California’s Assembly Bill 1950 went into effect on January 1, 2021, shortening the probation periods for many offenses statewide. And AB 1950, which amends sections 1203a and 1203.1 of the Penal Code, might come as a pleasant surprise to some California probationers.
Previously, the probation term for most felony offenses was up to five years, while misdemeanors were subject to up three years of probation. Of course, certain crimes like domestic violence, driving under the influence, white collar offenses and strike offenses were exceptions that triggered longer probationary periods.
Now, with the implementation of AB 1950, most felony probationary periods are limited to two years, and misdemeanors are limited to one year. However, the old exceptions—for domestic violence, driving under the influence, etc.—remain unchanged.
Only a few weeks into 2021, some courts and attorneys are now sparring over whether the law is retroactive—meaning, essentially, whether it should apply to individuals sentenced to probation even before the law went into effect. For now, courts appear to be taking the position that yes, it also applies to current probationers that were sentenced even before the new law kicked in.
So, what does that mean for your current probation status? Well, if your conviction is eligible under AB 1950, you might be entitled to modify the length of your probation to the new, lower term. And in some instances, if you have already successfully completed that lower term, you may be eligible to terminate your probation altogether.
If you are currently on probation for a criminal case in San Diego and would like to learn more about your eligibility under AB 1950 and your best options moving forward, give us a call at (619) 295-3555 to set up a case evaluation.
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