How The Texas Juvenile Court System Works
Children aged 10 to 16 who are charged with criminal acts in Texas are most often tried in juvenile court. While the records of most youthful offenders are sealed, it can be disruptive and stressful to have to worry about what is going to happen to your child if they are convicted.
At The Ramage Law Group, we believe the future of all children is worth fighting for. That includes children who made mistakes in judgment or associated with those who were bad influences on their behavior. If your child is facing a charge in juvenile court, we can assess their situation and quickly formulate a plan to provide a strong defense.
What Happens In A Juvenile Court Case
The Texas juvenile justice system gives courts a great deal of flexibility in handling youths accused of criminal charges. Ideally, this means adolescents who need treatment and education instead of incarceration will receive it. A short overview of the criminal justice process for juveniles looks like this:
- After a youth is arrested, they will receive a detention hearing within a day. They may either be released into their parents’ or guardian’s custody, or they may be kept in detention until their trial.
- Juveniles ages 14 or older accused of serious felonies may be given a transfer hearing to determine if they should be moved into the adult criminal justice system.
- An adjudication hearing is the juvenile equivalent of an adult criminal trial. A youth who pleads not guilty will participate in this hearing and may be represented by a lawyer.
- If a youth accused of a crime is found guilty at the adjudication hearing, or they plead guilty from the beginning, they receive their sentence at a disposition hearing.
Our firm’s attorneys will review the evidence against your child and explore less disruptive options of correction available, such as the First Offender Program, probation, referral to juvenile drug court, or deferred prosecution.
Safeguard Your Child’s Future After A Mistake
Young people in trouble deserve a second chance. We help families residing in the north Dallas metropolitan area — including the cities of Frisco, McKinney, Plano and Allen, Texas — with understanding Collin County and Denton County juvenile law. To discuss your child’s situation, call 469-207-1079 or email our firm to set up a confidential appointment with a juvenile criminal defense lawyer.