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Traveling Out of State While on Arizona Probation

Generally, anyone who has been placed on supervised probation in Arizona is not permitted to travel to other states without the expressed permission of the probation officer. There are different ways to get the probation officer's permission to travel out-of-state, and different circumstances under which that permission may or may not be given.

If the probationer wishes to permanently leave Arizona and serve the probation elsewhere, the probationer can consider requesting an interstate compact probation transfer. The interstate compact probation transfer is available in some cases, but not in others. And, it usually takes a good long while (many months) to get the paperwork approved. In the short term, an interstate compact application can limit the ability to travel. According to the rules of interstate compact, if an application for a permanent probation transfer is made, the probationer may not travel to the new state at all during the time that the application is pending.

If a permanent move is not with the probationer has in mind, the probationer may also seek permission to travel temporarily. Generally, the probationer will rarely receive permission to travel out-of-state for more than 30 days at a time. If the probation department were to give permission to travel for longer than 30 days, the probation department would then be required to notify law enforcement or the courts in the state to which the probationer is traveling. Because the probation department doesn't want to do that, there are rarely permits issued for long travel.

Some probation officers grant out of state travel permits more freely than other probation officers. On some occasions, where a particular probation officer might be acting unreasonably in denying permission to travel, the court may be convinced to give permission to travel even over the probation officers objection. There are two prerequisites for successful court involvement – a probation officer that's genuinely being unreasonable, and a judge who is willing to overrule the probation officer.

The above discussion relates to travel while on probation in most cases. Other circumstances may exist. If the probation term is "unsupervised," and for a short period of time, then the probationer may have a blanket permission to travel, i.e., the probation terms are without the requirement of explicit permission for a particular trip.

In any case, be sure to review your terms and conditions of probation and/or check with your probation officer before undertaking any travel. Contact our office if you have run into any accusations regarding a probation violation or other criminal charges. Time is of the essence.

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