Your Better Tomorrow Starts Today We can see through the emotions of divorce to a better solution,
and can help our clients see through the same lens.

Portland Juvenile Delinquency Attorneys

Protecting Your Child's Rights in Court

If your child is charged with violating a criminal statute, they may be at risk of facing penalties from a juvenile delinquency court. Juveniles adjudicated of offenses (whereas adults are convicted of crimes) can face a wide range of penalties, from probation to admittance into a youth correctional facility. Furthermore, the juvenile court has wide ranging authority to order parents to engage in certain services or conduct based on the delinquency proceedings.

At Landerholm Family Law, our experienced Portland juvenile delinquency lawyers can help you navigate your delinquency case, advocating for you and your child's rights in court.

To schedule a consultation with our team, contact us online or via phone at (888) 981-9511.

How Juvenile Delinquency Cases Work in Oregon

Each Oregon County has its own juvenile department. Children can be referred to a County's juvenile department intake through sources such as schools, law enforcement, and their own parents.

When a minor gets referred to a County juvenile department, the next steps depend on the severity of the case:

  • For minor offenses, professionals at the juvenile department may simply issue an informal warning to a minor, sign an accountability agreement with them, and resolve the case.
    • Youth who are offered Formal Accountability Agreements are offered the opportunity to speak with an attorney prior to agreeing to any proposed terms.
  • For more significant offenses, the juvenile department may issue a formal petition to a juvenile court, initiating a juvenile delinquency case.

After a minor's case proceeds to juvenile court, it can again take several branching paths:

  • After the Court makes a judgment, it can issue a probation agreement for the convicted minor. If the minor carries out the terms of the probation, it will result in a successful case termination, resolving the case.
  • However, if the minor is not capable of complying with the terms of their probation or attempts to rehabilitate them are unsuccessful, the juvenile court will refer them to the Oregon Youth Authority (OYA).

Oregon Youth Authority professionals work with minors adjudicated (or convicted as an adult while still a minor) of serious offenses, who refuse to comply with the terms of their probation, or who represent a serious risk to the community.

Professionals at OYA often resort to one of three methods when dealing with juveniles within the delinquency system, depending on the severity of the case:

  1. A more stringent probation agreement.
  2. Foster care. For some minors in unsafe or transient living situations, an assignment to a proctor care home provides the necessary stability for rehabilitation and reintegration into the community. Where a proctor home is unavailable, OYA may consult with DHS for additional resources.
  3. Residential treatment. If a party is sentenced to residential treatment, they live with their peers either in a facility or a home under the care of proctors, depending on how OYA decides to handle the case. Minors in residential treatment may still be able to attend school, visit home, and engage in family treatment services.
  4. Independent living. In an independent living situation, a minor lives by themself in a facility or home under the care of professionals. Independent living is often reserved for individuals who represent a significant risk to either themselves or their communities.

Some juvenile delinquency cases could have different progressions. For example, if an adult is arrested for an offense they committed before the age of 18 and is sentenced before the age of 20, they may be sentenced to time in a youth correctional facility or transition into a program at a Department of Corrections (DOC) facility.

At Landerholm Family Law, we know how important your children are to you. We'll fight relentlessly for you and your child's rights, working with you to ensure your child finds the best path forward in their case.

To schedule a consultation with our team, contact us online or via phone at (888) 981-9511.

About Our Team Portland, Oregon City & Salem Family Law Firm

At our family law firm, we understand the importance of taking an individualized approach to working with clients. Our goal is to give our clients stability and confidence during a difficult time of their lives. From start to finish, we can provide the personalized counsel you deserve.

Learn More