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Juvenile Justice

Juvenile Justice Proceedings

Juvenile Justice proceedings, also known as juvenile delinquency or youth justice, involve minors charged with committing an act which would be a crime if committed by an adult. Juvenile Court jurisdiction over youth under the age of 18 is described in Welfare and Institutions Code section 602.

If the youth is declared a ward of the court, they might remain at home on probation under certain conditions and with removal as a possible sanction for probation violation. In some instances, a ward can be immediately removed from the home and placed in another setting, which can range from Juvenile Hall, a county camp, or to a Secure Youth Treatment Facility (SYTF).

With cases that involve crimes of serious or violent felonies, the judge may transfer the case to the criminal jurisdiction where the person may be tried as an adult. For more information on Juvenile Justice, including the rights and roles of victims involved in juvenile court, click on the link:  to the Judicial Council website.

Juvenile Justice Resources

Juvenile Justice Overview (Video)

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Sealing of Records

In many cases the court will seal juvenile records upon satisfactory completion of probation on or after January 1, 2015. For more information please review:

For cases that were completed prior to January 1, 2015 but not already sealed, a person may petition the court to seal their juvenile record(s). In this instance, a person qualifies to have the record sealed if:
  • The person is at least 18 or it has been at least 5 years since the case was closed; and
  • The youth has been rehabilitated to the satisfaction of the court.

The court will not take into consideration any outstanding fines and court ordered fees when deciding whether to seal a record. When a case is sealed, the youth or the parents/guardian will still be required to pay any court-ordered restitution unless otherwise ordered by the court. For more information on how to petition the court to seal a juvenile record please review the following forms or consult with your attorney:

Other Resources:

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