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I am on probation(misdemeanor-theft x shoplifting-under $75). Can I go on an international flight without reprimand?

Duluth, GA |

I used the first offender act. All I am asked to do is show up monthly for probation. I am aware this is a minor offense, but I had this planned for a while. I have dual citizenship. I do not plan on returning. I just want to know if I would be detained when I try to leave the country. My paperwork says I cannot leave jurisdiction of the court without it's permission. Court jurisdiction is in Lilburn, GA.

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Attorney answers 3


You would probably not be stopped as you leave the country but it would be a violation of your probation as you indicted to do so. If your probation officer initiates a probation revocation against you then you will probably have your first offender probation revoked and you would have a conviction on your record for the rest of your life. Additionally you would be arrested when you try to come back to the US; I know you indicated that you do not plan on returning but you never know when you will want to do so in the future. Before you make a rash decision, why not hire a lawyer to see if he/she can either get your probation terminated or get you permission to leave the country. Please call me at 404-812-4305 if you would like to discuss this in more detail.


If you are on reporting probation and required to be there in person each month, then you will get in trouble if you leave the country and don't come back. They probably won't detain you trying to leave, but probation will issue a warrant for your arrest when you violate probation by failing to appear.

You should go before the judge that sentenced you and ask to be allowed to report to probation by phone or mail. That way you can leave the county and can just call in once per month for the remainder of your probation and you won't have to worry about a warrant being issued.


You will not be stopped gettIng on the plane, but the other responses are correct. Your probation could be revoked. If you are no longer required to report and you have completed all of the terms of your probation, it is likely that your probation officer would have any reason to check on you, so they would not try to revoke. However, if they did, a revocation stops the clock on your probation so that, if you did come back years and years from now, you could be looking at jail time for whatever you have left. I have seen this happen to someone who left the state for 20 years, came back, got pulled over, and sat in jail for months before hiring an attorney to get him out. See about the modification of the terms of probation, but make sure you have met all of the other conditions or modification would be unlikely.

The above information is general in nature. In order to obtain more specific and legal advice upon which to base your important decisions, please contact our office directly for a free phone or in person consultation. Robert M. Gardner, Jr. Hicks, Massey & Gardner, LLP 53 W. Candler St. Or 718 Oak St. Winder, Ga. 30680 Gainesville, Georgia (770) 307-4899 (770) 538-0555 serving metro Atlanta and all of Northeast Georgia Bankruptcy, Divorce, Personal Injury, Worker’s Compensation, Medical Malpractice, Adoption, Civil and Criminal Litigation

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