People who are convicted of crimes will sometimes be sentenced to probation, which is a monitoring program that enables them to remain in the community while they serve their sentence. Others will be incarcerated upon conviction, but if they behave while they are in prison, they might be able to be released on parole. Just like probation, parole enables them to remain in the community while they finish out their sentence as long as they abide by the rules of the program.
When you are sentenced to probation or placed on parole, you will have to report to an officer. This officer will explain the terms of the program to you. It is crucial for you to understand these terms because if you violate them, you could face more legal trouble.
Some common terms for probation and parole include reporting as required by the officer, taking drug tests periodically, and holding a steady job. You might also be required to get permission if you leave a certain area. You will have to stay away from people who have a criminal history.
A big criteria for successfully completing probation or parole is that you stay out of trouble. You can't get into any new legal trouble, which means you have to follow the law. You will be subject to searches by the probation or parole officer.
All of these terms can be difficult to abide by, but they are crucial if you don't want to have to spend time in prison. If you do violate these rules, be sure that you understand your rights pertaining to the violation charge so that you can decide how to handle it.
Source: New Hampshire Department of Corrections, "Publications - Probation and Parole," accessed Dec. 02, 2016