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How do I request a new probation officer?

Kingston, NY |

My probation officer doesn't ever return my calls. I missed an appointment in October, because my dog was hit by a car and I was at the vets trying to save her. (success!) I immediately called her, apologized, explained and it took 4 weeks to get a call back after 7-8 messages. She just did a home visit end of January, told me to call beginning of Feb to set another appt. I called, left her a message, and no response. So today, I get a message saying I missed our last appt (which was never scheduled!!) And I have to come in on Wed. She KNOWS my daughter has surgery wed. I have just left her a message but I know how this goes. Also, for some reason, she only drug tests me on the visits I have my kids with me. Never any other time. Breath test too, and Im allowed alcohol not that I drink.

Thanks :) Its just frustrating, since I am a single mom, in college, and this was a family related issue, which I didn't do. The family member even stated during the presentence investigation that he didn't want to see me go to jail or have any real punishment. He was more trying to save his own skin, and I didn't have anymore money or strength to fight, so i accepted the Plea. Now - I wish I hadn't. I appreciate the advice!! One last thanks!! She was very nice today, and after only 6 months of 3 years is talking early release.....WOHOOOO!

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Attorney answers 3


I would advise speaking with your probation officer regarding your concerns. If your situation does not improve, you may express your concerns to the chief probation officer & request a new probation officer. There are no guarantees that you would receive a new probation officer under those circumstances.

Juan C. Garcia, Jr.
Attorney At Law


The New York Probation Department website states the following on the FAQs Page:

"If you have questions, concerns or complaints regarding a particular probation officer or department, please be advised that such issues should first be addressed with the probation officer’s supervisor and/or the Director of that department. If after having written to the Probation Department Director concerning your problem, you are not satisfied, you may file a written complaint with the NYS Division of Probation and Correctional Alternatives (OPCA). All correspondence to OPCA should be sent to the attention of the State Director at 80 Wolf Road, Albany, New York 12205."


As I often tell my clients, your probation officer doesn't have to be your best friend but they can become your worst enemy. In other words, you don't have to kiss their ass, but don't piss them off either. Just be mature and respectful. If the messages you are leaving your PO are rude, demeaning, or otherwise less than humbly apologetic you will create problems for yourself. Keep it simple. Leave your name, a short message with an apology (leaving out remarks such as "this is my 7th message"), and the best time and number for you to be called back.

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