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Juvenile Charges

When your child is charged with a crime, it can be an intimidating time for both you and your child. What will happen to his future? Will she have to give up on her hopes and dreams? For the most part, Alabama's juvenile court system is focused on rehabilitation.

However, a delinquency or minor offender charge could still have a big impact on your child's future. An experienced Alabama criminal lawyer with juvenile defense experience could help you understand your child's case while constructing a solid defense to fight for his or her future.

Huntsville Juvenile Defense Attorney

Juvenile court is quite different than adult court, and therefore needs an attorney who understands and can work with the differences. The compassionate juvenile defense lawyers at Law Offices Of Segal & Segal have nearly 40 years of combined experience working on both sides of criminal defense law, and have the past experience it takes to properly handle your child's juvenile defense case.

If you are concerned with your child's future due to a charge brought against them in Madison County, Marshall County, Limestone County, Jackson County, or the surrounding areas – contact the experienced juvenile defense attorneys at Law Offices Of Segal & Segal. Your first consultation exploring the options for your child's case is free, so call Law Offices Of Segal & Segal today to schedule yours.

Alabama Juvenile Defense Information Center

Important Definitions Related to Juvenile Court


  • Any individual under the age of 18 years of age
  • Also applies to any individual under 21 years of age who is before the court to address a delinquency matter that occurred by for that person's 18th birthday

Child in Need of Supervision

  • A child who has been adjudicated by juvenile court for any of the following:
    • Habitual truancy at fault of the child and not the parent or guardian
    • Disobeys reasonable and lawful demands of parent or other legal custodian to the extent that the child is out of the control of the parent or other legal custodian
    • Leaves and/or remains away from the home without permission from the parent or other legal guardian or custodian
    • Commits an offense that is illegal but not criminal
  • Child therefore is in need of care, rehabilitation, or supervision

Delinquent Act

  • An act committed by a child that is a violation, misdemeanor, or felony offense pursuant to municipal, county, state, or federal law
  • This excludes the following offenses when committed by a 16 or 17 year old child:
    • Non-felony traffic or water safety offense
    • Capital offense
    • Felony involving a deadly weapon
    • Class A felony
    • Felony involving serious bodily injury or death
    • Felony involving the use of a dangerous instrument against certain law enforcement, court or correctional officials
    • Drug trafficking
    • Any subsequent criminal or delinquent act as a youthful offender

Juvenile Diversion

  • Community-based programs designed for child offenders who have committed a minor offense as an alternative to arrest, prosecution, or sentencing
  • Usually involves an assessment of the child's needs and a subsequent action and/or treatment plan

Juvenile Detention

  • Temporary placement in secure custody of a child alleged or adjudicated to be delinquent pending disposition or transfer to a residential facility for further care

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Common Juvenile Offenses in Madison County, AL

Every parent wants to think that their child will grow up to be an upstanding citizen without a delinquent or criminal record. However, thousands of crimes are committed by minors in the United States every day, including a variety of juvenile drug offenses. These crimes are all over the spectrum, but there are crimes that are repeated more often than others by juveniles. These offenses include:

  • Assault and other violent crimes
  • Arson
  • Vandalism
  • Theft
  • Burglary
  • Marijuana possession
  • Drug possession with intent to sell
  • Minors in possession of alcohol
  • Under 21 DUI
  • Sexual assault

In Alabama, some minors may commit these offenses purely as a part of poor decision-making, and some may do so as a part of gang violence. Contacting an experienced juvenile defense lawyer in Huntsville could be paramount in protecting your child's future by obtaining a favorable outcome in your child's case.

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Registration for Minors Accused of Sex Offenses

A juvenile who was 14 years old or older at the time of their offense will be subject to sex offender registration and notification. Certain offenses such as first-degree rape, sodomy in the first degree, sexual abuse first-degree and sexual torture require that the juvenile be registered sex offender for life however, that juvenile may petition the court for relief from registration and notification if notification was ordered 25 years after they have been released from the offense subjecting them to registration.

A juvenile who was 14 years old or older at the time of their offense and has been found to have committed a lower-level sex offense will be required to register as a sex offender for a period of 10 years from the date of the release from the sexual offense offense they were found to have committed.

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Huntsville Juvenile Record Sealing Process

Juvenile first offenders of certain offenses may be eligible to have their record sealed, which could better their chances at a brighter future. Keep in mind, though, that the sealing of a record is not an erasure, and certain entities will be able to access the record after obtaining the court's permission. However, a sealed record is still better than an unsealed record.

Under Alabama Code Section 12-15-136, your child may be eligible to have his or her record sealed if the following requirements are met:

  • It has been two years since a final order of the juvenile court which doesn't involve custody or supervision requirements or since the final discharge of the minor from legal custody
  • Minor was not adjudicated delinquent or a youthful offender of any misdemeanor or felony weapon, drug, violence, or sexual offense
  • Minor has no pending charge for any misdemeanor or felony weapon, drug, violence, or sexual offense

Once the record is sealed, it is important for your child to keep a clean record. Any subsequent adjudication of delinquency for crimes involving sexual offenses, threats of violence, violence, weapons, or drugs will nullify the sealing. An experienced criminal defense attorney will be able to help you through the record sealing process.

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Representing Juveniles Accused of Crimes in Madison County

If you or your child has been charged with a juvenile offense in Huntsville or the surrounding areas of Decatur, Madison, Athens, Albertville, Scottsboro, Meridianville, Hartselle, or Arab contact the experienced juvenile defense attorneys at Law Offices Of Segal & Segal. They will use their knowledge of both sides of the courtroom to build a strong defense and protect your child's rights and future. Call us today at (256) 533-4529 to schedule your free consultation.