Probation Department FAQ
Programs & Services
The mission of the Fulton County Probation Department is to affect positive change in juvenile and criminal offender behavior through the use of evidence based probation practice, consistent with the rules and regulations set forth by the New York State Office of Probation and Correctional Alternatives, which enhances public safety through the reduction of recidivism.
Probation occurs immediately following sentencing AFTER a person has been convicted of a crime and may or may not include jail time, Community Service, Restitution, and / or other measures intended to to achieve accountability and positive change.
Parole supervision occurs AFTER an individual has served a state mandated portion of their prison sentence and is once again permitted to re-enter the community but required continued supervision until the term of their prison sentence has reached its maximum date.
Restitution is either part of or the entirety of a sentence given by a judge after a person has been convicted of a crime and is payable to the Probation Department on behalf of the victim.
A court fine or court fees are a result of a statutory obligation imposed by the judge mandated by the State of New York that also occurs after a person is sentenced but is payable to the Court directly.
**A common question regarding where D.N.A. Fees should be paid often arises after sentencing and the answer is that ALL court fees, including the D.N.A. fee, needs to be paid to the court. While Probation collects the D.N.A. sample itself, we do not handle the money to process the sample.
What does that mean?
Once an individual has either pled guilty to or has been convicted via a trial for a crime committed in Fulton County, the presiding judge will typically order a P.S.I., or a Pre-Sentence Investigation prior to the individual being sentenced in court.
However, a Pre-Sentence Investigation is required with convictions resulting in a Youthful Offender status, if an Offender is sentenced to any period of Probation supervision, or if a Defendant is sentenced to a period of incarceration six months or longer. A Pre-Sentence Investigation requires the convicted individual to cooperate with the Probation Department in the form of an interview to gather demographic facts and information regarding the Defendant and the Defendant’s account or statement of what occurred leading to their arrest and subsequent conviction.
The Pre-Sentence Investigation also includes information from the arresting officer, a section for the court to review the Defendant’s legal history prior to the current conviction and arrest, and an opportunity for the victim (if there is one) to make a statement to the court regarding the offense committed against them.
Lastly, there is an evaluation of all the information gathered for the Probation Officer to make a recommendation regarding the Defendant’s sentence and their overall impression of the Defendant and the crime committed.
The Youthful Offender (“Y.O.”) Statute was enacted to give defendants between 16 and 18 years of age a chance not to live with the stigma of a criminal record. Basic guidelines for eligibility are for youths aged 13 through 18 years old charged with crimes.
Age is determined at the time of the offense.
If the Judge grants the Defendant a Youthful Offender status, then the criminal conviction is set aside and a youthful adjudication is given.
One of the benefits to a Youthful Offender status granted by the court is: No criminal record. If you're ever asked have you been convicted of a crime, the truthful answer would be no.
*Refer to your attorney for more specific details*
When you fail to follow the conditions of your probation your actions may rise to the level of a violation of probation. (VOP)
A VOP is a legal means to return you to court to face the judge who sentenced you. If you fail to follow any of your conditions or you get arrested, your Probation Officer may return your case to court.
There will be a court hearing and if found in violation of your probation, you may be sentenced to alternative programs, or your probation sentence may be revoked and you may be sentenced to jail or prison.
You must report on the day and time your Probation Officer tells you to.
If you have an emergency or illness that prevents you from keeping your appointment, call and speak directly to your Probation Officer or their Supervisor.
The Fulton County Probation Department recognizes the importance of sustained employment for individuals under community supervision. Employment provides individuals a means to self-sufficiency and the ability to support their families, as well as the capacity to structure their time in positive ways.
Probation also understands the needs of area employers and their ability to ask questions of probation officers about work schedules and other work environment related issues. Accordingly, the Fulton County Probation Department has designated a single point of contact or Probation Employment Liaison officer to communicate with area employers.
Please contact the Probation Department with any questions at 518-773-3565 if you are an area employer who has any general questions about probation conditions relating to employment, employment opportunities for individuals on probation, or if you have any other employment related questions or concerns.