Attorney Information

Children in Juvenile Court have a constitutional right to a lawyer. If the child wants an attorney, but the family can't afford one, the Court will appoint one. Sometimes the Court appoints a lawyer even if one is not requested in order to protect the interests of the child. The child and his or her parents should discuss their need for a lawyer and make a decision.

Contact: Beverly White - (912) 652-6717


Intake Information

The Intake process begins when a citizen makes a complaint to the Juvenile Court involving an alleged delinquent or an alleged delinquent act or to be a Child in Need of Services (CHINS). The juvenile is either released to their parents or placed in the detention center pending a hearing. The complaint is assigned to a probation officer to conduct the intake and determine the appropriate course of action. A complaint may be handled in one of four ways:

  1. Formal Action - This requires scheduling the matter for a hearing before the Judge.
  2. Informal Adjustment - This is a diversion from the Court hearing. The intake officer sets conditions that must be met if the complaint is to be handled informally. This usually means charging an "informal Adjustment fee" and/or setting other specific conditions (attending the Conflict Resolution program, attending a drug and alcohol assessment/treatment, community service etc.) The intake worker using his/her own discretion usually decides whether or not to handle the case informally.
  3. Dismissal of Complaint - A complaint may be dismissed for several reasons; however, the most common reason is due to a lack of probable cause. If a complaint does not contain adequate information for prosecution, a request can be made by the Assistant District Attorney for the police department to assign a detective to investigate the case further.

Traffic Court Information

Traffic Court Clerk - (912) 652-6720

The parent and child are required to view a video at the beginning of court. If you are late for the video, you will not be allowed in the court room and your case will be rescheduled. When the judge is on the bench, it is your responsibility to listen carefully to the instructions. The hearing is considered an arraignment hearing wherein the police officer is not required to be in attendance. If the child admits to an offense, we will likely dispose of the case during the hearing. If the child denies the charges, a new court date will be scheduled, and the police officer and all witnesses will be subpoenaed to attend the adjudicatory hearing.

If a child is accused of a traffic offense that has not been filed as a delinquent act, you have the right to be represented by an attorney hired at your own expense. You do not have the right to an appointed attorney at public expense. If you do not have an attorney, it is YOUR responsibility to notify the Court to request a subpoena. A subpoena is an Order by the Court demanding that a witness, document, or thing appear in Court.

Your child may be ordered to (1) attend a defensive driving class (6 hours); (2) attend the P.R.I.D.E. class ( free of charge - 2 hrs. and a parent is required to attend with the child ; or (3) order the child to pay a fine (4) perform all of the above.

The court accepts cash, money order or certified funds. No other forms of payment will be accepted.

  1. The court may hold your child's license as an in-house suspension or under certain circumstances may suspend his/her license until age 18.
  2. The Department of Driver Services also has the ability to suspend your child's license. Contact DDS at (678) 413-8400.
  3. The Official Code of Georgia 40-5-57 and www.dds.ga.gov outlines the points assessed for each offense. The Court is required by law to report any offense where points are assessed. IMPORTANT: If your child is ordered to attend a defensive driving class , the school or the court DOES NOT remove these points from your child's license. It is the responsibility of the parent or child to take the original certificate of completion to the Department of Driver Services. For additional information, contact the Governor's Office of Highway Safety at www.gahighwaysafety.org.

If your child is ordered to attend the defensive driving class or to write an essay, you are required to return to court and show the original certificate of completion to the clerk's office. The essay should also be turned in at the Clerk's office. If your child is ordered to attend the P.R.I.D.E. class, the traffic clerk will receive the attendance list from Savannah Chatham Metro Police Department.


Probation Information

The Probation staff provides supervision to children found to be delinquent or a Child in Need of Services (CHINS). Probation Officers meet with the child at least once a month to determine their needs and ensure compliance with their probation. These meetings may take place at the child's school, home or at the Juvenile Court.

Probation Officers may impose additional sanctions if the child does not comply with the conditions of probation. If a child violates the conditions of probation or commits a new offense, the probation officer may file a complaint and bring the child before the judge for review.