One of the least harsh, but still time-consuming penalties is Court-Mandated Community Service in Georgia. A judge can also order community service for some traffic violations such as:
These are just a few examples. Clients usually have questions about the different details about community service, so as a Georgia DUI Lawyer, I'm hoping to clear up some of the confusion in today's post.
“Where can I do my community service?”
Always check to see if the court that mandated your community service approves of the organization you've chosen. Most of the time, your community service must be done at a non-profit organization. Some courts may allow schools or churches, but always check first because some jurisdictions will not credit it as non-profit.
“Do I have to tell the organization that I am court-ordered?”
Yes. Whatever organization you choose, you must notify them that you are court-ordered by law. You must give them information about how many hours of community service you have to complete and tell them the nature of your offense. These organizations do have the right to reject your volunteer work.
“Should I document my hours?”
Absolutely. I always remind my clients to properly document all community service hours even if the organization claims to do it for you. You need to provide a record for the court of your completion of the community service you've been ordered to do. I recommend not only recording every day you work, but also every hour. And always sign in and out on the organization's log sheet as well. Do this as you go. Attempting to verify your hours after-the-fact is actually much more difficult than people think.
“Should I complete my hours before my court date?”
I actually encourage all of my clients to complete their hours before we go to court. This is regardless of whether or not they are contesting the charges. I've said it before, and I will say it again – never trust an attorney who guarantees you the outcome of your case. We cannot guarantee the outcome. Having all the conditions of probation completed before going to court allows your Georgia DUI Attorney to argue for less punishment even in the worst-case scenario when a client is found guilty of DUI. It also increases our negotiating leverage with the prosecutor.
These are some of the questions that I regularly get asked about community service in Georgia. I hope this post provides a general overview of court-mandated community service. If you or a loved one has been charged with a DUI in Georgia, contact us today. We will work day and night for your case and keep you informed every step of the way.