N. Sullivan, Jr.
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Fax: 805-543-3210
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